Arthur Stanley Eddington - Can We Survive the Death of the Sun? TV - Lawrence Krauss - The Universe TV - How the Universe Works TV - Stephen Hawking -
93,214. We learn about the stars by receiving and interpreting the messages which their light brings to us. The message of the Companion of Sirius when it was decoded ran: ‘I am composed of material 3,000 times denser than anything you have ever come across; a ton of my material would be a little nugget that you could put in a matchbox’. What reply can one make to such a message? The reply which most of us made in 1914 was – ‘Shut up. Don’t talk nonsense.’ Arthur Stanley Eddington 1927
3,612. After the Sun destroys Earth, it burns helium for two billion years, runs out of fuel and collapses into a tiny dim white dwarf star. (Sun & Earth & Helium & White Dwarf) Can We Survive the Death of the Sun?
93,208. A white dwarf in some sense is like a bomb waiting to be lit. There’s a huge amount of energy stored in that star – gravitational energy and nuclear energy. Professor Lawrence Krauss
93,209. When the core of our dying sunlight star is compressed to about the size of the Earth, this so-called electron-degeneracy pressure takes over; gravity can collapse the star no further. It’s left to cool slowly into a bizarre stellar remnant known as a White Dwarf ... A white dwarf is the final stage in the life of a sun-like star. But it’s not quite dead yet ... This will be the fate of our Sun. The Universe: Life and Death of a Star
93,210. Slowly it disintegrates; the star is dead. All that remains is an intensely hot dead core – the red giant has become a white dwarf. (White Dwarf & Universe) How the Universe Works s1e4: Stars
93,211. At the heart of a white dwarf astronomers believe there is a giant crystal of pure diamond. A cosmic diamond thousands of kilometres across. (White Dwarf & Diamond & Universe) ibid.
93,212. The moment the white dwarf star starts to fuse carbon and oxygen into iron it’s doomed. Suddenly the white dwarf explodes. (Universe & White Dwarf) How the Universe Works s1e5: Supernovas
90,291. Scientists used to think the expanding universe was slowing down but they couldn’t prove it. Until they found double-star supernovas. Type 1As. They always explode when a white dwarf star reaches exactly 1.4 times the mass of our sun. And their explosions always release exactly the same amount of light. They are the perfect markers to measure distance in space ... But instead they got a huge surprise. (Supernova & White Dwarf & Universe) ibid.
96,072. If a star’s mass is less than the Chandrasekhar limit, it can eventually stop contracting and settle down to a possible final state as a ‘white dwarf’ with a radius of a few thousand miles and a density of hundreds of tons per cubic inch ... We observe a large number of these white dwarf stars. Stephen Hawking, A Brief History of Time p92