Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Our Sun

Our Sun and solar system was formed from a huge cloud of dust and gases that condensed due to the force of gravity.
Scientists by studying the Sun's or any star's spectrum can determine the chemical composition of that star. Our Sun is composed of 71% hydrogen, 27% helium and 2% heavier elements.

The Sun's energy is produced by nuclear fusion. This process combines, fuses, hydrogen atoms into helium atoms. Some mass is lost during this process and transformed into energy. This energy is radiated into space as the EM spectrum and the solar wind.

The solar wind is a stream of electrons and protons which are emitted from the Sun's corona. The corona is the outer gas layer of the Sun seen during solar eclipses.

The Sun is a large nuclear fusion reactor that has enough fuel, hydrogen, to burn for approximately another 5.5 billion years. Our Sun like all stars will eventually run out of fuel, hydrogen, and collapse.

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