|MadSci Network: Astronomy|
I have heard that all motion is relative, and that any point can be the stationary point that things move around. For example, if a car drives by a tree, you could validly assign the car the stationary position, and the road and the tree as moving. If that is the case, how can we say that our solar system is definitely heliocentric? Isn't that just one way of describing the motion, and couldn't one choose earth, or any other point in the solar system, as the stationary point which the sun and other plantets move in realtion to? If all this is correct, why is it so much more convienient to describe the motion of the planets and stars if we assume a heliocentric model? I ask because I've been reading about the history of the heliocentric system in the popular science books "Foucault's Pendulum" and "Heavenly Intrigue" and can't see why the heliocentric system is 'correct' rather than just a convienient system of describing planetary motion. Thanks for your consideration.
Re: If motion is relative, why is solar system considered heliocentric?
Try the links in the MadSci Library for more information on Astronomy.