GCSE Physics Revision: The Solar System

12th April 2017

New GCSE Physics

The Solar System - Key points to remember


The solar system is an important aspect of the Physics GCSE syllabus, so take a look at the information below to get on track with your Physics revision.


Our solar system comprises of many different parts including:


  • The sun - which is a star and not a planet

  • Planets and dwarf plants

  • Many moons

  • Comets and asteroids which orbit around the sun


There are 9 key planets and 2 more dwarf planets. However, it is believed that there are more out there and we just haven’t discovered them yet! Let’s take a look at the names of planets that we have already found:

Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto. The 2 smaller dwarf planets are called Cersis and Eris.


All the planets orbit around the sun and it is the sun’s gravitational pull which keeps them all in place. All the planets take a different length of time to complete their orbit - the further they are from the sun, the longer it takes. Therefore, of the 8 main planets, Pluto has the largest orbit period.


Most planets are orbited by satellite moons - the moon we can see in the nighttime sky is the moon that orbits the Earth for example. The earth is also orbited by many man-made satellites which are used for our communication services and observational purposes. Finally, planets are also orbited by asteroids and comets - but to find out more about those visit our song on Asteroid and comets which can be found here.

Don’t forget to check out our song on The Solar System to learn more that is going to help you ace your Physics GCSE examinations this year!


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