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What is the 'solar system' and how does Earth fit into it?

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When we refer to the solar system we mean our sun and the bodies that are gravitationally bound to it. There are eight planets at varying distances from the sun. In order of increasing distance they are; Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. Most have moons.
In addition to these there are several minor planets, countless asteroids and occasional comets which may or may not remain a part of the solar system.
Earth is the third planet from the sun and, so far, the only place we know of where life exists.
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