science-junkie

space-facts:

The Asteroid Belt

The majority of asteroids in the solar system are found in the area of space between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter, this is known as the asteroid belt. The belt is 2.2 - 3.2 astronomical units (AU) from the Sun and is about 1 AU thick.

The Kuiper Belt

Composed primarily of small solar system bodies made mostly of ices the Kuiper Belt is roughly 30 - 55 AU from the Sun. The ices are frozen volatiles (gases) such as methane, ammonia, nitrogen and water. It also is home to the known dwarf planets Pluto, Haumea and Makemake.

The Oort Cloud

The Oort Cloud is an extended shell of icy objects that exist in the outermost reaches of the solar system. The inner limits of the Oort Cloud begin at about 2,000 AU from the Sun. The cloud itself stretches out almost a quarter of the way to the nearest star, Proxima Centauri. 

Illustrations by Laurine Moreau