Here's What The Sun Looks Like From Every Planet In Our Solar System

Our Solar System is a very magnificent location. It's a varied area filled with stunning views and natural marvels, whether it's Mercury's pockmarked volcanic surface, Mars' dusty red plains, Saturn's magnificent rings, or even our own blues and viridians.

To be sure, we would be lost without the Sun, as artist and illustrator Ron Miller's series of genuinely amazing renderings of our nearest star – as viewed from each planet, including the unhappy Pluto – serve to remind us of that. He has spent the better part of four decades drawing the black reaches of space, both near and far, and has produced the most accurate renditions of the Sun as viewed from these faraway planets as conceivable.

“I’ve taken care in not only making sure the Sun is depicted realistically, but also the surfaces of the planets and satellites as well,” Miller told.

Despite the fact that Pluto lies 7.5 billion kilometers (about 4.7 billion miles) from Earth at its most distant point, the Sun seems exceptionally brilliant. “While the Sun is smaller, it is still an immensely brilliant source of light,” Miller added. “The light levels on the surfaces around you [on Pluto] would be dusk-like, but the sun itself would still be a very bright object – just a small one.”

According to physical rules, the Sun's brightness is proportional to the square of its relative distance from it. Therefore, if you are now half as near to the Sun as you were before, the perceived brightness will be a quarter of its previous value. (1/2)2 Equals 1/4, as you can see.

This implies that as you go away from the Sun, its brightness diminishes substantially. The fact that it is still visible when you reach Pluto is a wonderful monument to the immense strength of our closest thermonuclear star furnace.

The Sun as viewed from Mercury, which is 60 million kilometers from the Sun and represents 39% of the Earth-Sun distance. Mercury's Sun is about three times the size of the Sun on Earth.

The Sun as seen (almost) from Venus, about 108 million kilometers from the Sun (72% of the distance from Earth to the Sun). Seen from beneath Venus’ dense, sulfuric acid-laden clouds, the Sun is no more than a dimly glowing patch in the perpetual overcast.

Earth, which is 150 million kilometers (93 million miles) from the Sun. If you’ve ever seen a solar eclipse, this sight will be very familiar to you.

Mars orbits the Sun at a distance of 230 million kilometers, or about 1.5 times further than Earth. But it is not the distance that reduces the visibility of the Sun, but the strong winds that carry dust up into the outer confines of atmosphere of the Red Planet.

The Sun sinks below the horizon in this stunning panoramic view captured by NASA's Spirit Mars rover in 2005. NASA/JPL/Texas A&M/Cornell 

This is what the Sun looks like from Europa, one of Jupiter’s moons. It is much, much further away, at 779 million kilometers from the Sun (5.2 times greater than the distance between the Sun and the Earth).

The Sun as seen from Saturn, about 1.5 billion kilometers from the Sun. It is about 9.5 times farther than the distance from Earth to the Sun. Here, water and gas crystals, including ammonia, refract sunlight, creating beautiful optical effects such as haloes and sundogs.

The Sun as seen from Ariel, one of Uranus’s moons. Uranus is about 2.9 billion kilometers from the Sun, or about 19 times farther than the distance from Earth to the Sun.

The Sun as seen from Triton, one of Neptune’s moons. Neptune is about 4.5 billion kilometers from the Sun. That’s about 30 times farther than the distance from Earth to the Sun.

From the perspective of the planet furthest from our solar system, the Sun is little more than a tiny point of light. Pluto is 6 billion kilometers from the Sun (40 times the distance between it and Earth), which means that the light reaching it is 1600 times weaker than that which we receive here.


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