Saturday, 8 February 2014

When A Light Bulb Goes Off

So yeah, the title sounds vague, but today I'm going to talk about the solar system's light bulb, the Sun! The Sun is the main power source, and provides all the light and heat to every planet (apart from what we make here on Earth).

So let's start with the basics, the Sun is 8 lightminutes away from the Earth, meaning it takes the light from the Sun 8 minutes to reach us here on Earth. It's really old, the Sun is 4.5 Billion(!!) years old, which means it's roughly been around for a third of the the Universe. It's really fat, the Sun weights around 330,000 times the weight of the Earth, and is 99% of the mass of the Solar System.

 (I actually took this one myself, it's a little out of focus, but those black spots are Sun spots)

It produces so much light by burning Hydrogen at it's core, which basically means it turns 620 million tons of Hydrogen into Helium a second! But what happens when this Hydrogen is all used up? It starts fusing heavier elements and then in around 5 billion years the Sun will swell into a star known as a Red Giant, and then may supernova and spend the rest of the age of the Universe as a White Dwarf Star (we'll go into these more in other posts!
So what do you think?


  1. Woah you took that photo yourself? It's amazing!

    Sharlotte // Sharlotte

    1. Yeah, I got to play with my uni's telescopes for a bit! Thanks for the lovely comment!