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Conceptual Formation of the
Solar System
Basic Ingredients:
Cloud of Dust and Gas
Exploding Star
Step 1
Exploding star (or some other disturbance caused gas
and dust to squeeze together
Squeezing allows gravity to pull dust and gas closer
Step 2
Cloud begins to spin as it collapses
Step 3
Cloud grows hotter and denser in center, with a disk
of gas and dust surrounding the core
Disk gets cooler and thinner as you move away from
the center
Step 4
Dust and gas began to stick together and form clumps
Clumps eventually form into planets
Step 5
Near center, where it was hot, only rocky or metal
material could stand great heat
Increasing Heat
Decreasing Heat
Icy matter settled in the outer region of the disk
Scientific Speak: Formation of the
Solar System
Nebula – Cloud of dust or gas in space
Theory: The sun and planets formed from a
rotating disk of dust and gases
Nebular Theory
See Steps 1 & 2
Protoplanetary Disk
Disk of gas and dust surrounding the newly
forming star (see Step 3)
Planetesimals are small, irregularly shaped bodies
formed by colliding matter (see Steps 4 & 5).
Summary of the Formation of
the Solar System