Facts about the Earth

Facts about the EarthEarth is the sole planet in the Solar System to have water in its three states of matter: as a liquid (rain, sea, etc.), a solid (ice) and as a gas (clouds).

The length of time it requires for Earth to orbit the Sun is 365 plus a quarter days. To make up this extra quarter which is not counted at the finish of a year, we have an additional day every four years on 29th February.

Earth and Mercury are the two most dense planets in the Solar System. This means that particles inside the planet are most closely packed together.

The centre of the Earth, its core, is molten. This means that it is liquid rock which sometimes erupts onto the surface through volcanic eruptions. This core is 7,500°c, hotter than the surface of the Sun.

Earth is gradually slowing down. Every few years, an extra second is added to make up for lost time. Millions of years ago, a day on Earth will have been 20 hours long. It is believed that, in millions of years time, a day on Earth will be 27 hours long. 

Facts about Earth for Kids

Natural gas doesn't have an odour, strong smells are added to it by humans so it can be detected when there are leaks.

Magma is the hot liquid rock under the surface of the Earth, it is known as lava after it comes out of a volcano.

The world's largest desert (outside of the polar regions) is the Sahara, it covers about one third of Africa!

Hawaii is moving towards Japan at the speed of 10cm a year. This is because they are on different tectonic plates.

The volcanic rock known as pumice is the only rock that can float in water.

Stretching out to an impressive length of 6696 kilometres (4160 miles) long, the Nile River is the longest river on earth.

Earthquakes that occur out at sea can cause huge tsunamis capable of reaching land and endangering people.

On average the Atlantic Ocean is the saltiest of Earth’s major oceans.

Although earthquakes can be deadly, most are very small and not even felt by humans.

Rock found at the bottom of the Grand Canyon is around 2 billion years old.

Earth in the Solar System

The Earth is the 3rd planet from the Sun in the Solar System. It is the earth we evolved on and the sole planet in the Solar System that is known to support life.

The Earth is approximately 7,926 miles (12,756 km) in diameter. The Earth is the fifth-largest planet in the Solar System (after Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune).

The Earth has one moon. The diameter of the moon is approximately one quarter of the diameter of the Earth.

The moon may have once been part of the Earth; it may have been broken off the Earth throughout a catastrophic collision of a massive body with the Earth billions of years back.

The Earth's mass is around 5.98 x 1024 kg.

The Earth has an average density of 5520 kg/m3 (water has a density of 1027 kg/m3). Earth is the densest planet in the Solar System.

To escape the Earth's gravitational pull, an item must reach a speed of 24,840 miles each hour (11,180 m/sec).

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