smallest planet

This is Levon. He’s 7, has googly eyes and the smallest paws on the planet, and LOVES his wubba.

He likes to scream and pee on things you leave on the floor of the laundry room, but we love him all the same.

New day, new series of photos. I’m going to try to blog about the planets of the Solar System; First up is Mercury, which is the smallest and innermost planet. With a diameter ~4878km, it is smaller than some of the moons in the Solar System. The small planet in a 3:2 resonance with the sun, giving it a unique position where a single day takes 2 Mercurian years. It has the smallest tilt of any planet in the Solar System at just 1/30 of a degree.

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Astronomy and Astrophysics of Pandora

So I doubt anyone will care or be interested in this, but using what was listed as canon from the Borderlands wiki, a lot of math, and a LOT of educated guess work, I’ve figured out a lot of the astronomical and planetological details about Pandora.

Do not fear, however, as I will translate all the techno-mumbo-jumbo into things people can actually understand. Let’s get started.

Pandora is just one, the smallest actually, of several planets orbiting the star called Hephaestus. This star is K4(V) main sequence star, with a luminosity of 2.83 that of Sol’s, a stellar radius of approximately 2.75 that of Sol’s, and a surface temperature of approximately 4560K.

What that means is that Hephaestus is nearly three times the size of Earth, is nearly three times brighter, gives off reddish-orange light, but isn’t quite as hot as the Sun.

Now we know Pandora rotates incredibly slowly. One rotation takes 90 Earth days, and orbits very slowly as well, with one full orbit around Hephaestus taking ten earth years.

Pandora’s orbit path around Hephaestus is much more elliptical than that of Earth’s around the sun, that is to say the variance between how far Pandora is from Hephaestus at its closest and farthest is a much greater difference than Earth.

As a result, for seven of the ten years of an orbit, the planet is in one long drawn out winter where most forms of life go into hibernation. This is then followed by a comparatively short three year summer.

The winters can be utterly brutal, with temperatures as low as 141 degrees Kelvin (-206F, -132C). Meanwhile, at the height of summer, temperatures can reach 331K (136F, 58C).

Measurements taken over the whole planet over the course of an entire rotation put the average surface temperature of Pandora at 236K (-35F, -37C). If we limit our measurements to the “habitable” regions only, however, it’s a little warmer, at around 263K (14F, -10C). Still, as a result, Pandora is a much colder place than it looks.

As I mentioned earlier, Pandora is actually a rather small planet. It only has a radius of 3,573km and thus a surface area of about 1,601,570 square kilometers. This makes it only around half the size of Earth.

Pandora, as we know, however, is highly rich in minerals and is an incredibly dense little world, generating 73% of the Earth’s gravity. Its atmosphere is also very dense and atmospheric pressure at sea level on Pandora is actually slightly higher than it is on Earth.

But speaking of sea level, a good question to be asking about now is where is all the water? In Borderlands we see a lot of tried up gullies and deserts as well as other evidence that there used to be water. So where did it go?

Simple. The answer I’ve come up with, based on everything I’ve worked out, is that the native life of Pandora isn’t reliant on water and there was no (liquid at least) water in the first place. Instead there was something else.

When you do see liquid (what appears to be water), what you’re actually seeing is diethyl ether. Where the ether came from is a good question, and if you really are that curious, I’ll be honest, I have no idea save to say “Eridians probably”.

Now the thing about ether is at the height of Pandora’s winter, it’s just cold enough for ether to freeze. During most of the year it’s the right temperature for it to be liquid, but in the short summer, in many areas it’s hot enough for the ether to simply turn into a gas and disperse, to be replaced in the next winter.

That’s possibly what’s in a lot of those explosive and flammable barrels and what lets psychos take so much damage. It could explain a lot, really.

As a final note, though I haven’t worked it out in much detail, I will go on to mention a few things about Elpis, Pandora’s moon.

Elpis is quite probably very large compared to Pandora for a moon (closer to the size of Pandora than the moon is to Earth), and with an accompanying mass and gravitational pull, causing some wild tidal effects on Pandora’s surface and weather, as well as reflecting a lot of light from Hephaestus down onto the surface. In fact, the two objects may be more like a binary system than a moon orbiting a planet.

Either way, the average temperature on Elpis has to be below 90K for the methane there to freeze, which is, there is no other way of putting it, really fucking cold. That’s as near as makes no difference -300F and -185C. That’s colder than the coldest it gets on our moon.

Which brings up a very interesting problem. We’re told that Elpis reflects light onto Pandora’s surface, illuminating the dark side of the planet (at least occasionally), but for that to happen, Elpis would have to be exposed directly to the heat and light from Hephaestus.

That would heat the surface of Elpis up to such levels that the methane would become a gas and, assuming the Crackening affected all of Elpis, it would immediately be ignited by the lava and magma exposed on the surface.

So this brings me to my final bit of guess work. Understand now that this is total and complete theory and imagination and that I understand that we were never meant to actually poke the astrophysics of the Borderlands universe this much with a stick.

My theory is that Elpis, somewhat similarly to Earth’s moon, is locked in a semi-static orbit (possibly intentionally and artificially by the Eridians) in such a way that one side is always positioned in such a way as to be struck by the light of Hephaestus and reflect it onto the dark side of Pandora.

Furthermore, that side is always the same side, in the same way that we always see the same face of the moon. That section of Elpis then is basically one constant raging firestorm encompassing around 40% of the moon’s surface.

It’s only the insane cold and lack of any real atmosphere on the permanently dark side that keeps the entire moon from going up, basically. And it’s on that side that all the settlements are located and where people live. Or at least try to.

Yet in the Pre-Sequel you can clearly see a distant sun from the surface of Elpis. Thus, this means, I believe, that Hephaestus has a twin, and is only one of a binary star system.

Space Mission: Mars

Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun and the second-smallest planet in the Solar System, after Mercury and Earth. Mars is also called the red planet. Mars have 2 moons surrounding it. I’ve searched that Mars and Earth have the same landmass.

It is amazing to create an landscape and home to Mars but I’ve searched that is an extremely cold place, high radiation levels, lack of oxygen and frequent to dust storms into consideration. Designing a base on Mars that can withstand the elements and maybe even make you feel at home will be astonishing.

@uruhas-thigh-gap so I had a dream that the GazettE was coming to Pittsburgh PA so of COURSE I was there but then I remembered that you were gonna be there too (even though it’s like a 24 hour flight from Australia LOLOLOL) and so I kept looking and looking and looking for you before the show and I FFIINALLYY found you in line. (and oh my god lemme just say you looked so cute all decked out in vk clothes but anyway.) I actually gave you the little duckie plushie then and oh my god you were freaking out cuz it was really really cute. so then to thank me, you snuck me into VIP early entrance and when we got into the hall we pushed our way to front row of the pit. (We’re like the two smallest people on the planet so idk how we managed that but hey, dreamland, anything is possible🤣🤣) unfortunately I woke up before the concert actually started but it was like the most hilarious thing cuz you like literally bull-dozed people to get to front row on the right side to stand Infront of uruha. And the whole time while we were waiting we just like freaked the heck out about being there and you sneaking me in and our fondness of uruha.

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Whats the Surface of Mercury Like?

The surface of Mercury is marred by an impressive number of craters. The cratering is deeper than on most terrestrial planets because of its lack of an atmosphere. A thicker atmosphere would have slowed impacting bodies, making the craters more shallow. Less than half of the surface of Mercury was mapped until recent images from MESSENGER were interpreted by NASA.

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MARS is the fourth planet from the Sun, and the last of our terrestrial planets. It is the second smallest planet in the solar system- after Mercury. It is usually referred to as the “Red Planet” because of its red surface. Iron oxide that is found on the planets surface is the reason for it’s red colour. It has a thin atmosphere, and has craters on its surface similar to the Moon, but also has features like Earth (polar ice caps, valleys etc). It also has seasons similar to Earth, and similarly to us, the planet’s tilt is what causes the seasons.

Mars has 2 moons- Phobos and Deimos. It is believed that they are captured asteroids. Mars has something called the Mars trojans. They’re a group of objects that share Mars’ orbit. It is uncertain how they got to be there, but they are all placed in parts of Mars’ orbit where the gravity from the planet, its moons and the other trojans are all balanced.

The sunsets on Mars are blue, whereas the ones on Earth are red. The reason for this is due to the dust on Mars. The particles are the right size to make it easier for blue light to penetrate the atmosphere rather than red light (like on Earth). I love Earth sunsets, but the ones on Mars would be way cooler!

Got any other questions/facts about Mars? Send me a message and we can talk about it! Stay tuned for tomorrow’s planet!

Hey, remember Girl Meets Pluto? Where Riley says she would kiss Pluto on the face?

And for the rest of the episode Riley referred to Pluto as a girl?

And how Riley said that Pluto was the smallest planet with the biggest heart?

Is it possible that there was a reason Riley loves Pluto so much? Maybe Pluto reminds her of her tiny friend, so far away from every one… remind you of anyone?

Mercury is the smallest terrestrial planet, only 40 percent larger than the Moon. Mercury is close to the Sun, but it rotates slowly and has no atmosphere to hold and transport heat. Hence, its surface reaches 470 degrees Celsius during the day and cools to minus 180 degrees Celsius at night.

Over billions of years, its gravitational interaction with the Sun has slowed its rotation rate so much that, when the Sun rises at any place on Mercury, it’s about half an Earth-year later before it sets there. We learned a lot about Mercury from the Spacecraft Mariner 10, which photographed about half of Mercury’s surface in the mid-1970s.

Learn more about the planets in our solar system

Image: NASA