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The Enigmatic Beauty of Stars: A Glimpse through the Atmosphere and the Disappearance from the Night Sky

Summary

Stars, celestial bodies that captivate us with their luminosity and beauty, have always been objects of our curiosity. If we gaze at the night sky, we will notice that stars “twinkle.” But have we ever wondered why? And do we […]

Neprocenjiva lepota zvezda: Pogled kroz atmosferu i nestanak sa noćnog neba

Stars, celestial bodies that captivate us with their luminosity and beauty, have always been objects of our curiosity. If we gaze at the night sky, we will notice that stars “twinkle.” But have we ever wondered why? And do we know how many stars exist in the entire universe?

Twinkling Stars

Our atmosphere has a significant influence on how we perceive stars. The presence of the atmosphere causes the light coming from distant stars to constantly refract and scatter. Different layers of the atmosphere, with their varying densities, temperatures, and air movements, create the effect of twinkling when we observe stars near the horizon. However, scientists employ various techniques and systems, such as adaptive optics, to mitigate the impact of the atmosphere and obtain clearer and more stable observations of stars and other celestial bodies.

The Color of the Sun

Another illusion caused by our atmosphere is the color of the sun. Although we see it as yellow, the true color of our sun is white. The air molecules in the atmosphere scatter shorter wavelengths of visible light, giving our sky its blue color. On the other hand, longer wavelengths, including yellow and orange, scatter less and reach our eyes directly, giving the sunlight its familiar warm glow.

An Incomprehensible Number of Stars

Estimating the exact number of stars in the universe is extremely challenging, but according to recent scientific research from NASA, it is believed that there are more stars than grains of sand on Earth. While it is not possible to count all the stars, it is estimated that their number exceeds 1 quadrillion, which is an immense figure.

Disappearing from the Night Sky

Unfortunately, there is a growing disappearance of stars from the night sky. According to a recent study, the number of stars visible to the naked eye has decreased by 7 to 10 percent from 2011 to 2022. The reason behind this negative trend is the increased “light pollution” resulting from population growth, urban expansion, and the widespread use of LED lighting. If this trend continues, the number of visible stars will dramatically decrease in less than two decades.

FAQ:

Q: Why do stars twinkle?
A: Stars “twinkle” due to the refraction and scattering of light by different layers of the atmosphere.

Q: What is the color of the Sun?
A: Although we see it as yellow, the true color of the Sun is white.

Q: How many stars are there in the universe?
A: The exact number of stars in the universe cannot be determined, but it is estimated that there are more stars than grains of sand on Earth.

Q: Why are stars disappearing from the night sky?
A: The disappearance of stars from the night sky is caused by increased “light pollution” resulting from population growth, urban expansion, and the use of LED lighting.