What percentage of the solar system's mass is found in the sun? How is this calculated?

1 Answer
Jan 14, 2017

The Sun contains over 99.8% of the Solar System's mass.


The Sun contains most of the material in the Solar System. It accounts for over 99.8% of the Solar System's mass.

The majority of the remaining mass is contained in the giant planets Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune.

We can determine the masses of the giant planets, or any other planet with at least one moon, by making observations of the giant planets' moons. If we can determine the orbital period #P# and the semi-major axis distance #a# of the moon from the planet, then we can determine the mass of the planet #M# using Newton's form of Kepler's third law.


Where #G# is the gravitational constant.