please empty your brain below

There's an easily walkable one a couple of miles long along a ridge in a southern suburb of Zurich. It illuminated our walk there a few years ago, and I think it is a brill idea to have one in London.

Changing the subject somewhat. How did the 2" orb spiders just found in the Highgate? crypt get there in the first place sometime in the last 150 year's if they can only travel in total darkness (night sky too bright even apparently) D. Tel on Monday. Perhaps a. new avenue for you, London's unusual fauna (and flora?)!
Brilliant. I particularly love the Cockfosters thing (snigger).
The Sentier des Planetes above St Luc in the Val d'Anniviers in the Swiss canton of Valais also uses this theme - as the website says, alking it gives a a scale speed three times that of light!
Bollocks. I bet you started with Uranus at Cockfosters and went backwards from there.
Your model will represent not only space but time because the relative position of planets to each other varies when they orbit round the sun Some Mercury (fastest) orbit faster than others Neptune(slower). Do you have any astronomers in your readership who could tell us when the distribution you envisage has or will happen? Any astrologers might tell us whether it would be an auspicious day to buy a lottery ticket.
The Otford solar system model specifically shows the positions of the planets on 1st January 2000, which is a nice touch.
My model has no such temporal precision.

Further solar system models here and here.
Excellent. This is a great example of precisely why I've read this blog pretty much every day, more or less, for the last (gasps) nine years or so...
Another London-centric model: If the dome of St Paul's was a scale model of the Sun, Earth would be approximately one foot in diameter and pass through Buckingham Palace Gardens and (conveniently) the road tunnel at Rotherhithe.
How big would these balls (sorry spheres) have to be to be in scale with the distances?
Pin heads, ping pong balls or footballs?
Working off a scale of 200 million to one, as DG put it, Jupiter's ball would have a diameter of 71cm. This is about the size of medium yoga ball, I reckon.

Earth's diameter is 11.2x smaller, so would be 6.3cm on this scale. That's a bit bigger than a ping-pong ball, perhaps halfway between that and a tennis ball?

The sun's representation at Charing Cross on this scale would have a diameter of 7m.
What a fun post. More of them please!
How about a short outer-suburban bus route to represent the highly eccentric orbit of the bigger-than-Pluto nonplanet Eris?
I'd like to think you worked this out using a wall-sized map of London, some pushpins and some string.
The asteroid belt is full of random rubbish, not much to look at, hazardous to travellers and often ignored by the authorities. Elephant & Castle roundabout it is, then
I found the Somerset Space Walk when I cycled down to Plymouth to watch the eclipse in 1999.
If you are going to add Pluto, perhaps you should include other minor planets, such as Eris or Ceres?

And Proxima Centuri - about 25 trillion miles away from us - would be about 125,000 miles away from Trafalgar Square on this scale, about half way to the (real) Moon or five times the circumference of the Earth.
On that scale the sun would be about 25 feet across, and the Earth about 2.5 inches.
Am I the only one who read the opening sentence and thought it was going to be a tribute post to Douglas Adams:

"Space is big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind- bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist's, but that's just peanuts to space."

Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
...or even more unlikely a tribute to Hawkwind!
I do a solar system walk with my Cub scouts through Bushey Park and pin a "sun" at one end and ask then to guess how far to the next planet and use some plastercine to give them an idea of scale. So what about Eris, Ceres, Makemake etc?
+1 to Dominic H
Try the Porridge episode 'A Test Of Character' for a version using fruit to show the scale of the Solar System.
Another excellent post.
Superb! I love Neptune in T5...
I was going to ask about Eris, Ceres and Makemake. I'm not clever enough to work out the maths myself :)
The true edge of the Solar System is the Heliopause, where the solar wind is no longer felt and the beginning of interstellar space. That's considerably past Neptune. Voyager 2 for example, was lauched in 1977, made it to Neptune in 1989 and is only just at the edge of the solar system now.

If the scale model included this, you could have the M25 representing the Oort cloud. Sadly, the Kuiper belt doesn't then fit with the N/S Circular Road.
In addition to the balls for the planets, it would be interesting to draw lines on the ground to represent the orbits of the planets.

This would indeed by a massive task, and not exactly practical. Maybe more practical would be for the intrepid DG to walk the orbits and report back over a series of blog posts. I'd certainly read them.

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