How does the Earth move through space?
Ethan Siegel
2308

The relative inclination of the planets in the Solar System to the galactic plane is something that bangs my head for multiple reasons. Why was the proto-planetary disc not aligned with the galactic plane in the first place? Shouldn’t it be? Would there be any consequence to the rotation of the planets if were aligned with the plane of orbit of the Sun, would they be more easily disturbed?

Also, think of the consequences of this type of alignment for the detection of extra-solar planets! If I’m correct, we can currently only detect planets that transit their parent star in front of us. If the plane of the planet is inclined in relation to us in such a way that it prevents transits, well, we can’t know of that planet. Is there any study about the inclination of the extra-solar planets’ orbits in relation to the plane of the orbit of it’s respective stars or the galactic plane? It would be a very interesting thing to know…

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