|≈||approximately equal to|
|digits||indicates that digits repeat infinitely (e.g. 8.294 369 corresponds to 8.294 369 369 369 369 …)|
The astronomical unit (symbol: au or ua) is a unit of length, roughly the distance from Earth to the Sun. However, that distance varies as Earth orbits the Sun, from a maximum (aphelion) to a minimum (perihelion) and back again once a year. Originally conceived as the average of Earth's aphelion and perihelion, it is now defined as exactly 149 597 870 700 metres (about 150 million kilometres, or 93 million miles). The astronomical unit is used primarily as a convenient yardstick for measuring distances within the Solar System or around other stars. However, it is also a fundamental component in the definition of another unit of astronomical length, the parsec.
The Hubble length or Hubble distance is a unit of distance in cosmology, defined as cH0−1 — the speed of light multiplied by the Hubble time. It is equivalent to 4,550 million parsecs or 14.4 billion light years. (The numerical value of the Hubble length in light years is, by definition, equal to that of the Hubble time in years.) The Hubble distance would be the distance between the Earth and the galaxies which are currently receding from us at the speed of light, as can be seen by substituting D = c/H0 into the equation for Hubble's law, v = H0D.