The Sun, its eight major planets, the dwarf planets and small bodies, and interplanetary dust and gas under the Sun's gravitational control. Another component of the solar system is the solar wind. The Sun contains more than 99% of the mass of the solar system; most of the rest is distributed among the planets, with Jupiter containing about 70%. According to the prevailing theory, the solar system originated from the solar nebula. See also asteroid; Centaur object; Ceres; comet; Earth; Eris; Jupiter; Kuiper belt; Mars; Mercury; meteorite; Neptune; Oort cloud; Pluto; Saturn; Uranus; Venus.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.For the full entry on solar system, visit Britannica.com.
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