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I am aware of the command AstronomicalData["Jupiter", "Distance"] from which I can get the distance between the earth and Jupiter. Is there any way to use AstronomicalData to get the distance between the sun and Jupiter?

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up vote 16 down vote accepted

Perhaps naïve:

Norm@AstronomicalData["Jupiter", "Position"]
  edit .... copy/paste error corrected

Checking some consistence

EuclideanDistance @@ (AstronomicalData[#, "Position"] & /@ {"Earth", "Jupiter"}) == 
                                            AstronomicalData["Jupiter", "Distance"]

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@Kuba I can't comment. I've never been in Jupiter. – Dr. belisarius Nov 18 '13 at 6:32
@Kuba My knowledge of astronomy is only commensurable with my manners: It doesn't suffice to get surprised. – Dr. belisarius Nov 18 '13 at 7:10
@Kuba Well, I get a 7 now. Eppur si muove; – Dr. belisarius Nov 19 '13 at 0:56

Offered as an alternative to getting the same information and a check on it, one can also get this measurement from a WolframAlpha query:

enter image description here


Of some interest, by these measurements Jupiter appears to have moved quite a ways further from the Sun since belisarius's answer just some 11 hours ago.

67.74204*10^11 vs 7.74232*10^11

WolframAlpha can also give one a plot of Jupiter's position in orbit (although not a particularly satisfying one):

enter image description here

If, Jupiter had crossed its perihelion (the point it passes closest to the sun, which should correspond to the fastest part of its orbit) could it have moved as much as it appears to have moved between belisarius's measure and mine?

Any astronomers or astro physicists about?

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Interesting ... do you think we are solving for two different Jupiters? – Dr. belisarius Nov 18 '13 at 7:13
@belisarius - Perhaps just slipping glimpses of parallel universes. More (or less given one's point of view) seriously, I ran the Wolfram Alpha query and your code and almost the same time and got essentially identical values (7.743 x^11 meters). I just ran The Wolfram Alpha query again and it comes out 7.744*10^11. Not as big a move, but a move. – Jagra Nov 19 '13 at 0:35
@belisarius I thought at first you'd forgotten to compensate for the great altitude at which you train... – cormullion Nov 22 '13 at 13:12
@belisarius Ok, I've deleted old comments – Kuba Nov 22 '13 at 13:35

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