Our solar system features eight planets, seen in this artist's diagram.
Source: NASA/JPL
Published: February 18, 2009

Our solar system features eight planets, seen in this artist's diagram. Although there is some debate within the science community as to whether Pluto should be classified as a Planet or a dwarf planet, the International Astronomical Union has decided on the term plutoid as a name for dwarf planets like Pluto.

This representation is intentionally fanciful, as the planets are depicted far closer together than they are in reality. Similarly, the bodies' relative sizes are inaccurate. This is done for the purpose of being able to depict the solar system and still represent the bodies with some detail. (Otherwise the sun would be a mere speck, and the planets -- even the majestic Jupiter -- would be far too small to be seen.)

ENLARGE

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