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Short Facts about Earth!

- The Earth is the third planet from the sun in our solar system.

- It is the planet we evolved on and the only planet in our Solar System that is known to support life.

- Eratosthenes (276-194 BC) was a Greek scholar who was the first person to determine the circumference of the Earth. He compared the midsummer's noon shadow in deep wells in Syene (now Aswan on the Nile in Egypt) and Alexandria. He properly assumed that the Sun's rays are virtually parallel (since the Sun is so far away). Knowing the distance between the two locations, he calculated the circumference of the Earth to be 250,000 stadia.

- The Earth has one moon. The diameter of the moon is about one quarter of the diameter of the Earth.

- The moon may have once been a part of the Earth; it may have been broken off the Earth during a catastrophic collision of a huge body with the Earth billions of years ago.

- Earth is the densest planet in our Solar System.

- To escape the Earth's gravitational pull, an object must reach a velocity of 24,840 miles per hour (11,180 m/sec).

- The Earth's rotation is slowing down very slightly over time, about one second every 10 years.

- The temperature on Earth ranges from between -127°F to 136°F (-88°C to 58°C; 185 K to 311 K). The coldest recorded temperature was on the continent of Antarctica (Vostok in July, 1983). The hottest recorded temperature was on the continent of Africa (Libya in September, 1922).

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