Over the years, with new discoveries coming up every week, we have learned a lot about space. But of course, not all of it which makes it so fascinating to curious minds. Space is vast and amazingly beautiful. While Earth is a planet of the Milky Way Galaxy, there are billions of other galaxies out there that we haven’t even discovered yet. Here are some amazing facts about space that we do know.
1. Space is absolutely Silent:
There has to be something with molecules for sound to travel. On Earth, sound travels by vibrating air molecules. But in space, there is no atmosphere, there are no molecules to vibrate between the empty areas. Hence, the sound has no medium to travel in space. Astronauts use radios to communicate with each other since radio waves can travel in space.
2. An Average Star:
The Sun is considered to be an average star and it would take 1.3 million Earth to fill up this average star. The mean radius of the Sun is 432,450 miles which make its diameter about 864,938 miles and Sun makes up 99.86% of the mass of our Solar System. Other 14% of the Solar System is mostly made by the enormous planets like Jupiter and Saturn.
3. Neutron Stars:
Neutron stars are born when a huge star with a mass around 8 to 30 times of our Sun explodes in a Supernova. Consequently, they rotate remarkably fast because of their physics. They can rotate from 60 times per second to 600 times per second after being born. PSR J1748-2446ad is known to be the fastest-spinning neutron star. It rotates at a rate of 716 times a second or 43,000 revolutions per minute. When two Neutron Stars collide they form a black hole.
4. No Moons:
In our solar system, there are only two planets that have no moons, Mercury and Venus. As Mercury and Venus are very close to the Sun, due to the excessive temperature there is no chance to have a moon. In our solar system, there are a total of 188 moons. Among all the planets in our solar system, Jupiter has the most number of moons, 79 confirmed as of now. Saturn has the second most number of moons, which is 62. Some of these moons are bigger than Mercury itself.
5. Uranus Is Tilted:
Uranus is one of the four large planets in our solar system that are known as gas giants. The other three are Jupiter, Saturn, and Neptune. They are known as gas giants because these large planets are made up mostly gases like hydrogen and helium, and has only a relatively small rocky core. Uranus’ blue glow is due to the gases in its atmosphere- hydrogen, helium, and methane. Uranus’ upper atmosphere is filled with methane gas, methane gas filters out all the red light from the Sun but reflects the Sun’s blue light back into space, giving it its blue glowing appearance. Uranus has a total of 27 moons. Uranus is tilted 97.77 degrees on Uranus’ axis and rotates on its side. Because of this, a day there only lasts 17 hours, 14 minutes and 24 seconds. A season on Uranus is similar to 21 Earth years.
6. Galaxies That Are Visible From Earth:
Some galaxies are visible from Earth in the naked eye but only if it is very dark out. Galaxies are like diffuse patches of light, so they are hard to see.
One can see our galaxy Milky Way, the largest concentration of stars in a band stretching across the sky. It can’t be seen from most cities. The Magellanic Clouds are two small galaxies which You can only see from the southern hemisphere. They are being accreted by the Milky Way galaxy. The Andromeda Galaxy or M31is another galaxy that is visible from earth. They can be seen as a fuzzy patch in the constellation of Andromeda. The Triangulum Galaxy (M-33), the Omega Centauri and the Sagittarius Dwarf Spheroidal Galaxy are also possible to see from earth. Though they are extremely hard to see but not impossible.
7. More Stars Than Sand:
There are said to be more stars in the universe than grains of sand on all the beaches on Earth. There are an estimated 100 thousand million stars in the Milky Way alone. Outside that, there are billions of other galaxies also. That’s at least a billion trillion od stars. Also, the core of a star reaches 16 million degrees Celsius. A grain of sand this hot would kill someone from 150 kilometers away.
8. Galaxies Collide:
In space, if two pieces of the similar type of metal touch each other, they will collide into one. This phenomenon is known as cold welding and this event occurs because the atoms of two pieces of metal have no way of knowing they are separate. This event doesn’t occur on earth because of the presence of air and water between the pieces. The Andromeda Galaxy is approaching our Milky Way galaxy at the speed of around 110 kilometers per second. It is said that in 3.75 billion years the Milky Way and will form a giant elliptical galaxy Andromeda galaxies will collide.
9. The First Photo Of A Black Hole:
The first ever photo of a black hole was released in April 2019 and it was captured by the Event Horizon Telescope. That is a network of eight linked telescopes and was also captured due to the algorithm of programmer Katie Bouman. The photographed black hole is 3 million times the size of Earth. It shows a halo of dust and gas 310 million trillion miles from Earth.
10. Moon Is Moving Away:
According to scientists, our moon is moving further from the earth at a rate of 1.6 inches or 4 cm per year. It is believed that eventually, the Moon will move out of the field of Earth’s gravity in some billions of years. Earth’s rotation is also said to be slowing down by time because of the tidal effects the Moon has on the Earth’s rotation. This implies that in the past days were shorter.