Formation and evolution of the Solar System

solar nebulaformation of the Solar SystemoutwardSolar System formationearly Solar Systemevolution of the Solar Systemorigin of the Solar Systemmigrated outwardSolar Systemsubnebula
The formation and evolution of the Solar System began 4.6 billion years ago with the gravitational collapse of a small part of a giant molecular cloud.wikipedia
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Sun

solarSolThe Sun
Most of the collapsing mass collected in the center, forming the Sun, while the rest flattened into a protoplanetary disk out of which the planets, moons, asteroids, and other small Solar System bodies formed.
Most of this matter gathered in the center, whereas the rest flattened into an orbiting disk that became the Solar System.

Nebular hypothesis

planet formationplanetary formationformation
This model, known as the nebular hypothesis was first developed in the 18th century by Emanuel Swedenborg, Immanuel Kant, and Pierre-Simon Laplace.
The nebular hypothesis is the most widely accepted model in the field of cosmogony to explain the formation and evolution of the Solar System (as well as other planetary systems).

Asteroid

asteroidsminor bodyMinor Planet
Most of the collapsing mass collected in the center, forming the Sun, while the rest flattened into a protoplanetary disk out of which the planets, moons, asteroids, and other small Solar System bodies formed.
There exist millions of asteroids, many thought to be the shattered remnants of planetesimals, bodies within the young Sun's solar nebula that never grew large enough to become planets.

Pierre-Simon Laplace

LaplaceLaplacianLaplace, Pierre-Simon
This model, known as the nebular hypothesis was first developed in the 18th century by Emanuel Swedenborg, Immanuel Kant, and Pierre-Simon Laplace.
He restated and developed the nebular hypothesis of the origin of the Solar System and was one of the first scientists to postulate the existence of black holes and the notion of gravitational collapse.

Timeline of the far future

far future40,000 years296,000 years
Ultimately, over the course of tens of billions of years, it is likely that the Sun will be left with none of the original bodies in orbit around it.
All projections of the future of the Earth, the Solar System, and the universe must account for the second law of thermodynamics, which states that entropy, or a loss of the energy available to do work, must rise over time.

Immanuel Kant

KantKantianKant, Immanuel
This model, known as the nebular hypothesis was first developed in the 18th century by Emanuel Swedenborg, Immanuel Kant, and Pierre-Simon Laplace.
The next year, he expanded this reasoning to the formation and evolution of the Solar System in his Universal Natural History and Theory of the Heavens.

Earth

terrestrialworldGlobal
The first step toward a theory of Solar System formation and evolution was the general acceptance of heliocentrism, which placed the Sun at the centre of the system and the Earth in orbit around it. This concept had developed for millennia (Aristarchus of Samos had suggested it as early as 250 BC), but was not widely accepted until the end of the 17th century. These rocky bodies would become the terrestrial planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars).
The bodies in the Solar System formed and evolved with the Sun.

Planetary migration

migrationmigrating Neptunemigrated
This planetary migration is now thought to have been responsible for much of the Solar System's early evolution.
The generally accepted theory of planet formation from a protoplanetary disk predicts such planets cannot form so close to their stars, as there is insufficient mass at such small radii and the temperature is too high to allow the formation of rocky or icy planetesimals.

Geology

geologicalgeologistgeologic
Its subsequent development has interwoven a variety of scientific disciplines including astronomy, physics, geology, and planetary science.
4.567 Ga (gigaannum: billion years ago): Solar system formation

Solar System

outer Solar Systeminner Solar SystemSol system
The formation and evolution of the Solar System began 4.6 billion years ago with the gravitational collapse of a small part of a giant molecular cloud. The inner Solar System, the region of the Solar System inside 4 AU, was too warm for volatile molecules like water and methane to condense, so the planetesimals that formed there could only form from compounds with high melting points, such as metals (like iron, nickel, and aluminium) and rocky silicates.
The Solar System formed 4.6 billion years ago from the gravitational collapse of a giant interstellar molecular cloud.

Mercury (planet)

Mercuryplanet MercuryMercurio
These rocky bodies would become the terrestrial planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars).
Alternatively, Mercury may have formed from the solar nebula before the Sun's energy output had stabilized.

Protoplanetary disk

protoplanetary discprotoplanetary disksprotoplanetary discs
Most of the collapsing mass collected in the center, forming the Sun, while the rest flattened into a protoplanetary disk out of which the planets, moons, asteroids, and other small Solar System bodies formed.
As this collapsing cloud, called a solar nebula, becomes denser, random gas motions originally present in the cloud average out in favor of the direction of the nebula's net angular momentum.

Iron

FeFe 2+ Fe(III)
The inner Solar System, the region of the Solar System inside 4 AU, was too warm for volatile molecules like water and methane to condense, so the planetesimals that formed there could only form from compounds with high melting points, such as metals (like iron, nickel, and aluminium) and rocky silicates.
In phases of the meteorites Semarkona and Chervony Kut, a correlation between the concentration of 60 Ni, the granddaughter of 60 Fe, and the abundance of the stable iron isotopes provided evidence for the existence of 60 Fe at the time of formation of the Solar System.

Astronomy

astronomicalastronomerastronomers
Its subsequent development has interwoven a variety of scientific disciplines including astronomy, physics, geology, and planetary science.
Topics also studied by theoretical astrophysicists include Solar System formation and evolution; stellar dynamics and evolution; galaxy formation and evolution; magnetohydrodynamics; large-scale structure of matter in the universe; origin of cosmic rays; general relativity and physical cosmology, including string cosmology and astroparticle physics.

Mars

Martianplanet MarsRed Planet
These rocky bodies would become the terrestrial planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars).
It is thought that, during the Solar System's formation, Mars was created as the result of a stochastic process of run-away accretion of material from the protoplanetary disk that orbited the Sun.

Calcium–aluminium-rich inclusion

calcium-aluminium-rich inclusionCAICAIs
The oldest inclusions found in meteorites, thought to trace the first solid material to form in the pre-solar nebula, are 4568.2 million years old, which is one definition of the age of the Solar System.
They are thought to have formed as fine-grained condensates from a high temperature (>1300 K) gas that existed in the protoplanetary disk at early stages of Solar System formations.

Nice model

computer modelJupiter migrated inwardmigrated outward
According to the Nice model, after the formation of the Solar System, the orbits of all the giant planets continued to change slowly, influenced by their interaction with the large number of remaining planetesimals.
The Nice model is a scenario for the dynamical evolution of the Solar System.

Jupiter

Jovianplanet JupiterGiove
The giant planets (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune) formed further out, beyond the frost line, which is the point between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter where the material is cool enough for volatile icy compounds to remain solid.
The atmospheric proportions of hydrogen and helium are close to the theoretical composition of the primordial solar nebula.

Asteroid belt

main-beltmain beltmain-belt asteroid
The outer edge of the terrestrial region, between 2 and 4 AU from the Sun, is called the asteroid belt.
The asteroid belt formed from the primordial solar nebula as a group of planetesimals.

Terrestrial planet

terrestrial planetsrockyrocky planet
These rocky bodies would become the terrestrial planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars).
Terrestrial planets have secondary atmospheres, generated through volcanism or comet impacts, in contrast to the giant planets, whose atmospheres are primary, captured directly from the original solar nebula.

Detached object

detachedESDOExtended
Several simulations of our young Sun interacting with close-passing stars over the first 100 million years of its life produce anomalous orbits observed in the outer Solar System, such as detached objects.
Further improvement in the orbit and potential resonance of these objects will help to understand the migration of the giant planets and the formation of the Solar System.

Venus

Morning Starevening starCytherocentric
These rocky bodies would become the terrestrial planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars).
Venus may have formed from the solar nebula with a different rotation period and obliquity, reaching its current state because of chaotic spin changes caused by planetary perturbations and tidal effects on its dense atmosphere, a change that would have occurred over the course of billions of years.

Kuiper belt

KBOKuiper belt objectsKuiper-belt
Studies of the structure of the Kuiper belt and of anomalous materials within it suggest that the Sun formed within a cluster of between 1,000 and 10,000 stars with a diameter of between 6.5 and 19.5 light years and a collective mass of. Beyond Neptune, the Solar System continues into the Kuiper belt, the scattered disc, and the Oort cloud, three sparse populations of small icy bodies thought to be the points of origin for most observed comets.
Like the asteroid belt, it consists mainly of small bodies or remnants from when the Solar System formed.

Oort cloud

Öpik-Oort CloudÖpik–Oort cloud20,000–50,000 AU
Beyond Neptune, the Solar System continues into the Kuiper belt, the scattered disc, and the Oort cloud, three sparse populations of small icy bodies thought to be the points of origin for most observed comets.
Astronomers conjecture that the matter composing the Oort cloud formed closer to the Sun and was scattered far into space by the gravitational effects of the giant planets early in the Solar System's evolution.

Giant-impact hypothesis

giant impact hypothesisgiant impactcollision
Still others, such as Earth's Moon, may be the result of giant collisions.
Giant collisions are consistent with the leading theories of the formation of the Solar System.