That Will Have You Spaced OutIt’s calming to know that the universe is so vast. Beyond Earth, there’s so much to explore. Click here to learn some amazing facts about astronomy!
Do you ever just look up at the night sky with complete amazement at how expansive it is?
To say the night sky is impressive would be a huge understatement. But, the night sky is probably a lot more interesting than you even know.
If you’re looking to learn some facts about astronomy, you’ve come to the right place.
Check out this guide to discover the top facts about the night sky that will have you spaced out!
1. We’ve Been Making Star Maps for a Long Time
While we’ve always known that people have been studying astronomy for thousands of years, we don’t really know when astronomers started making maps of the stars.
That is, until 1987. It was in the year 1987 that archeologists opened a sealed tomb in the ancient university of Jiatong in the city of Xian, China. In the tomb, they discovered something quite remarkable- a detailed map of the starts that dated back to 25 BC.
Over 30 years later, this is still the oldest map of the stars that scientists have been able to locate. It’s pretty cool to think that thousands of years ago, people were in awe of the night sky just as they are today.
2. Shooting Star or Something Else?
When looking up at the night sky, you may have seen what appears to be a star moving.
However, objects that burn brightly, fall through the night sky quickly, and then fade away are not actually stars. They’re meteors and comets. Comets are made up of chunks of natural debris from space, as well as ice and rock.
They travel through the outer limits of the solar system, and occasionally, their particles fall onto the earth. If you see what appears to be a star shooting across the sky, it’s likely a satellite.
3. There’s More Than One Aurora
When most of us hear the word “aurora”, we think of the Aurora Borealis, aka, the Northern Lights. These lights, as many people know can be visible from Europe and North America.
One very popular spot to view them is Iceland.
However, did you know that there are also Southern Lights? Known as Aurora Australis, the Southern Lights are best seen from New Zealand, Australia, and Antarctica.
4. Constellations Change Shapes
Most people are familiar with at least a few constellations, like the Big Dipper and Orion’s Belt.
But, did you know that constellations change shape over time? While you won’t notice any difference in your lifetime, constellations change shape over the course of hundreds of thousands of years.
This is due to gravitational forces and the expansion of the universe. You can get to know the constellations better from a place like Melbourne Star Observation Wheel.
5. Black Holes Don’t “Suck” Things In
Out of all of the elements of the night sky, black holes are probably the most mystifying.
Many people are under the impression that black holes work like vacuums, sucking matter in from their surroundings. However, this is not the case.
Black holes pull matter toward them thanks to their huge gravitational fields. They don’t need to rely on any sort of pressure to bring objects toward them.
Are You Ready to Explore the Night Sky?
Now that you’ve read these facts about astronomy, you’ll be able to gaze at the night sky with more appreciation. You may even want to invest in a telescope so you can enjoy the night sky at a closer view.
Be sure to check back in with our blog for more interesting articles like this one!