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Our Star
The sun is a star, a hot ball of glowing gases at the heart of our solar system. Its influence extends far beyond the orbits of distant Neptune and Pluto. Without the sun's intense energy and heat, there would be no life on Earth. And though it is special to us, there are billions of stars like our sun scattered across the Milky Way galaxy.

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  News Features People Extreme Facts Dictionary

Solar Sizzle
The super hot center of the sun blazes at 18 million degrees Fahrenheit (15.7 million degrees Celsius) -- more than 40 thousand times as hot as boiling water. The surface of the sun -- the part we can see -- is a relatively cool 9,900 degrees Fahrenheit (5,500 degrees Celsius) -- more than 15 times as hot as boiling water.
Solar Sizzle
What a Blast
You'd need to explode 100 billion tons of dynamite every second to match the energy produced by the sun.
What a Blast
Long Arm of the Sun
Even though it has been over 35 years since NASA's Voyager spacecraft launched they are both still within our sun's sphere of influence.
Long Arm of the Sun
Long Ride
The sun seems small when we look at it because it is 150 million km (93 million miles) from Earth. If you could somehow fly an airplane to the sun, it would take 26 years. Even super fast particles of light take eight minutes and 19 seconds to get from the sun to the Earth.
Long Ride
Cosmic Calculation
Our sun is one of about 70,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (that's 70 sextillion) stars in the Universe. Even though most are too faint to see, there are more stars out there in space than there are grains of sand on the Earth.
Cosmic Calculation
That's All, Folks ...
When the sun starts to die, it will swell so big that it will almost engulf the Earth. Vast magma oceans will make our home planet a very unpleasant place to live. Fortunately, scientists predict the sun is a little less than halfway through its lifetime. We have about 6.5 billion years to find a new home.
That's All, Folks ...
Great Ball of Fire
The sun is a gigantic ball of hot gas. The sun is so large that about one million Earths could fit inside of it.
Great Ball of Fire
Copernican Model
Nicolaus Copernicus published his sun-centered (heliocentric) model of the solar system in 1543. However, It was not until the 1700s did the idea of a sun-centered system become widely accepted.
Copernican Model
Influence
Without the sun there would be no life on the Earth. We need the sun's intense energy and heat to survive.
Influence
No Sun is Alone
Did you know that the sun is in fact a star, and that the stars in the night sky are all suns in their own right? And each of these billions of stars could in fact have their own planetary systems. NASA's Kepler mission has already found over one hundred confirmed planets of other stars within our galaxy.
No Sun is Alone
Solar Sizzle
The super hot center of the sun blazes at 18 million degrees Fahrenheit (15.7 million degrees Celsius) -- more than 40 thousand times as hot as boiling water. The surface of the sun -- the part we can see -- is a relatively cool 9,900 degrees Fahrenheit (5,500 degrees Celsius) -- more than 15 times as hot as boiling water.
Solar Sizzle
What a Blast
You'd need to explode 100 billion tons of dynamite every second to match the energy produced by the sun.
What a Blast
Long Arm of the Sun
Even though it has been over 35 years since NASA's Voyager spacecraft launched they are both still within our sun's sphere of influence.
Long Arm of the Sun
Long Ride
The sun seems small when we look at it because it is 150 million km (93 million miles) from Earth. If you could somehow fly an airplane to the sun, it would take 26 years. Even super fast particles of light take eight minutes and 19 seconds to get from the sun to the Earth.
Long Ride
Cosmic Calculation
Our sun is one of about 70,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (that's 70 sextillion) stars in the Universe. Even though most are too faint to see, there are more stars out there in space than there are grains of sand on the Earth.
Cosmic Calculation
That's All, Folks ...
When the sun starts to die, it will swell so big that it will almost engulf the Earth. Vast magma oceans will make our home planet a very unpleasant place to live. Fortunately, scientists predict the sun is a little less than halfway through its lifetime. We have about 6.5 billion years to find a new home.
That's All, Folks ...
Great Ball of Fire
The sun is a gigantic ball of hot gas. The sun is so large that about one million Earths could fit inside of it.
Great Ball of Fire
Copernican Model
Nicolaus Copernicus published his sun-centered (heliocentric) model of the solar system in 1543. However, It was not until the 1700s did the idea of a sun-centered system become widely accepted.
Copernican Model
Influence
Without the sun there would be no life on the Earth. We need the sun's intense energy and heat to survive.
Influence
No Sun is Alone
Did you know that the sun is in fact a star, and that the stars in the night sky are all suns in their own right? And each of these billions of stars could in fact have their own planetary systems. NASA's Kepler mission has already found over one hundred confirmed planets of other stars within our galaxy.
No Sun is Alone