If you are watching this video to learn to do the the things I show,
it would be best if you work through our Space Travel Tutorial
As usual, we recommend that you open the Planetarium in another
browser window and follow along. I will be starting from the default
settings, so you may want to do that, too. If you do, open the
Control Panel and press All Defaults.
If you click on any numbered heading, below, it will play just that
section of the video. If you are watching this video as a tutorial,
I suggest that you do that for each section and then try the
exercises at the end before going on to the next section.
In this video, we will take three tours of the Solar
System using the Dogulean Planetarium, a web page that
contains an interactive solar system simulation.
This page, dogulean.com, is the access point for the
Planetarium itself and for information about how to use it.
Now let's Enter the Planetarium.
What I mean by a "tour" is that we will visit each
planet in the Solar System in turn.
The Planetarium has two modes. In one of them, Space
Travel mode, we can visit other planets, so let's
get into that mode.
Right-click to open the Control Panel, select Space
Travel, and then right click again.
Read the description of the first tour (item (a), below)
and then try it on your own, before watching it.
1. FIRST TOUR.
For our first tour, we will go to Mercury (select on "H:"
menu), then track the Sun (select on "Tr:" menu), and View
the Sun. There it is. Then we will back out through the
planets, visiting each planet in turn.
Venus. Venus is in the way. (Increase altitude by
turning mouse wheel over Venus and the roll it out of the way
by left-dragging on it.)
Uranus is also in the way. (Roll it out of the way the
left-dragging on it. Turn on labels by double-clicking.)
There is the Sun still, surrounded by the inner planets.
close enough to a planet, the info bar for it will appear.
That completes our first tour.
Try the first tour (again) on your own.
Read the description of the second tour and then try it
on your own, before watching it.
2. SECOND TOUR.
For our second tour, we will go back in toward the Sun,
this time looking at our home planet, the planet we are on or near.
We turn off tracking by selecting "None" on the tracking
menu. And press Look Down to see our planet, Neptune. Back
away a bit so we can see it better. (Increase altitude by
turning the mouse wheel over it. The turn it by
left-dragging on it.)
Uranus. We are looking at it from the bottom of its rings
and we can see some shadows that the rings cast.
Saturn. Let's back away some more to see the rings. It
looks like they droop on the outside, but actually they are
Jupiter. And there is the Great Red Spot.
Venus. I could not find an all-planet image of Venus's
clouds, so I left it white.
Sun. The Sun is also just a yellow ball.
That completes our second tour.
Try the second tour (again) on your own.
Go back to Uranus and give it a good looking over to see
what shadows there are.
Step forward in time by years, once for Uranus and once
for Saturn, and see how the shadows change.
Read the description of the third tour and then try it
on your own, before watching it.
3. THIRD TOUR.
For our third tour, let's go outward again, tracking the
Let's turn off the lines that help us orient ourselves in
the sky, by clicking this "Lines" button. We won't need
them on this tour. We'll turn off the labels, too, by
double clicking the left mouse button.
Let's zoom in for a closer look.
The Earth and Moon look very cozy but that is because in
fact they are magnified 40 times, relative to how big they
should look in the sky and relative to the distance between
them. Right click to open the control panel and then
left-click on Planets to open the Planet settings.
According to the Planet Magnification line, Earth and Moon
are magnified 40 times relative to their distance, so they
look 40 times closer together than they should.
To make their distance realistic, we should turn the
planet magnification down to 1 and zoom in instead if we
want them to be bigger, because then they will look the
right distance apart. But then it is hard to make them
easily visible while keeping them both on the screen.
So we will compromise by setting the magnification to 10.
(Close the Control Panel by right clicking again.)
Mercury. Earth and Moon look larger from Mercury because
it is closer – it is currently on the same side of the
Venus. Venus is a bit closer than the Sun, but not as
close as Mercury, because it us just coming around toward
Mars. Mars is on the opposite side of the Sun.
So is Jupiter.
Neptune. (Zoom in bring up Earth's info bar.) The
distance from Neptune to the Earth is almost 31 times the
distance from the Earth to the Sun.
That completes our third tour.
Thank you for watching.
Try the third tour (again) on your own.
Go back to whichever planet you like best and turn planet
magnification down to 1. Step forward in time day by day or
hour by hour and watch as the Moon orbits the Earth. Adjust
zoom and direction of view to keep them both onscreen as
you do that.