Facts about the universe

Facts about the Universe
  1. Stardust: Almost all elements on Earth – including humans – are made of stardust
  2. The human brain: The human brain is the most complicated object in the universe – at least from our perspective
  3. The Milky Way: Earth is part of the Milky Way galaxy, which is just one of billions of galaxies. The Milky Way contains between 200 and 400 billion stars, of which the sun is just one
  4. Liv: It is estimated that in our galaxy alone, there are around 500 million planets where life could possibly exist (so-called ‘Goldilocks Planets’). This estimate is based on the fact that there are 50 billion planets in our galaxy and that only 1% of these are Goldilocks Planets
  5. The observable universe: There are probably more than 170 billion galaxies in the observable universe – and these galaxies probably represent only a small fraction of the total number of galaxies in the entire universe
  6. Multivers: Some scientists believe that there are several universes in a single “multiverse”
  7. Infinity: Most scientists agree that the universe is infinite, but at the same time it is constantly expanding
  8. The farthest spacecraft: Voyager 1 left our solar system on March 20, 2013 and is the only spacecraft to ever do so
  9. Cold welding: When two metals in space come into contact with each other, they are more or less permanently stuck together; a phenomenon called ‘cold welding’ (on Earth, welding metals requires high heat)
  10. A burning ice planet: About 30 light years from Earth, there is a planet called ‘Gliese 436 b’ that is completely covered in burning ice. Gliese 436 b is burning because it is very close to its star. It is covered in ice because its atmosphere is so strong that all of the planet’s water is condensed into a special form of ice that covers the entire planet
Fact: The universe consists mainly of an unknown 'dark matter' or 'dark energy'
Attribution: Sweetie187 – Flickr.com

Fact: The majority (95%) of the universe consists of an unknown ‘dark matter’


Amazing facts about the universe

  • When you look at the starry sky, you see the past: This is because the stars are very far from Earth and their light takes years to get here. Sunlight takes about 8 minutes to reach Earth (the Sun is the closest star to Earth)
  • The Hubble Telescope allows us to see billions of years back in time: In one particular image, we could see 13 billion years back in time, which is mind-blowing when the universe is only about 13.7 billion years old
  • Your TV shows the creation of the universe: When your TV is not tuned to a specific channel and instead shows black and white flickering (aka ‘ant wars’) with the characteristic choppy TV sound, approximately 1% of all this flickering and noise is the aftermath of the Big Bang (the creation of the universe)
  • There is a diamond planet: Astronomers have discovered a planet that is made up of a massive diamond and has a diameter of approximately 40,200 km. The planet’s name is ‘BPM 37093’, but it is also called ‘Lucy’ after the song ‘Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds’. It is located about 50 light years from Earth in the constellation Centaurus
  • The dark matter: Even though humans have been to space several times, we still don’t know what space is made of. It is believed that space is made up of the following: 4.9% of “ordinary” matter, 26.8% of dark matter and 68.3% of dark energy. The latter two substances – which together make up about 95% of space – are substances of unknown composition, about which almost nothing is known