May 23, 2017

Story of the Sun (Part 1)

Fascinating life cycle of a star that we know as "The Sun".

Published Jan 1, 2003
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The sun is over 800,000 miles across

Scientists believe that five billion years ago there was no Milky Way, no Solar System and, of course, no Earth. In their place existed scattered clouds of interstellar gas and dust. So how did our galaxy, and most importantly, our Solar System evolve from this chaotic mass of diffuse “stuff”?

A 747 jet traveling at a speed of 600 miles per hours will take more than six months just to circle the Sun’s equator.

The interstellar clouds didn’t have an even mass. They were dense at places and really sparse at others. As Newton had discovered, the gravitational pull of an object depends on its mass. The high-density region started pulling the materials spread around it towards itself, in the process making itself more dense and its gravitational pull stronger.

333,000 Earth sized balls can be made from our Sun.

This process led to two things. It increased the temperature in the dense core, which was getting denser each moment. It also made the gasses and particles outside the core move around the core in circles until everything outside the core resembled a flat disk. (Think of a flying Frisbee with a bulging middle.)

The temperature at the core of the Sun is 15 million degrees Celsius – that is 15,000,000, quite unimaginable, right?

This moving mass of gasses and other “stuff” later formed the planets, asteroids and comets and the dense and hot core formed, what we know today as the Sun.

Experiment 1
How did the dense core (and later, the center of the Sun) become so hot?
Cycle 1Hand pump 1
Pump the tires of the cycle by the hand pump.
The pump gets hot after a while.
If a gaseous matter is compressed, its density increases causing the temperature to increase.
As the matter started to accumulate in the core it became dense and the elements inside started to compress. This caused the core to become hot.

Experiment 2
How did the dense core made the outer clouds and materials spin around it?
Kitchen sink 1
Drain plug 1
Water as needed
Sugar 1 – 2 teaspoons
Fix the drain plug tightly over the drain hole. Pour in water till the sink is one third full. Put sugar in the water but do not mix. Remove the drain plug.
Note how the water goes round in circles before draining. This is more obvious near the drain hole. After the water is completely drained see how the sugar particles lie around the drain. The particles show the direction the water was moving.
The drain hole pulls the water towards it due to gravity. The force of the pull made the water flow around it in a circle.
The same holds true for the dense core and the materials moving around it in a circular motion.

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