You may notice I am missing my 6th week post, this is because the activity was to do lots of commenting on different blogs. I didn’t find the need to write a post in that activity.
Anyway, welcome to week 7 of the Student Blogging Challenge!
Write about something you are passionate about relating to nature.
Do you ever sometimes look up at the sky at night and see little twinkling pinpricks of light in the sky? These are called stars. You often hear stars being the topic of countless poems, stories, and nursery rhymes alike. But just what is a star, exactly?
Basically, stars are hot, big exploding balls of gas made up mostly of hydrogen and helium. Stars get so hot by burning hydrogen into helium in a process called nuclear fusion. This is what makes them so hot and bright.
The Sun is actually a star, and is the nearest one to Earth. It is so hot that the huge amount of hydrogen is undergoing a constant star-wide nuclear reaction.
According to current star formation theory, stars are formed in clouds of gas and dust, known as nebulae. Gravity forces the dust to bunch together. As more and more dust bunches up, gravity gets stronger and it starts to get hot and becomes a protostar. A protostar is an early stage in the revolution of a star. Once the center gets hot enough, nuclear fusion will begin and a young star is born.
Once a star, it will burn and and have energy as a star for billions of years. This is the state of the star for the majority of its life and is called the “main sequence”. The star stays like this until it’s hydrogen runs out, and they will enter the final phases of their lifetime.
When the hydrogen runs out, the outside of the star expands and it becomes a red giant.
Eventually the core of the star will start to make iron. This will cause the star to collapse. What happens to the star next depends on how much mass it had. An average star will become a white dwarf star. Larger stars will create a huge nuclear explosion called a supernova. After the supernova it may become a black hole or a neutron star.
The exact lifetime of a star depends very much on its size. Very large, massive stars burn their fuel much faster than smaller stars and may only last a few hundred thousand years. Smaller stars, however, will last for several billion years, because they burn their fuel much more slowly.
I find stars very fascinating and the whole solar system manages to amaze me. Who knew that so much exists outside our planet?