Our solar system: Where we live

When you look at the sky at night you can see millions of stars, which are known as the Milky Way. Our Sun is one of the 100 billion stars in our galaxy. More than a million Earth-sized planets could fit into the Sun.

The Earth and the other planets in our solar system orbit the Sun and get light and heat from it. It takes eight minutes for light to travel from the Sun to Earth, five and a half hours for it to reach Pluto and more than four years to reach the next star, Alpha Centuria.

Each planet moves on its own orbit around the Sun. It takes the Earth one year to go around the Sun and it takes Pluto 248 Earth-years to do the same.

Mercury is the closest planet to the Sun. Venus spins the opposite way to the Earth, so the Sun rises in the west and sets in the east. The next planet is ours. It's the only planet that we know has life - maybe there is life on another planet but we don't know yet. Mars is like a bright red star. Jupiter is the biggest planet in our solar system and has fifteen more moons than the Earth. To reach it from the Earth you have to go through the asteroid belt that lies between Mars and Jupiter. Saturn looks beautiful with its coloured rings, but it is very cold and has lots of strong storms. The last three planets are Uranus, Neptune and Pluto. Pluto is the farthest. They are all part of our solar system.