Solar System Flyby

A number of flybys of the solar system exist, including (my favourite last):

Finally, there was an animated GIF (I cannot find it now) that showed, starting from the Sun, how long it would take to travel to each of the planets racing along at a few times the speed of light. It gave the person viewing a good idea of just how far it was between planets.

With that in mind, I’d like to know if anyone would be interested in making a realistic Solar System Flyby with me. Here are some of my previous Blender projects and tutorials:

Here are some ideas for the animation:

  • ~10 minutes (maybe slightly longer).

  • Starts from the Sun (e.g.,

  • Screen has four informational panels in each corner:

  • Facts. Interesting facts about the planet being viewed (what makes it unique, what we can learn from it, what mysteries surround it, what moons might have water, its orbital period, how it protects Earth, etc.).

  • Speed & Distances. The speed the camera is moving (percentage of light), and distance the camera has stopped from the body (so that each planet can appear the same size in the main viewing area). Also, the distance to Earth.

  • Sizes. Relative size of the body to Earth (as an overlay with the smaller body in front). For example, if the corner panel was showing a 200px wide Sun, then the Earth would be centered in front as a 2px dot. (The Sun being ~109 Earth radii.)

  • Name. The name of the planet should be displayed.

  • Subtle soundtrack, with digital voice over of a speech on why space should remain free of weapons (as per Eisenhower’s original vision for NASA). (I can supply the audio, if you would like to hear it.)

  • The camera has a 60 second pan/sweep/showcase of a space body.

  • Camera accelerates away from the body, topping out at ~100x light speed.

  • -> Mercury = 1.94 s

  • -> Venus = 1.66 s

  • -> Earth = 1.4 s

  • -> Mars = 2.57 s

  • -> Jupiter = 18.38 s

  • -> Saturn = 21.75 s

  • -> Uranus = 48.03 s

  • -> Neptune = 54.37 s

  • Total travel time = ~132 s

  • Star fields fade in as the planet shrinks in the distance (and conversely disappear as planets fill the view screen), possibly warped as per

  • Modern, high-resolution texture and normal maps (like the ones I used and have for the relative star sizes image). Would need Messenger’s latest maps of Mercury – shouldn’t be a problem.

  • Earth rotates once every 30 seconds; all other planets rotate relative to Earth.

  • Show a space ship within an Alcubierre warp bubble for travelling the longer distances between gas giants:




  • Accurate tilts, rotations, texture maps, distances, etc.

  • View screen projects the planetary details?
    I welcome your feedback, ideas, and especially any offers to help.