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INFOGRAPHIC

Orbital Plane

Orbital Plane

An orbital plane is the flat, disk-shaped space that connects the center of the object being orbited with the center of the orbiting objects.

Grades

5 - 12

Subjects

Astronomy, Physics

All the planets, asteroids, meteoroids, and comets in the solar system orbit the sun. This is called heliocentric orbit.

Almost all these bodies also travel in the same orbital plane, a thin disk surrounding the sun and extending to the edge of the solar system. The orbital plane usually prevents planets or other celestial bodies from bumping into each other.

Some comets orbit outside the orbital plane, perpendicular or at an angle to the rest of the solar system bodies.

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Illustrator
Tim Gunther, Illustrator
Page Producer
Makayla Trotter
other
Last Updated

May 20, 2022

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