What will happen when our sun dies?

09 May, 2018, 00:29 | Author: Sam Montgomery
  • The sun will explode and turn our solar system into a ball of super hot gas

But now they show that, after the interstellar gas and dust are launched in space, the star begins to warm up to 3 times more quickly than in the previous models, making it possible for a low-mass star to become a planetary nebula.

And it seems our sun will be right up there with the best of them, ending in a fiery blaze that will be visible for around 10,000 years, notes a new study published yesterday in Nature Astronomy.

All stars die at some point, so even our Sun will find its end after all.

According to Science Daily, a team of researchers designed a new model predicting the lifespan of stars. The model forecasts the life process of the stars having different masses.

"When a star dies it ejects a mass of gas and dust-known as its envelope-into space", said Albert Zijlstra, an astrophysicist from the University of Manchester and one of the authors of the new study, said in a statement.

One of the scientists involved in solving the years-long mystery, Albert Zijlstra, an astrophysics professor at Jodrell Bank, described the sun will die creating the most attractive visual formation in the sky. These rings bear the name of planetary nebulas and are pretty common whenever stars die. Researchers believe it will be become a planetary nebula as bright as other stars.

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However, after developing a new model that predicts the lifecycle of stars, a team of global astronomers has discovered low mass stars of the size of our sun or larger do in fact produce a visible nebula, albeit slightly fainter ones. Further, he said that this unveils the core of the star, which at this scenario in the life of the star is gradually getting exhausted before dying off finally.

"What we've shown is that the core will be hot enough in five to 10 thousand years after the outer layers have been ejected, and that is quick enough", said Zijlstra. But, for years, scientists weren't sure if the sun in our galaxy would follow the same fate: it was thought to have too low mass to create a visible planetary nebula. "Problem solved, after 25 years!" said Zijlstra.

Data from the model also sheds insight on a problem that had astronomers confused for years.

They're named planetary nebulae not because they actually have anything to do with planets, but because, when the first ones were discovered by William Herschel in the late 18th century, they were similar in appearance to planets through the telescopes of the time. "This is a nice result...we now have a way to measure the presence of stars of ages a few billion years in distant galaxies".

Since his team's model confirms that our sun will go down in the same spectacular manner, closing curtain with a luminous planetary nebula, the study finally sets things straight on a matter that's been bugging astronomers for 25 years - namely, how can old, low mass stars just like our sun still produce bright planetary nebulae.

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