solar system


Definition of solar system 

: the sun together with the group of celestial bodies that are held by its attraction and revolve around it also : a similar system centered on another star

Examples of solar system in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

According to the idea, Pluto was formed from the remains of a billion icy comets in the early days of the solar system. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Pluto May Have Been Formed by a Billion Comets," 25 May 2018 Out of the rest of those space rocks, only 46 had orbits stable enough to keep them from crashing into the sun or being flung out of the solar system. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Is This Backwards-Orbiting Asteroid an Interstellar Visitor?," 23 May 2018 Though the protomolecule’s alarming transformative nature has far-reaching implications for every aspect of human life, it can also be wielded as a weapon, a fact that now threatens to upend the balance of the solar system. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "The Expanse has threatened nuclear war for two nail-biting seasons — now, it’s pushing the button," 4 May 2018 And, according to a new study, these meteorite crystals provide the first physical evidence of an ancient lost building block from the dawn of the solar system. Doris Elin Salazar, Scientific American, "Diamonds in Meteorite May Come from a Lost Planet," 18 Apr. 2018 This is Antarctica calling Completed in 2010, the IceCube observatory at the Amundsen–Scott South Pole Station in Antarctica aims to capture these exceptional encounters between neutrinos from beyond our solar system and atomic nuclei. Eoin O'carroll, The Christian Science Monitor, "Neutrino demonstration heralds a new way of observing the cosmos," 12 July 2018 When the Voyager 1 swung by Jupiter in 1979, scientists got their first glimpse of lightning on the solar system’s biggest planet. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Jupiter’s Lightning Is More Earth-Like Than We Thought," 8 June 2018 Events include live music, talks on the solar system and water management, a farmers market and an art exhibit, according to a news release. Sara Sneath,, "Loyola University hosts Earth Day activities throughout the week," 16 Apr. 2018 This week’s photos take us out to our solar system and then to infinity and beyond—almost. Shannon Stirone, WIRED, "Space Photos of the Week: Mars Has Spiders in the Springtime," 14 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'solar system.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of solar system

circa 1704, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

19 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for solar system

The first known use of solar system was circa 1704

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More Definitions for solar system

solar system


English Language Learners Definition of solar system

the solar system : our sun and the planets that move around it

: a star other than our sun and the planets that move around it

solar system


Kids Definition of solar system

: the sun and the planets, asteroids, comets, and meteors that revolve around it

More from Merriam-Webster on solar system

Britannica English: Translation of solar system for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about solar system

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to reject or criticize sharply

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