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The Frozen Planet You’re almost at the end of your tour. Neptune is the last planet in our solar system. Neptune was discovered through math. Some astronomers noticed that Uranus’s


orbit didn’t seem quite right. Two math experts thought that another planet’s gravity was pulling on Uranus. T ese experts used math to predict where the other planet was. Astronomers looked where the planet was supposed to be and found it. Neptune lies 30 times farther away from


the sun than Earth. It takes this planet almost 165 Earth years to orbit the sun. Neptune gets little heat or light from the sun. It’s cold here. T is planet is mostly made of ice. Neptune is known for its powerful storms.


Winds here are the fastest in the solar system. T ese winds can blow up to 2,575 kilometers (1,600 miles) per hour. T at’s nine times faster than winds on Earth.


Good Neighbors It’s pretty chilly this far from the sun. You should probably head back to Earth. Fire the rockets and settle in for the ride. You live in an interesting neighborhood.


Eight planets and one star make up our solar system. From the smallest planet nearest the sun to the dark and icy gas giants, each planet has a story to tell. Each world is unique.


moon: a natural object that orbits a planet


orbit: to move around a star, planet, or other object in space planet: a nearly round object that orbits a star


solar system: the sun and everything that orbits around it star: a body of hot gases that makes energy


Storms swirl across Neptune.


NOVEMBER-DECEMBER 2012 15


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