New Horizons is moving at a speed of around 80,000 kilometers per hour. When they are closest, it takes around 40 days to get from Earth to Mercury. Of course, spaceships do not travel in a straight line between planets; instead, they pick the path that utilizes the least amount of energy, which takes them much longer... much longer. If New Horizons were traveling directly from Earth to Mercury, then its trip would take about 75 years.
Mercury is always invisible from Earth because it goes behind the sun every 48 hours. So even though it is the third-closest planet to the sun (after Venus and Mars), it never gets direct sunlight. Instead, it gets the light that comes from the other planets in our solar system.
Earth's moon always blocks out part of Mercury when it is in the sky, but over time this effect changes. As you go farther from the sun, its glow becomes less and less until you reach Mercury, which does not receive any sunlight at all. The only way to see Mercury with the naked eye is from afar, like from the Moon or another planet. It took Galileo two hours with a telescope to see his first glimpse of Mercury going by Jupiter.
The best time to observe Mercury is just before dawn or after dusk. It is a bright starlike object, so it should be easy to spot with the unaided eye.
Mariner 10 traveled from Earth to Mercury in 147 days. More recently, on August 3, 2004, NASA launched the MESSENGER mission to examine Mercury in orbit. On January 14th, 2008, it performed its maiden flyby. It takes 1,260 days to get from Earth to Mercury. The trip takes about 87 days when measured from MESSENGER's first orbit of Venus.
Venus orbits the Sun every 2257 days and rotates on its axis once every 72 hours, so it has two days that are almost identical. The day-night cycle is believed to be the source of most of the planet's surface changes. As a result, many features on Venus are still active today, such as lava flows, volcanic vents, and large clouds composed of sulfuric acid droplets trapped under an atmosphere of sulfur dioxide.
Mercury orbits the Sun every 88 days and rotates on its axis twice during each orbit. Because of this rapid rotation, one side of Mercury is always facing the Sun, while the other is always dark. As a result, one side develops ice caps, while the other heats up relentlessly.
The average distance between the planets is estimated to be about 40 million kilometers (25 million miles). But because of their relative distances from the Sun, some periods will be longer than others.
The times it took/will take to reach several planets and the Moon are listed below (New Horizons is still on its way). The planets are all in orbit around the Sun. To travel to Mars, Jupiter, and so on, you must add energy to move away from the sun's gravity. To go to Venus and Mercury, you must expend energy. Energy comes from chemical fuels or solar power.
Earth 0.845 AU = 1.5 billion km Earth takes 9 months 27 days Earth Rotates on Its Axis, but Not on Its Orbit Earth Rotation Speed Is 23 mph (3 m/s) Earth Takes 365 Days 5 hours 12 minutes 46 seconds
Mars 2.39 AU = 75 million km Mars takes 687 days 22 hours 37 minutes 48 secs
Jupiter 10.49 AU = 456 million km Jupiter takes 11 years 4 days 20 hours 56 minutess
Saturn 9.54 AU = 3455 million km Saturn takes 29 years 14 days 18 hours 44 minutess
Uranus 7.19 AU = 270 million km Uranus takes 17 years 19 days 8 hours 28 minutess
Neptune 9.54 AU = 3455 million km Neptune takes 49 years 16 days 6 hours 44 minutess
The Kepler space telescope detected the exoplanet, and NASA announced its discovery on July 23, 2015. The planet is around 1,800 light-years from the solar system. It would take nearly 30 million years to reach there at the speed of the New Horizons spacecraft, which is around 59,000 km/h (37,000 mph).
Earth 2 has six planets. They are all similar in size to Earth but made of rock instead of iron. None of them have been visited by any alien life yet. However, this may change soon if NASA's next mission to Pluto succeeds.
Pluto is a dwarf planet that is not as big as Earth's moon but larger than many asteroids. It was first discovered in 1930 and was named after the Greek god of the dead.
In 2011, NASA's New Horizons spacecraft flew by Pluto and gave us our first up-close look at this distant world. Scientists are already planning another mission for 2026 when Pluto will be again approach Earth's distance.
So, it takes Kepler about four and a half hours to scan the surface of one star. It can detect planets with periods ranging from three days to several years. However, most planets found by this method are large and hot like Jupiter or Uranus.
There are other ways to find small planets such as the radial velocity method or the transit method.
Mercury only makes a seven-year orbit around the sun. Astronomers utilized transit to determine the distance between the sun and Earth. When both planets are on opposite sides of the sun, they can travel up to 137 million miles (222 million kilometers). During a transits, the planet passes directly across the face of the sun from our perspective on Earth.
Transits are easy to observe with the naked eye, but most people only see them with the help of telescopes because planets are dim objects. A good telescope will let you see details on the surface of the moon and even some of its craters from Earth. But keep in mind that transiting planets are always visible in the daytime sky, so if you want to see them go over the sun's surface, you need a clear day with no clouds or light pollution.
The best time to observe a transit is when it occurs near sunrise or sunset. This gives you the longest window of opportunity to see the event. If you miss the first part of the transit, you can watch for signs of darkness in the morning newspaper or online news sites.
For example, during a transit of Venus in 2004, many people saw dark spots on Earth after sunrise. These were due to clouds that blocked out parts of the sun's disk as seen from our point of view on Venus.