The origin of the solar system is believed to have occurred approximately 4.6 billion years ago. The most widely accepted theory for the formation of the solar system is known as the nebular hypothesis or the solar nebula theory.

According to this theory, the solar system formed from a giant rotating cloud of gas and dust called the solar nebula. This cloud was composed primarily of hydrogen and helium, along with trace amounts of heavier elements. The solar nebula began to collapse under its own gravity, possibly triggered by the shockwave from a nearby exploding star or a passing molecular cloud.

As the solar nebula contracted, it started to spin faster, with the majority of its mass concentrated at the center. The central region eventually became the protosun, which would later evolve into our Sun. The remaining gas and dust in the disk surrounding the protosun gradually formed the various bodies of the solar system.

Within this protoplanetary disk, tiny solid particles called planetesimals began to collide and merge, forming larger bodies called protoplanets. These protoplanets continued to grow through further collisions and accretion of material. Eventually, some protoplanets became large enough to gravitationally dominate their orbits and attract more material, becoming the planets we know today.

In the inner region of the disk, where temperatures were higher, only rocky materials could condense and form terrestrial planets like Earth, Mercury, Venus, and Mars. These planets have relatively small sizes and solid surfaces.

Farther from the Sun, where temperatures were colder, volatile substances like water, methane, and ammonia could condense into solid form. These regions gave rise to the gas giant planets—Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune—which have large sizes and are primarily composed of hydrogen and helium.

During this formation process, smaller bodies such as asteroids and comets were also created. Asteroids are rocky remnants that failed to form into full-sized planets, while comets are icy bodies formed in the outer regions of the solar system.

The precise details of the solar system's formation are still the subject of ongoing scientific research and investigation. However, the general framework provided by the nebular hypothesis has been supported by a combination of astronomical observations, computer simulations, and studies of meteorites and other planetary materials.

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