What is Outside the Earth?

What is Outside the Earth?

There are a lot of amazing things that happen on Earth every day like births. Every day 385,000 babies are born into the world, which is a lot but compared to how many stars are born every day, that is nothing. According to Curioustimes.in, approximately 275 million stars are born each day in the universe.  

What is the Universe you might ask? Well, it is simply everything, everything on Earth, everything in the solar system, everything in the galaxy, everything outside the galaxy, all of space itself! According to  imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov, the Universe is approximately 94 billion light-years across.  

I know this all might sound confusing but let me explain. One light year is how much light travels in one year. You might ask, why do astronomers use light years to measure the distance between things in space? Well, the distance between things in space is bigger than we can imagine according to imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov light goes through space at 186,000 miles (about 300,000 km) a second for example, the sun is 864,000 miles (about 1390473.22 km) in diameter or to make it a little easier to understand 1.3million times the earth’s size and is about 93 million miles (about 149668992 km) away this means that if the sun would suddenly disappear, we would not know for about eight minutes since that is how long it takes for the sun’s light to reach earth.  

Since we have learned a little about how the universe is measured you might still be wondering about how the sun is 8 minutes in the past well, most things in space are so far from the Earth that we see them as they were thousands, millions, or even billions of years ago. Betelgeuse, one of the biggest stars that is visible in the night sky, according to spacemath.gsfc.nasa.gov is about 650 light years away and it would take around 650 years for the light from it to travel to Earth.

You might ask, well how is something so far visible, well Betelgeuse is about 1400 times bigger than our sun so it’s no wonder that it is still visible from Earth as explained in eso.org. Most stars in the sky that are visible are the same size if not bigger than our sun.

There are more than just stars and planets in the sky, there are also galaxies. What is a galaxy? well by definition a galaxy is a system of stars, stellar remnants, interstellar gas, dust, and dark matter bound together by gravity.

As mentioned in earthsky.org the closest large galaxy to us is the Andromeda Galaxy which is about 2.5 million light-years away. You might think that a galaxy this far is not visible, but it is in fact visible with a telescope and even with the naked eye on a new moon. Based on the data found in public.nrao.edu the Andromeda galaxy is so far away that we see it as it was 2.5 million years ago. The Andromeda is to collide with the milky way galaxy unfortunately we will not be around to see it collide as it is to happen in about 2.5 billion years from now this information was found in public.nrao.edu. 

After learning a little about space do you wonder what happens in the universe every time you blink you might think that a few hundred stars are born, or some thousands of planets are formed but you would be wrong. Every time you blink it is about 1/3 of a second in that time thousands of stars will be born, millions of planets will be born, and the universe will expand by a quarter of a million miles this is based on information found on twistedsifter.com.   

There are still many wonderful things we do not know about space, some are scary, and some are beautiful, but with the right telescope at the right time, you can see a small fraction of the universe. According to nasa.gov, we are only 1 of 2 trillion galaxies, 1 of 100 billion planets, and 1 of 3,9616 solar systems this being within our own galaxy.