I know the basics of solar system like how earth moves around sun, and that we have so many planets, elliptical orbit of earth, and how far is sun from earth etc etc. I want to take a step back and understand how mankind has been able to construct this knowledge of solar system piece by piece.Questions:
-- Sun is something we see on daily basis, so it would not be strange if humankind got curious to know about it, and made theories,observations,maths to prove it. How did Copernicus and others came up with the theory that earth moves around sun in elliptical orbit. How did they prove it? Has there been any actual way by which we have actually observed sun being in center and earth moving around in elliptical orbit. or we made such theory and result of this theory have been proved by other observations like day,night,change in weather at a point and at different points on earth.
-- How did human have an inkling that there are other stuff on space apart from sun and moon and some stars, like mars,jupiter and other planets, because these planets are not visible from earth. Did human accidently bump into these planets while moving around in spacecraft like they bumped into America.
-- When was the first man made satellite made? When did the first spacecraft go into space. Weren't people afraid to step their foot outside their spacecraft in an utter uncertainty now knowing what waits them on an alien planet, living condition on it etc.
-- How has the distance between sun and earth been calculated? and speed of light? and size of sun?
-- What are the most used tools used to acquiring such knowledge apart from telescope? What is the range of most powerful telescopes that man has made?
-- And why are humans so curious to know more and more about Mars in particular? Is it because it is relatively easier to study Mars for some scientific reason? how we do scientist intend to put their Mars knowledge to practical use?
-- What is the difference between spacecraft and rocket? What is the application of each?