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quote:Originally posted by daveshortsI am no expert, but I think some of the reason is that the gas giants are mostly made up of... gas, closer to the sun this will get blown away by the solar wind, leaving the less volatile rocky minerals. I guess most of the stuff that was in the inner solar system got blown into the outer.Also remember that the circumference of an orbit increases as you go out, so you have more volume to collect stuff from even if the density is lower... I don't know the formulae so couldn't say which way it will go
quote:The inner planets are small because the temperature in the solar nebula was too high to allow ices to form. This limited the composition of the planets to NiFe and silicates. Further out, beyond the 'snow line' ice formed a significant part of the proto-giants. The increased bulk led to a runaway expansion as their larger gravitational field pulled in more and more material.
quote:Originally posted by DoctorBeaverAh, so there's an inner limit for the formation of gas planets rather than an outer limit for the formation of rocky planets?