It is clear that our planet lives thanks to several factors that make life possible, both human, animal and plant. One of these factors is the Sun, that huge star that centers our Solar System and by which life is governed on planet Earth.
For years, many scientists have already studied how many years of life a stellar giant can have, with which all living beings on the planet would die if it did not exist.
Thanks to past research, we know that the Sun is about 4.6 billion years old , according to an investigation by Science Alert, the brightest star in our Solar System could die in about 10 billion years.
According to studies, the Sun increases its brightness by 10% every billion years, when its time comes it will turn into a reddish star to transform into a white dwarf star. Looking at it from our human perspective, we have approximately this time left to figure out how to get off Earth and install the human race on another planet, for now, unknown.
In the article published in the prestigious scientific journal, Albert Zijlstra, an astrophysicist at the University of Manchester, explains the process of “death” of a star, which they assume will also end up being the death of the Sun: “When a star dies, it expels a mass of gas and dust, known as its envelope, into space. The envelope can be up to half the mass of the star. This reveals the core of the star , which at this point in the star’s life is running out of fuel, eventually shutting down and before finally dying.
This means that the possible disappearance of the Sun in the next 10 billion years will be a process and will not happen overnight. The star will go from being a planetary nebula, to a large cloud of dust and gas made up of hydrogen and helium, only to gradually fade away.
This process usually occurs with the birth of many stars or with their death, and it would be similar when the Sun stops giving light to planet Earth. This is how the Hubble Telescope captured the process in the planetary nebula Hen 2-437 while a star was dying :
Hen 2-437, a planetary nebula located within the north constellation of Vulpecula (the Fox).
Those symmetrical, outstretched “wings” are the gaseous outer layers of a dying star: https://t.co/Pz8JQ9KMry pic.twitter.com/5IvcpjaF9J
— Hubble Space Telescope (@HubbleTelescope) September 9, 2021