Here is a collection of intriguing facts about the twinkling stars that you see in the night sky.
The night sky is full of stars, galaxy and mystery too. While science has uncovered a lot about the stars, that is only a small part of our understanding of the universe. There is more to stars than the twinkling and beauty.
Below we give you some facts to share with your friends and family next time you are stargazing together.
The number of stars is constantly changing
It is estimated that the Milky Way Galaxy contains 100 to 400 billion stars. However, these numbers are constantly changing as new stars are born and old stars die.
Age of the stars
The age of an average star is between 1 to 10 billion years but some stars are older than that. But did you know that large stars live shorter than smaller stars? This is because the large star burns through their fuel faster than smaller stars. When giant stars die, they explode into a supernova.
You can never see a million stars
We are sure you would have heard songs, poems and TV commercials claiming to see a million stars. But that is impossible, as stars are not close and bright enough to see a million of them. On a very good night with no moon and no source of light, a person can, on average, see 2000 to 2500 stars at one time.
Colour of the stars
The colours of stars have different light wavelengths, which can range from short-wavelength, hotter and high-energy blue and violet light to the longer wavelength, colder and lower energy red and orange. The white colours of the stars are an even balance between both of the above light wavelengths.
Stars don’t actually twinkle
Sorry to burst the bubble but stars do not twinkle. When the light of the stars travels into your realm of vision, it experiences turbulence in the Earth’s atmosphere that causesa disturbance in the path of the light. This creates an illusion that the star is twinkling.
Stars are bigger and brighter than the sun
All of the 50 most prominent stars that you can see in the sky from the Earth are much bigger and brighter than the sun. The dimmest of the 50 stars is called Alpha Centauri and that is also 1.5 times brighter than the sun.
Time to show off your star knowledge.