The Sweden Solar System
The Sweden Solar System (SSS) is the world's largest model of our planetary system. The Sun is represented by the Globe in Stockholm, the largest spherical building in the world, and the planets are lined up in direction north from here.
Note! To navigate within the pages for Sweden Solar System, use the links in this column.
Distances and sizes are scaled according to 1:20 million, and the inner planets are all in the Stockholm area. The outer planets follow in the same direction with for instance Neptune in Söderhamn and the dwarf planet Pluto in Delsbo, 300 km from the Globe. A number of minor planets and comets also populate SSS, which now extends from the very south to the very north of Sweden. There is a host institution for each model. SSS is a pedagogical instrument and conveys a direct feeling of the enormous distances in space, and how small the planets are compared to the Sun. Art, mythology and science merge in this project, and SSS connects many different places and different type of activities around Sweden. Nils Brenning, at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, and Gösta Gahm, at the Stockholm University, started the project and coordinate new activities. For more information contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Asteroid Eros
- Asteroid Saltis
- Asteroid 5025 PL
- Transneptunian Ixion
- Transneptunian Eris
- Transneptunian Sedna
- Halley's comet
- Swift-Tuttle's comet
- The Termination Shock
Diameter: 71 m (solar disk) + the corona (the Sun's outer atmosphere)
The Globe Arena in Stockholm is the largest spherical building in the world, and it represents the Sun in the SSS. This picture shows the Globe lit by an animation, which included a sequence showing flares on the solar surface, during the inauguration of the International Year of Astronomy 2009.
Stockholms stadsmuseum, Slussen
Diameter: 25 cm
Distance from Globen: 2,9 km
The model of Mercury is heated to symbolize its closeness to the Sun. Craters are depicted, and on the support structure various symbols are seen, like for the orbital drift in accordance with Einstein's theory of relativity.
Diameter: 62 cm
Distance from Globen: 5,5 km
A new model of Venus, replacing the one stolen in 2011, is temporarily placed at the Institution for Space and Plasma Physics at the Kungl. Tekniska Högskolan, Stockholm (also depicted at Observatoriemuseet, Stockholm)
The model of Venus at the Observatory Museeum in central Stockholm was made at the workshop at Liljevalchs Museeum.
Cosmonova, Naturhistoriska riksmuseet, Stockholm
Diameter: 65 cm /18 cm
Distance from Globen: 7,6 km
The model of our planet Earth is located at the entrance of the space theatre Cosmonova at the Natural History Museum. On the background screen, images taken from space of selected areas of the the planet can be shown.
The model of the Moon, made by Peter Varhelyi, is attached to a pillar in the ticket hall in the museum.
Diameter: 35 cm
Distance from Globen: 11,6 km
Mars is connected to a plate in steel symbolizing the Earth. Chemical symbols for common compounds on Mars can be found on the sphere.
Diameter: 7,3 m
Distance from Globen: 40 km
Jupiter was previously represented by an arrangement of flowers outside Sky City at Arlanda Airport. Plans for a new 3D model at another location are advancing.
Diameter: 6,1 m
Distance from Globen: 73 km
The planet Saturn will eventually crown a school planetarium in Uppsala. However, a first step was taken in 2010 when an artistic model of the moon Titan was inaugurated in central Uppsala at the Celsius House, where the 18th century astronomer Anders Celsius worked. In addition, several Saturn moons have been given form by pupils in school classes in the area.
Diameter: 2,6 m
Distance from Globen: 146 km
A symbolic and playful outdoor model of Uranus was inaugurated in Oct 2012 (see picture) in Lövstabruk south of Gävle. The model was built in steel by Forsmark Mechanical Workshop at the Forsmark nuclear plant located close to Lövstabruk, and where the element Uranium plays an important role. The unusual tilt of Uranus’ axis is marked.
Diameter: 2,5 m
Distance from Globen: 229 km
A sculpture of an asteroid discovered by A. Brandeker in 2000 with a telescope at the Stockholm Observatory, now ”Kunskapsskolan”, was unveiled in 2010.. The object was named "Saltis", after the nickname of Saltsjöbaden.
Diameter: 12 cm
Distance from Globen: 300 km
Pluto and Charon are supported by two tomb-like pillars reminding of the mythological meaning of Pluto (Hades), the god of the underworld. One can also be reminded of the meteorite impact that took place here 90 million years ago, when all life became extinct over a large area, and from which the Dellen lake system formed.
Pluto is not classified as a planet anymore. It is a dwarf planet.
Eros, the god of love, was inaugurated on a Valentine's day during a close encounter by a NASA space probe. The model, only 1.5 mm in size, was designed and exhibited as a school project.
Diameter: less than 1 mm
Distance from Globen: 17 km
A sculpture of an asteroid discovered by A. Brandeker in 2000 with a telescope at the Stockholm Observatory, now ”Kunskapsskolan”, was unveiled in 2010. The object was named "Saltis", after the nickname of Saltsjöbaden.
The asteroid Palomar-Leiden 5025 is a small dot on a relief describing SSS and placed in a park in Knivsta with "cosmic" sculptures by Eric Ståhl standing in front of the relief.
Ixion is one of the largest minor planets discovered by a team including Swedish scientists. The model is shown in the science centre Technicus in Söderhamn..
The model of Eris, the goddess of conflict, reflects an ancient story when Eris initiated a big quarrel starting with a controversial inscription on a golden apple.
Teknikens hus, Luleå
Distance from Globen: 912 km
The model of the dwarf planet Sedna, created by Arto Koskitalo, was inaugurated in 2005 at the science centre ”Teknikens Hus” located in Luleå in northern Sweden, not far from the arctic cirle. In arctic mythology, Sedna represented the ”goddess of the frozen sees” from where she supplied the eskimos with seals and whales. Sedna is comparable to Pluto in size, and belongs to a distant swarm of minor planets called the Kuiper Belt
Diameter: several depictions
Distance from Globen: 260 km
Comet Halley was inaugurated at the science centre Balthazar in Skövde on December 2009. Halley is prepresented by three outdoor models inspired by drawings made by school children, and in addition one indoor model formed by laser in a block of glass. At this place the comet is at its largest distance from the Sun.
Diameter: < 1 cm
Distance from Globen: 390 km
Swifft-Tuttle has an elongated orbit, and in SSS the comet passes at its largest distance from the Sun (aphelium) at this location in the science centre Kreativum on the Swedish southcoast.
Institutet för rymdfysik, Kiruna
Distance from Globen: 950 km
The distant interface between the solar wind and the surrounding galactic gas, the terminal shock, has been manifested in Kiruna. A future sculpture is envisioned to express this phenomenon reminiscent of aurorae frequently seen in northern Sweden.
May 15, 2013
Page editor: Hannes Jensen
Source: Hannes Jensen