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Bryce F.A.Q (Updated: 2015 May 22 11:48 am)
Subject: OT - Stars and how they function
Hi Bryce Forum
This is not directly related to Bryce but I know some of you like Space and the Universe so I thought I put a bit of What makes Stars Work. A Star Can come in Many Sizes and can be either Very Big or Extremely Small. The Sun is a 4.5 Billion Year old Main Sequece Star Yellow Dwarf Class G2. It is losing millions of tonnes of Energy as it converts Hydrogen into Helium it gives of the energy in this process of Millions of Hydrogen Bombs every Second. The Sun is Roughly 93 Million Miles away and it can still burn you eyeballs out of your head if you look at it directly. it is 400 Times Bigger than the Moon and the is 400 Times Closer to us than the Sun so when there is a solar ecclipse it more or less covers the sun and all you can see is the Corona. The Suns Surface Tempreture is 5500°C 10,000°F. The Sunspots are a warning there is going to be a CME(Coronal Mass Ejection or Solar Flare).The Sun is 99.8% of the Solar Systems Mass and Jupiter Takes up the Rest. You can fit 1.3 Million Earth Sized objects in the Sun. And the Sun is actually an average middle age Star. The Smallest Stars on the Main Sequence are Red Dwarfs and they can shine for Trillions of Years(although The Universe is only 13.7 Billion Years old so it is technically a theory.). When the Sun Dies it will Swell to Become a Red Giant and Destroy Mercury, Venus possibly the Earth too When the Red Giant Stage Ends it will shed its loose outer layers to become a tiny white Dwarf that will burn pretty much to the end of time. and when that Stage ends it will hypotheorectially Become a Black Dwarf Star. When a Red Dwarf looses it fuel it will swell to become a Blue Dwarf(also Theorectial some say it will wink out of existance). Bigger Stars like Super Giants are Much Bigger than the Sun and use their fuel up much more Quickly the Fusion doesn't end with Helium like in dwarf stars it then fuses helium into calcium, Gold, Silver iron and others I forgot. Iron is what kills them they have seconds to live once they fuse Iron they Explode in a Super Nova Leaving behind a Nebula(The sun will leave a planetary nebula nothing like Super Giant Nebula's and nothing to do with planets.) or a Neutron Star at the first Satge will be a Magnetar which will become a Magenetpulsar and then a Pulsar. The Fastest Spinning pulsar is over a million times a second. If a Pulsar or White Dwarf Entered the Solar System we would be doomed. if one hit the sun it would explode it in a Type 2 Supernova. Hypergiant Stars live even shorter lives and when they Explode in an Hypernova they leave behind a Black Hole. The Biggest Star in the Diameter is NML Cyngi at 1650 times the radius of the sun and its a Red Hypergiant. And the Biggest in Mass at 265 Times the Mass of the Sun is R136a1 and its a Blue Hypergiant. in Stars the Blue ones are the Hottest and the Red are the Coolest. Stars are not on fire they are more like Neculear Reactors they are kept alight not by fire but Nuclear Fusion. And Thats a few facts about Stars.
I hope you like it
Thanks, Karl. Added an OT (Off Topic) as this does not deal with Bryce. :thumbup:
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The Sun can only Convert Hydrogen Atoms into Helium you are definately correct the Sun is too Small To go beyond Helium. The Sun will probably not make it to the Red Giant Stage because around the same time the Adromeda Galaxy (M31). Will Collide with our Galaxy the Milky way and we could either be flung out of the Galaxy or into the Super Massive Black Hole at its Center. If I am correct the Black Hole at the center of the Andromeda Galaxy has 3 Super Massive Black Holes so whatever the outcome there will be damage of a collateral nature. Another very interesting and my Favourite is Eta Carinae a Blue Hypergiant 100-150 times the Mass of the Sun it looks like a brain.
Hyper Giants are an interesting breed of stars. Usually, in a star, the outward pressure from the fusion reaction at it's core counter-balances the inward pressure from the star's own gravity.
In a Hyper Giant however, something new comes into play. Due to their mass, they can end up fusing so much matter that the gamma radiation caused by this reaction reaches levels so high, that some of it would spontaneously convert into matter. This is essentially a real life example of "e = mc2" put into practice.
This conversion into matter creates pairs of roughly equal amounts of matter and antimatter, essentially turning the core of the star into an antimatter bomb, which is obviously pretty violent.
However, this isn't the only problem. The conversion from energy into matter also means there's a sudden loss of outwards pressure from the energy, replaced by sudden inwards pressure from the gravity of the newly created matter.
With the legs essentially pulled out from under the core of the star, it starts to collapse at an extremely high rate. For a star with 200-300 solar masses, about 60 solar masses worth of carbon and oxygen fuse into heavier elements almost instantaneously. The resulting explosion is known as a superluminous supernova.
An interesting detail is that even though these superluminous supernovae are some of the most intense explosions we know of, the most energetic particles we know about (cosmic rays) are actually not produced directly in these supernova explosions. Instead they're created later on, when the shockwave from the supernova collides with interestellar gas, where it rips apart hydrogen atoms and accelerates the protons to nearly the speed of light.
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