::Ecliptic coordinate system


Ecliptic::system    Equinox::bmatrix    Epsilon::ecliptic    Style::plane    Vernal::equator    Earth::begin


The ecliptic coordinate system is a celestial coordinate system commonly used for representing the positions and orbits of Solar System objects. Because most planets (except Mercury), and many small Solar System bodies have orbits with small inclinations to the ecliptic, it is convenient to use it as the fundamental plane. The system's origin can be either the center of the Sun or the center of the Earth, its primary direction is towards the vernal (northbound) equinox, and it has a right-handed convention. It may be implemented in spherical coordinates or rectangular coordinates.<ref> {{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }}</ref>

Earth-centered ecliptic coordinates as seen from outside the celestial sphere. Ecliptic longitude (red) is measured along the ecliptic from the vernal equinox. Ecliptic latitude (yellow) is measured perpendicular to the ecliptic. A full globe is shown here, although high-latitude coordinates are seldom seen except for certain comets and asteroids.

Ecliptic coordinate system sections
Intro   Primary direction   Spherical coordinates   Rectangular coordinates    Conversion between celestial coordinate systems    See also    External links   Notes and references  

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