Physics Van 3-site Navigational Menu

Physics Van Navigational Menu

Q & A: Do all the planets rotate and revolve in the same direction?

Learn more physics!

Most recent answer: 05/28/2013
Q:
Why does venus revolve in opposite direction around sun different from other planets?
- Varun (age 15)
Vijayawada,andhra pradesh, india
A:

Hi Varun,

Actually, Venus and all the planets revolve about the sun in the same direction. Most of the planets also spin about their axes in the same direction. This consistency came about because the entire solar system formed billions of years ago in a giant cloud of dust. The cloud of dust was initially spinning slightly, so when the gravity pulled the dust together to form planets, they were all spinning the same way about their axes as well as revolving the same way about the Sun .

The exceptions to the spin rule are Uranus and Venus. We believe that they were initially also spinning in the same direction, but then huge asteroids hit them many years ago, and changed their spin. These planets still revolve the same around the Sun as do the others.

David Schmid

 


(published on 05/28/2013)

Follow-up on this answer.