solar system

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  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈsəʊl.ə ˌsɪs.təm/
  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈsoʊ.lɚ ˌsɪs.təm/
  • (file)

Proper noun[edit]

solar system

  1. Alternative letter-case form of Solar System; the Sun and all the objects in orbit around it.



solar system (plural solar systems)

  1. Any collection of heavenly bodies including a star or binary star, and any lighter stars, brown dwarfs, planets, and other objects in orbit.
    • 1980, Carl Sagan, Cosmos: A Personal Voyage:
      The history of our study of our solar system shows us clearly that accepted and conventional ideas are often wrong, and that fundamental insights can arise from the most unexpected sources.
    • 1992, J. Laskar, page 31 in, Sylvio Ferraz-Mello (editor), "Chaos, resonance, and collective dynamical phenomena in the solar system", International Astronomical Union Symposium,
      I would like to stress out that the meaning of unstable for our solar system is very different than for another solar system.
    • 2001, Stuart Ross Taylor, Solar system evolution: a new perspective, 2nd edition, page xiii:
      Every satellite has turned out to differ in some significant feature from its neighbor: " [] the sense of novelty would probably not have been greater if we had explored a different solar system".
    Synonym: planetary system
  2. Ellipsis of solar power system. (electric power system that supplies usable solar power by means of photovoltaics)
    • 2022 April 19 (last accessed), “Planning a Home Solar Electric System”, in, U.S. Department of Energy:
      Almost half of all U.S. households are unable to host a rooftop solar system because they rent or have inadequate roof space.

Usage notes[edit]

  • When used to refer specifically to our own planetary system, it is used with the and generally capitalized (as the Solar system or the Solar System). Other systems are then known as star systems or planetary systems, or specified by the name of the individual star (the Alpha Centauri system).


See also[edit]