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Vocapedia > Space > Orbits > Elliptical orbits





Why Are Planetary Orbits Elliptical?

Video        Science ABC        13 November 2020


Planetary orbits are elliptical

because gravitational interaction over time changes

the delicate balance of mass, velocity and distance from the star

which otherwise keeps planetary orbit circular.


For a very long time,

from Ptolemy to the age of Copernicus,

it was widely believed and accepted that planets

in our Solar System revolved in a perfectly circular path.


Because the circle was presumed

to be an ideal shape for planetary bodies to orbit.


But then in the seventeenth century

in his seminal book Astronomia Nova,

Johannes Kepler rebutted this very idea.


He put forth his own theory pertaining to planetary motion.


He theorized that planetary bodies orbit

in an elliptical path with the Sun sitting at one of the foci of that ellipse.


In this video we will try to understand

what makes these planetary orbits elliptical.




















WHY Are Most CELESTIAL ORBITS ELLIPTICAL?        WildAC        15 June 2018





WHY Are Most CELESTIAL ORBITS ELLIPTICAL?        Video        WildAC        15 June 2018



























elliptical orbit        USA












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