About the world around us: what is the shape of the Earth?


2019-09-25 20:20:37




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The Astronomical beliefs of all humanity evolved over the centuries. Starting with Ancient Egypt and perhaps even earlier civilizations, scholars have directed their eyes to the sky, seeking to know more about the structure of our world. Interested, of course, the shape and size of the planet Earth.

Since then, we have gone forward a lot. Enough facts now can say for sure.

what is the shape of Land

And one of these questions: what shape has the Earth? The history of different ideas about the shape our planet is long and extremely interesting. It was built distinguished scholars of our time, the middle Ages and of Antiquity. For the truth (that followed them) they were persecuted and even died. But perceived truth is not refused.

Now what is the shape of the Earth, 4th grade school will tell you with full confidence.

Let us remember how really things are with the forms of our home planet.

what shape is the planet Earth

Form of the Earth

In the past century, mankind has managed to make a great leap forward launched the first spacecraft in distant space provided. Those brought (sent) scientists photos of the planet. She was a beautiful blue heavenly body, but the form has undergone several amendments.

So, for the new, the most reliable information about the planet, we know that the Earth is slightly oblate. That is, it is not a ball and an ellipsoid of rotation or geoid. The choice between these two terms is important only in astrophysics, geodesy, space. Numerical expression of the characteristics of the planet, it will be necessary for accurate calculations. And then the shape of the Earth has its own characteristics.

Numerical description of the shape of the planet

For the section of General knowledge about the world, it is more usual to use the term geoid. The latter, incidentally, is Greek and means literally "something that is similar to Earth."

Interestingly, to describe the mathematical ways the shape of the Earth as an ellipsoid of rotation is not difficult. And here is how the geoid is almost impossible to get the most accurate data necessary to measure gravity at different points of the planet.

Why is the Earth oblate?

From the above, we now intend to consider some individual aspects of the whole topic. Now that we have learned, what form is the Earth in fact, it will be interesting to understand why.


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Again: our planet is slightly oblate, and is not a perfect world. Why? The answer is simple, obvious to anyone who has a basic knowledge of physics. As the Earth spins around its axis in the regions of the equator centrifugal force. Accordingly, at the poles, they can not be. Thus was made the difference in the polar and Equatorial radius: latest more some 50 km away.

what is the shape the Earth grade 4

The Earth's Orbit: what is the shape?

As we know, the planet doesn't revolve around its axis, and makes a long journey around the center of the Solar system. The imaginary line on which it moves in space, is called the orbit. We learned what shape is the planet Earth. Also found out that she bought it because of the rotation.

But what is the shape of Earth's orbit? Around the Sun it makes a way in the form of an ellipse, while in different seasons at different distances from the sun. From staying in a particular area of the orbit depends on the season on the planet.

When the planet is farthest from the Sun, called aphelion, the closest to the perihelion (both words of Greek origin).

what shape is Earth's orbit

Ideas of ancient civilizations

Finally we will our article bright figurative paintings, which we outlined predecessors of modern civilization. A fantasy they have, I must say, was glorious.

The question "What shape has the Earth?" an ancient Babylonian would argue that this is a huge mountain on one of the slopes which is their country. Above it rises the dome of the sky, and it was hard as a rock.

The Indians were convinced that the Earth rests on four elephants, which holds on its back the turtle, floating in a milky sea. The heads of elephants - the four sides of the world.

At Only 8-7 th century BC, people have gradually come to the conclusion that the Earth is something separate from all sides, and not worth anything. To it pushed nightly disappearance of the Sun, in front of which was tested in awe.


Roughly speaking, the Earth was round. For the layman this will be enough, but not for certain Sciences. In geodesy, Astronautics, astrophysics need accurate data for calculations. And then it will be useful to precise the answer to the question, what is the shape of the Earth. And it is a geoid, or an ellipsoid of rotation. The planet is under the influence of centrifugal forces oblate. Consider the exact data about the planet it is important to obtain the correct calculations.

Long gone are the days when the Land was uplifted on the back of elephants or was it a flat surface. Let us be privy to the truth about the world and we remain worthy of their time!

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