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Out near...

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Messages: 1 - 6 of 6
  • Message 1. 

    Posted by zl_bbc (U14552627) on Saturday, 19th January 2013

    How should I understand "out near" here?

    "Out near the orbit of Jupiter, a faint speck of light is moving through the black of space."

    I didn't found a fixed expression / idiom "out near".


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  • Message 2

    , in reply to message 1.

    Posted by Hattie (U14841294) on Saturday, 19th January 2013

    The Jovian orbit is further from the Sun than that of Earth so we say it is further out. It is a term we often use to describe something further from a centre. Something moving near something is said to be, well, near it. Thus from here on Earth something moving near the orbit of Jupiter is said to be 'out near the orbit of Jupiter'.
    It is neither a fixed expression nor an idiom. The words simply mean what they say.

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  • Message 3

    , in reply to message 2.

    Posted by zl_bbc (U14552627) on Saturday, 19th January 2013

    Thank you.
    I got it, but could it be written:
    "Near the orbit of Jupiter..." ?

    Does "Out near.." mean that it is not very close to the orbit?
    Did the author want to express that? When I see the picture the comet is quite out of the orbit of Jupiter. If it is so I can understand it.

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  • Message 4

    , in reply to message 3.

    Posted by Jay (U2975371) on Saturday, 19th January 2013

    Yes, it is near the orbit of Jupiter. But, it is also out from Earth. The author is relating the position of the comet from Earth. It is out (from Earth) near Jupiter.

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  • Message 5

    , in reply to message 3.

    Posted by Hattie (U14841294) on Saturday, 19th January 2013

    No. The 'out' is used as I explained it. Had it been near the orbit of one of the inner planets Mercury or Venus the word used would have been 'in' instead of 'out'. As in "in near the orbit of Mercury".
    As for how 'near' anything might be to a planetary orbit I think people generally are not very precise. After all, no planetary orbit is actually circular and all are at varying angles to the ecliptic so it does not necessarily follow that anything so described shall ever be anywhere actually close to the planet in question. In particular in connection with a comet, which probably has origins a great deal further out than the orbit of Jupiter, I would expect its orbit to require considerable distortion for it to follow anything like a planetary path.

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  • Message 6

    , in reply to message 5.

    Posted by zl_bbc (U14552627) on Saturday, 19th January 2013

    Thank you very much for your "No", Hattie and for your "Yes", Jay. smiley - smiley

    Your answers begin differently, but I got it now, why it is "Out near...".

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