The Earth and Universe

under construction

The various syllabus statements cover very different quantities of material. I'm sorry there aren't any pictures yet. You need to read this page in conjunction with block 4.6 of the syllabus specification.     xxx  represents a page number in England, (3rd edition).

1 Recall the names and properties of bodies in the Universe, to include
  • the planets in the Solar System
  • comets
  • meteors
  • stars, galaxies and natural satellites


2 Explain that the orbit time of a planet depends on its distance from the Sun.     76
3 Explain that the Moon remains in Orbit around the Earth, and the planets orbit the Sun, because of the gravitational attractive forces between them.      74
4 Interpret given information about developments in ideas about models of the Solar System.      85
5 Explain that the orbit period of an artificial satellite increases with increasing height above the Earth's surface. 
6 Describe the variation in gravitational force with distance.     74
7 Explain the variation in speed of a comet during its orbit around the Sun.   
8 Describe how stars evolve over a long time scale from formation to final state. [Candidates should be familiar with the following terms: fusion, red giant, white dwarf, supernova, neutron star, black hole]     78
9 Explain that theories for the origin of the Universe must take into account that:
  • light from other galaxies is shifted to the red end of the spectrum
  • the further away galaxies are, the greater the red shift.


10 Recognise that one way of explaining this is that:
  • other galaxies are moving away from us very quickly
  • galaxies furthest from us are moving fastest.


11 Explain how knowledge of the rate of expansion of the Universe enables its age to be estimated.      88
12 Explain that there are possible futures for the Universe depending on the amount of mass in the Universe and the speed at which the galaxies are moving apart.     88
13 Interpret given information about developments in ideas on the origin of the Universe. [No recall is expected.]      88
14 Discuss how scientists are trying to find evidence for life on other planets in the Solar System and  elsewhere in the Universe.     88