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Emily LakdawallaOctober 31, 2011

Scale solar system presentation slide, version 2

Last month I posted a preliminary version of a slide I was working on for use in my public presentations, a slide that contains everything in the solar system bigger than 400 kilometers across, and invited comment. I've listened to all of your comments and corrections and come up with a second version. One of the most frequent comments was that the overlapping of the giant planets created an optical illusion, making people think that it was perspective that diminished the sizes of Uranus and Neptune, which made Saturn appear larger than Jupiter. I liked overlapping the giant planets for aesthetic reasons, but am trying a non-overlapping version in this new one. What do you think?

Every round object in the solar system, to scale (widescreen)

Montage © 2011 Emily Lakdawalla, The Planetary Society. Image data courtesy NASA/JPL and JHUAPL/CIW. Image processing by Bjorn Jonsson; Mattias Malmer; Ted Stryk; Gordan Ugarkovic. TNO artwork by A. Feild (STSCI)

Every round object in the solar system, to scale (widescreen)
Global views of round worlds across the solar system taken by a dozen different spacecraft. The boundary between round and not-round occurs between around 400 and 600 kilometers' diameter, depending on the composition of the world. The trans-Neptunian objects in lower right corner are represented by artworks except for Pluto and Charon.

For reference, here's what version 1 looked like.

Scale solar system presentation slide (version 1)

Emily Lakdawalla, the Planetary Society. Images from NASA / JPL & JHUAPL missions, processed by Björn Jónsson, Mattias Malmer, Ted Stryk, & Gordan Ugarkovic. TNO art by NASA, ESA, and A. Feild (STScI)

Scale solar system presentation slide (version 1)
An updated version is available here.

Read more: pretty pictures, scale comparisons, amateur image processing, global views, many worlds

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Emily Lakdawalla

Solar System Specialist for The Planetary Society
Read more articles by Emily Lakdawalla

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