Are you fascinated by outer space and its vast beauty and complexity?
As Stephen Hawking once said, “To confine our attention to terrestrial matters would be to limit the human spirit.” If you would like to discover more about space, keep reading to learn six facts about outer space!
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1. The Solar System Is Over 4 Billion Years Old
Scientists estimate that our solar system is 4.571 billion years old. They also believe that in approximately 5 billion years, the sun will begin to expand, becoming a red giant. In around 7.5 billion years, scientists predict that the expanding sun will swallow up Earth.
2. White Holes Might Exist
You may have heard of black holes, which are regions of space-time where gravity is so strong that no matter or light can escape. However, did you know that scientists theorize that white holes might exist?
Although scientists have not yet discovered any white holes, their existence is mathematically possible. As the name suggests, white holes are essentially the reverse of black holes. This means that they couldn’t be entered from the outside but that light and matter could escape.
3. Neptune Could Have Rings One Day
One of Neptune’s moons, Triton, is gradually orbiting closer and closer to Neptune with each orbit around the planet. Scientists believe that Triton will one day be torn apart by Neptune’s gravity, giving the planet rings. They predict it will have more rings than Saturn when this happens!
4. One of Einstein’s Predictions Was Proven True in 2016
The last unconfirmed prediction of Einstein’s theory of general relativity was the existence of gravitational waves. Einstein believed the universe was a fabric made up of space and time, and that events such as the collision of black holes would cause ripples in that fabric or gravitational waves.
In February 2016, two detectors built to observe such waves, one in Louisiana and one in Washington, both detected what scientists believe was a gravitational wave. This could even lead scientists to discover how to reconcile relativity with quantum mechanics, which has long been one of the biggest questions in physics.
5. Saturn Could Float
Speaking of Saturn, it is the only planet that could float in water! This is because it is mainly composed of gas, which makes it lighter. Although Saturn is around nine times bigger than Earth, it is only 1/8 of the Earth’s weight.
6. Time Passes More Slowly In Space
Einstein’s theory of relativity also says that time will run faster or more slowly based on the strength of gravity. This phenomenon is time dilation and has been substantiated by experiments in which an atomic clock on Earth is synced with an atomic clock being flown in an airplane.
In these experiments, the atomic clocks would be ever so slightly off due to the interference of gravity. This difference is extremely small, but in places where a black hole is warping space-time, the difference would be much more magnified.
Learn More Facts About Outer Space
If you want to learn more interesting space facts, check out some books from your local library or look for more information online! Space is fascinating for many reasons, and learning more about our universe is a worthwhile endeavor.
If you have someone in your life who loves learning about space and outer space facts, be sure to impress them with your new knowledge! Also, be sure to check out these gifts for space lovers they are sure to love.
You have now taken the time to learn some interesting things to know about space and the universe we inhabit, which is arguably one of the most important subjects to learn about. Congratulate yourself for taking the time to discover these facts about outer space!
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