Recent research suggests that the Sun has reached middle age.
The Sun is the source of life on Earth. It emits light and heat, or solar energy, which allows different species to reproduce on Earth. But what happens when a giant star runs out of all its fuel? It is the subject of a study by a group of scholars and has been submitted to the Astrophysics Journal. In the paper, scientists say that five billion years from now, the Sun will lose all its life-giving power and become a red giant.
Detailing the chaos to come, the researchers say that our home, Earth, will face a humiliating end. They claim that the Sun will consume Mercury, Venus and possibly Earth.
To understand the various consequences after a Sun-like star swallows a planet, the researchers conducted 3D hydrodynamic simulations. They say the results depend on the size of the object ingested and the stage of the star’s evolution.
The researchers explain that the process of “swallowing planets” is common throughout the life cycle of star systems.
“Regarding the state of Earth, I don’t think it’s clear whether it will be swallowed or not, but it’s certainly not possible to survive,” said Ricardo Yarza, a graduate student in astronomy at the University of California.
In the red giant phase, when the Sun loses hydrogen, its boundaries will expand hundreds of times.
Recent research predicts several other consequences: Sinking planets could be pushed into new, tighter orbits, and others could help form new worlds.
Earlier this month, the European Space Agency (ESA) released research results claiming that the Sun has reached middle age, estimated at 4.57 billion years. He also noted that the Sun appears to be experiencing a midlife crisis, characterized by frequent solar flares, coronal mass ejections (CMEs) and solar storms.