
 Solar Mass Loss, the Astronomical Unit, and the Scale of the Solar System (Site not responding. Last check: 20071022) 
  The new definition would have to be: "The Astronomical Unit is defined as the radius of a circular orbit, in which a body of negligible mass, and free of perturbations, would revolve around a body whose mass is one solar mass unit in 2 
  To compare with experiment, the numbers of immediate interest are the variations of the semimajor axes of planetary orbits as compared with the estimated error in the AU, as well as secular corrections to the mean motion, namely changes in the period and mean anomaly. 
  When multiplied by the present orbital semimajor axes of the planets Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars, and the number of orbits in a century, Eq.(18) yields displacements along the orbit in one century of 1380 m, 1009 m, 858 m, and 695 m, respectively. 
 home.comcast.net /~pdnoerd/SMassLoss.html (3128 words) 
