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Space Vocab. Science

Revolution The movement of an object in a circular or elliptical course around another or about an axis or center
Rotation The spin of an object in space
Orbit The elliptical PATH an object takes in space while revolving around another object
Gravity An attracting force due to mass or rotation
Atmosphere A mixture of gases that surrounds a planet
Sun A medium sized star;the center of our solar system
Planet A body that orbits around the sun or a star and does not produce its own light
Terrestrial Planet A small,dense, rocky planet similar to Earth (Inner planets)
Gas Giant A large, gaseous planet of the outer solar system with no known solid surface (Outer planets)
Natural Satellite A smaller body that orbits around a larger body
Moon A natural satellite of a planet (Note: satellites are natural or artificial bodies that revolve around more massive bodies such as planets)
Artificial Satellite Any human made object placed in orbit around a body in space
Comet A small body of ice, rock, and cosmic dust loosely packed together
Asteroid a small, rocky body that revolves around the sun
Meteoroid a very small, rocky body found in space HINT: mini asteroid
Meteorite a meteoroid that reaches Earth’s surface without burning up completely HINT: It takes the “right” path to Earth
Meteor a bright streak of light caused when a meteoroid or comet dust burns up in the atmosphere NOTE: Many people call this a “shooting star”, but it is not)
Thrust The force that accelerates a rocket
Orbital Velocity the speed and direction a rocket must have in order to orbit Earth
Escape Velocity the speed and direction a rocket must have in order to completely break away from a planet’s gravitational pull
Centripetal Force the force that causes an object to follow a curved path
Created by: skye864535