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Solar Facts


 

    All of the ancient civilizations knew about the sun.  Many mythologies had key figures (gods and goddesses) connected with the sun.  The sun was seen as an ultimate power because it brought life to the Earth.  Here are some quick facts about the sun:

 

Mass  --  2 x 1030 kg   (333,000 earth masses)

 

Radius  --  432,200 mi   (7 x 105 km or 109 earth radii)

 

Distance -- 9.3 x 107 mi   (1.5 x 108 km or 1 AU)

    If there were a road to the sun, it would take you 177 years to drive there (at 60 mph)!

 

Gravity -- 900 ft/sq. sec   (275 m/sq. sec)

    An adult weighing 140 lbs on Earth would weigh nearly 4,000 lbs on the sun!

 

Temperature -- 9930 F   (at the surface)

                        ~ 27,000,000 F   (at the core)

    Sunspots are cooler areas on the surface of the sun, relating to magnetic fields, and average around 6,300 F.

 

Rotational Velocity -- ~ 25 Earth days   (at the equator)

                                     ~ 35 Earth days    (at the poles)

    The sun rotates!  Because the sun is made of gas, as apposed to the Earth being solid, different regions of the sun rotate at different speeds.  This is one of the reasons that the sun is active with solar flares, prominences, and sunspots.

 

Spectral Type -- G2 V

    Stars are classified with spectral types, relating to the type of light they put off.  Our sun is burning mostly hydrogen and helium.  This tells us that the sun is very average.  (The classifications range from O B A F G K M R N S, with sub-classifications.

 

 

To find out more about our sun, please visit SOHO's website at http://sohowww.nascom.nasa.gov/ and NASA's website at  http://solarsystem.nasa.gov/planets/profile.cfm?Object=Sun.

 

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Website last updated March 16,  2006.  Hosted by Anthony Watts, KMXI Radio.  Webmasters Tiara Norris and Brendan Diamond.