Cosmically Speaking, Part II

The+density+of+the+neutron+star+is+mind-boggling.
The density of the neutron star is mind-boggling.

The density of the neutron star is mind-boggling.

The density of the neutron star is mind-boggling.

Ryan Muchard, Staff Writer

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This is the second installment of the cosmically speaking franchise, the first being a deep piece that had people perplexed about their significance as humans in the universe. To check out that, click on my profile and give it a read, but make sure you are seated whilst reading because it gets intense. For part two we will inquire about one of the crazy things that occurs out in the cosmos.

The Neutron Star; they arise when a massive star ten times the size of the sun explodes in a supernova. The star is reduced to a small core that collapses in on itself under extreme gravitational force that is 2 billion times stronger than that of earth. All that is left is neutrons, giving the star the name. The star that was once ten times the size of the sun is now reduced to a seven mile diameter yet it is still twice the mass of the sun, which has a 900,000 mile diameter. These stars are relatively rare: only about one in a thousand stars in our galaxy are neutron stars. The matter in a Neutron Star is so dense that if a paperclip was made out of the same material, it would weigh similarly to Mount Everest. Its density is therefore a hundred trillion times the density of water; at that density, all the people on Earth could fit into a teaspoon! If this doesn’t show how mysterious and trippy the cosmos is, I don’t know what will. And the fact that we still know relatively nothing about the cosmos makes this even crazier; there could be even weirder phenomena that occur out in the vast frontier, but we just simply can’t observe them with our current technology. The Neutron Star itself is insane, but what it shows is the true scary part. It shows the raw power of space, and how relatively small we are on earth. It is very humbling and makes me wonder what else is out there… Stay tuned for a part three where I will take a look at even more cosmic craziness.

 

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