Glossary term: Astronomical Unit

Description: An astronomical unit (AU) is a convenient unit of distance equal to exactly 149,597,870.7 kilometers (km). This is approximately the average distance between the Earth and the Sun, which was a previous definition of the AU. The AU is often used to measure distances in the Solar System and in other planetary or stellar systems. For example, Neptune orbits about 30 AU from the Sun

Related Terms:

See this term in other languages

Term and definition status: This term and its definition have been approved by a research astronomer and a teacher

The OAE Multilingual Glossary is a project of the IAU Office of Astronomy for Education (OAE) in collaboration with the IAU Office of Astronomy Outreach (OAO). The terms and definitions were chosen, written and reviewed by a collective effort from the OAE, the OAE Centers and Nodes, the OAE National Astronomy Education Coordinators (NAECs) and other volunteers. You can find a full list of credits here. All glossary terms and their definitions are released under a Creative Commons CC BY-4.0 license and should be credited to "IAU OAE".