Monday, August 2, 2010

Our Insignificant Sun

Last month astronomers discovered a star which makes our sun look like a lone pea sitting next to a giant earth-ball (you know those over-sized exercise balls). This star weighs around 265 times the mass of our wee sun. The star is known only as R136a1, which seems a bit of of a bland name for the largest known object in the universe. We already knew that our sun was not really anything special and not very large compared to most other stars, but this new discovery really puts us in our place. We're but specks on a small planet which looks like a pale blue dot from outside our solar system. Our pale blue dot is orbiting a very ordinary and very small sun between two arms of a very undistiguished galaxy.

Here's a picture from National Geographic comparing the size of the stars.




    I just had to post this.

  2. Oh that's just freaking brilliant. I love Monty Python.

  3. And now, add your mom to that scale...

  4. Holy shit that's big...