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July 02, 2019 3 min read

The cosmos is full of beautiful mysteries waiting to be discovered. Let Galileo Glass tell you some interesting facts about our galaxy!

Many stars in the night sky are bigger and brighter than our sun.

Only a small amount of stars are about the same size and brightness of our Sun and the rest are all bigger and brighter. Of the brightest 50 stars visible to the bare eye from Earth, the least intrinsically bright is Alpha Centauri, which is still more than 1.5 times brighter than our Sun and still cannot be easily seen from most of the Northern Hemisphere.

Stars can only see in the night sky are actually brighter and bigger than the Sun

Don’t think red is hot, and blue is cool!

We all assume that red is hot and blue is cool. But when it comes to planets in space, this is not true at all. In fact, heated objects change color as their temperature changes, and red represents the lowest temperature at which a heated object can glow in visible light. As it gets hotter, the color changes to white and ultimately to blue. So the red stars you see in the sky are the “coolest” (least hot), and the blue stars are the hottest!

Mars is a red planet with really cold atmosphere

Stars don’t twinkle.

“Twinkle, twinkle, little star
How I wonder what you are
Up above the world so high
Like a diamond in the sky”

This is the song we sang all the times throughout our childhoods. But do you know that it is wrong, that stars don’t actually twinkle?

There was one star named Sirius which “twinkled and sparkled” so many times that people reported it as a UFO. But in fact, the twinkle effect is not a property of the stars, it is the Earth’s turbulent atmosphere.

Stars don't twinkle

When the star appears near our horizon, as the light from that star passes the atmosphere, it must pass through so many layers of rapidly differing density. Eventually, the light gets to our eyes, but the deflection causes it to change slightly in color and intensity. As a result, stars “twinkle”. But up there, above our Earth’s atmosphere, stars do not twinkle.

You can see 20 quadrillion miles, at least.

On a clear night, when you look up to the sky, you can see approximately 19 quadrillion miles, which nearly 204398203 times the distance from the Earth to the Sun. Wow, look at that distance!

Black holes don’t suck.

A fun description of black holes as we always hear is “Black holes are the best dumpsters in the universe. They will suck in everything around them.” As we find this is very funny, but it’s totally wrong.

Black holes, in general, do not “suck”.

The first actual photo of a black hole

There is no suction involved inside of black holes. Instead, it is gravity that attracts things near a black hole. In one way of visualizing it, it really is a bit like falling into a hole, but not like being hoovered into it. Gravity is a fundamental force of Nature, and all matter has it. When something is pulled into a black hole, the process is more like being pulled into like a fish being reeled in by an angler, rather than being pushed along like a rafter inexorably being dragged over a waterfall.

Stay tuned to our blogs for more wonderful facts about our cosmos!