Sun Facts

Sun Facts

Did you know that the sun is actually a star that is at the centre of our solar system and is responsible for our climate and weather here on Earth?

sun facts

The average radius of the sun is 432,168 miles (695,508km) – which is 109.2 times the size of the Earth and 20 to 25% is the core.

Sun Overview

Age: 4.6 billion years old

Diameter: 865,373 miles (1,392,684km)

Circumference at Equator: 2,715,395 miles (4,370,005km)

Mass: 1,989,100,000,000,000,000,000 billion kg. That is 333,000 times the mass of Earth!

Temperature: 9,932°F (5,500°C)

How many Earths would fit Inside the Sun?

This is pretty unbelievable. One million Earths could fit inside the sun. If a hollow sun was filled up with spherical Earths, then around 960,000 would fit inside. If they were all squashed up then around 1,300,000 would fit inside.

earth size vs sun

Will the Sun Consume the Earth?

As a matter of fact it will, but not in our lifetime. When all the hydrogen has been burnt, the sun will continue for about 130 million more years, burning Helium. During this time is will grow to the point where it will literally engulf Mercury, Venus and Earth. When this happens it will become a red giant.

One Day the Sun will be the Size of Earth

After this red giant phase that we spoke about, the sun will collapse. It will keep its huge mass, but will contain the approximate volume of our planet. When this happens it will be called a white dwarf.

How much of the Mass in the Solar System does the Sun contain?

This is quite unbelievable, but the sun contains 99.86% of the mass in the solar system. The mass of the sun is around 330,000 times greater than that of the Earth. It is almost three quarters Hydrogen, while the remainder is mostly Helium.

composition of sun

The Sun is an almost Perfect Sphere

The sun is almost a perfect sphere with a difference of just 6.2 miles (10km) in diameter between the poles and the equator. Due to the vast expanse of the Sun this is the closest thing we’ve ever seen to a perfect sphere in nature.

How long does Light from the Sun take to reach the Earth?

Amazingly it takes just 8 minutes for the light of the sun to reach the earth. At 93,205,678 miles (150 million km) from Earth you would expect it to take longer, but light travels at 186,411 miles (300,000km) per second.

Although this energy reaches the Earth in a few minutes, it will already have taken millions of years to travel from the Sun’s core to its surface.

distance from earth to sun

How fast does the Sun Travel?

The sun travels at 137 miles (220km) per second. The sun is 24,000-26,000 light years from the galactic centre and it takes the Sun 225-250 million years to complete an orbit of the centre of the Milky Way.

The Sun is Middle-Aged

The sun is around 4.5 billion years old. It has already burned off about half of its store of Hydrogen. It has enough left to continue to burn Hydrogen for approximately another 5 billion years. The Sun is currently a type of star known as a Yellow Dwarf.

The Sun has a Strong Magnetic Field

When magnetic energy is released by the sun during magnetic storms we see solar flares. To the naked eye they look like sun spots. In these sun spots the magnetic lines are twisted and they spin, very similar to a tornado on Earth.

Solar_Magnetic_Field

How hot can it get Inside the Sun?

This is unbelievable, but the sun can reach 15 million degrees Celsius at its core. That is seriously hot.

The sun sure is a hot and interesting place, certainly not fit for visitors!

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