solar system origins


Theories Through the Ages: How Old is The Solar System? (Fall 2017)

The age of the Solar System has been studied throughout the world for hundreds of years and is a question that will likely never have an answer with complete certainty. Existence as we know it, did not develop from a timeline. Mankind has had an intrinsic motivation to know how we came to be, where we came from, and why we are here existing. Attempts have been made throughout the course of history into how the solar system formed, specifically how long formation would have occurred. Without the use of something convenient such as time travel, academics were restricted to the information available to them. This article will touch on some of the more prevalent theories pertaining to the age of the solar system, and divulge into their utility over the course of human history. Solar System theories will be divided pertaining to age and formation into two categories, early attempts and recent theories. The early attempts such as those from biblical eras, will briefly discuss theories that have been disproven. While more recent theories developed in the latter portion of human existence, will reflect those that are still relevant today. Five main theories presented are; Vortex, Nebular, Patterson, Apollo Missions, and Late Heavy Bombardment. Our team chose to focus on those five because, they each contribute aspects into the general question of the age of the solar system – as well as providing insight into the ever large daunting task of establishing a definitive age with limited resources. Through these theoretical advances, theories are able to be evaluated and reconsidered, allowing progressive understanding in regards to the age of the Solar System.


Courtesy of NASA/ESA/J. Hester/A. Loll

How Do We Know Our Solar System Formed from Stardust? (Winter 2016)

The solar nebular hypothesis is a widely used theory to explain how our solar system formed. By assuming a giant gas cloud condensed to form our solar system the project will then explore where the cloud came from. Assuming the cloud came from and is made up of star dust, which creates the fuel for the solar nebula. To provide supporting truth to this statement the research project will explore the work Cecilia Payne and Arthur Eddington.