30 Interesting Facts About Earth

Earth, our home planet.

Earth is the planet we live on, the third of eight planets in our solar system and the only known place in the universe to support life.

It offers liquid water, an oxygen-rich atmosphere, and protection from the Sun's harmful radiation.

Here are 30 interesting facts about our home planet you might not have known.


The Earth formed roughly 4.6 billion years ago, and life probably began between 3.5 and 3.9 billion years ago.

The Earth is the only planet in our solar system not named after either a Greek or Roman God.

The name Earth comes from a combination of Old English and Germanic and is derived from "eor(th)e" and "ertha," which means "ground."

The Earth is associated with the Goddess Terra Mater (Gaea in Greek Mythology), who was the first Goddess on Earth and the mother of Uranus.

Earth is the only planet in our solar system to have water in all three of its forms (Liquid, Solis & Gas).

While the Earth appears to be round when viewed from the vantage point of space, it is actually closer to an ellipsoid.

In the past, there have been many misconceptions about the Earth, such as when people thought it was the center of the Solar System and that all other planets orbited it!
Or when they thought it was flat and that a person could sail off the edge by sailing over the horizon!

The planet Earth weighs approximately 5,974,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 kilograms (nearly 6 septillion kg).

Of all the planets in our solar system, the Earth is the most dense, with a density of roughly 5.52 grams per cubic centimeter.
The second densest planet in our solar system is Mercury, with a density of 5.427 grams per cubic centimeter.

It takes the planet Earth about 23 hours, 56 minutes, and 4 seconds hours to complete one rotation on its axis. Astronomers call this a sidereal day.

A year on Earth is not 365 days, as widely thought, but rather 365.2564 days. The extra 0.2564 days is added onto February once every four years, which is known as a leap year.

The Earth's rotation is gradually slowing down.
However, it is slowing down so very minimally (approximately 17 milliseconds per hundred years) that it will be about 140 million years before the Earth experiences 25-hour days.

70% of the Earth's surface is covered with water!

Of the 70% of water covering the Earth, only 3% is fresh, and the other 97% is salted.

Of this 3%, more than 2% resides in ice sheets and glaciers, meaning less than 1% is in lakes and rivers.

Due to the amount of water covering the Earth, it would be one of the brightest planets to look upon from a distance due to how the water reflects the Sun's rays.

One-third of the Earth's surface is either partially or totally desert.

The Queen of the U.K. is the legal owner of one-sixth of the Earth's land surface!

The Earth's axis is on a tilt of 23.4 degrees.

The Earth consists of 3 different layers: the Crust, The Mantle, and The Core. And each of these three different layers is made up of different elements.

The Crust consists of 32% Iron, 30% Oxygen, 15% Silicon, 14% Magnesium, 3% Sulphur, and 2% Nickel – which totals 96%. The other 4% is made up of trace amounts of Calcium, Aluminium, and other miscellaneous elements.

The Crust consists of different plates floating perpetually on the Earth's mantle, moving at the same rate that a person's fingernails grow! However, tectonic plates move at different speeds and in different directions.

The Mantle consists of 44.8% Oxygen, 21.5% Silicon, and 22.8 Magnesium, although it also contains trace amounts of Iron, Aluminium, Calcium, Sodium, and Potassium.

The Mantle is the largest layer of the Earth, approximately 2,970 km thick – this makes up about 84% of the Earth's total volume.

The Earth's core consists of two layers, an outer layer, and an inner layer. Although the specific percentages are unknown, the outer and inner layers of the Earth's Core consist mainly of Iron and Nickel.

The outer layer of the Earth's core is believed to be liquid, whereas the inner layer of the Core is believed to be a solid as hot as the Sun!

Due to the unique Nickel-Iron properties of the Earth's Core, when coupled with its rotation, The Earth is surrounded by a powerful magnetic field that protects it from the effects of Solar Wind.

The Earth is struck by lightning 100 times per second – that's 8.6 million times per day!

The Earth is the only place in our solar system where a Solar Eclipse can happen.

Theoretically, if you drilled a tunnel straight through the Earth and jumped in, it would take you about 42 minutes to get to the other side!

Space / Wikipedia / ScienceLine.ucsb.edu / Universe Today / Britannica / NASA