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View from a Scope | September 23, 2019

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How many planets will be engulfed when the Sun dies?

In 5 billion years, the sun will expand to become a ‘red giant’. It will engulf the planets Mercury and Venus, but the Earths fate is less clear. As the Sun swells up to 250 times its present size, it will lose more than a third of its mass to the strong stellar winds. This will cause the planets orbits to widen significantly so the Earth may just escape the out-rushing Sun. However at this point our planet will have been long dead, 3 billion years from now the Suns energy output will evaporate the oceans.

Posted in: Sun