why do we need the sun for kids
Why Do We Study the Sun? We look at the sun rising every day. Itвs bright, itвs big and it warms us up. Our sun happens to be the brightest object in our universe and naturally we are really curious to know more about it. Our sun gives us light, heat and energy. It may seem that energy comes from other sources such as gasoline and electricity but the ultimate source of energy for the Earth is nothing else but the sun. Without the sun life on Earth would not exist. It would be so cold that no living thing would be able to survive and our planet would be completely frozen. Photo above: Students of Parkland Magnet School in Rockville, MD trace sunspots using sunspotters. Photo credit: NASA/Silvia Stoyanova. The sun is a normal star. It is much closer to us than any other star, and by studying the sun, we can therefore learn more about other stars. The better we understand other stars, the more we know about the Milky Way. From there we know more about other galaxies and in the end we learn more about the universe. The sun also plays the role of a big anchor, which creates gravity that keeps our planet and the other planets of the solar system in a small space.
If it weren't for the sun, our planet would simply fly off loose into the universe. Photo above: Research SOHO scientist Daniel Mueller from the European Space Agency talks to students of Parkland Magnet School in Rockville, MD. Photo credit: NASA/Silvia Stoyanova. Our sun is very dynamic and it changes constantly. It has the largest eruptions in the solar system. These eruptions can be so large that they can reach our planet and cause serious damage by disrupting satellites and other communication devices. Our TV may not work, our cell phones will be down, a high speed train may run loose and if an astronaut happens to be on the moon at the time when the sun erupts, he or she would be in great danger. NASA uses satellites such as the, to predict these eruptions so that we have a warning of at least 2-3 days to protect our expensive communication devices during a solar eruption. SOHO is just one of the instruments that NASA uses to help scientists understand our sun better along with other satellites and large observatories on Earth.
Here is what all of us should know about the sun. YOUR TOP 10 SUN FACTS: 1. The sun is a star. This makes it extremely important for life on Earth. The sun provides us with energy, which brings life on our planet. It defines the seasons, the harvests, and even the sleep patterns of all living creatures on Earth. 2. The sun is the closest star to our planet. Imagine two cars on the road during the night with their headlights on. One car is closer to you and the other one is far away. Which headlights would seem brighter and bigger? That explains why we see the sun so big and bright. It is simply the nearest star to Earth. 3. Remember! The Earth orbits around the sun. 4. The sun is way bigger than the Earth. In fact its radius is 109 times bigger than the radius of the Earth. For those of you who are curious, the sunвs Radius is 696,000km and the Earthвs radius is 6, 376km. 5. DONвT TOUCH THE SUN! ITвS HOT! The sunвs average surface temperature is 5700 C. Compare that to the Earthвs average temperature, which is 20 C. 6.
The sun is 150 million km (93 million miles) away from the Earth. 7. How old is the sun? Can you imagine 4. 5 billion years? 8. We know that the Earthвs structure consists of different layers. The sun also has layers but unlike the Earth, the sun is entirely gaseous; there is no solid surface. 9. The sun rotates on its axis approximately once every 26 days. The sun is made of gas, which is why its different parts rotate at different speeds. The fastest rotation is around the equator and the slowest rotation is at the sunвs polar regions (more than 30 days). 10. The sun changes. No matter when or where we look at the sun, we will always see something interesting. Scientists observe these changes by watching the sunspots. They increase and decrease on a regular cycle of about 10. 8 years.
Here comes the Sun! For kids who want to know all about this recycled, middle-aged and rather common star that gives us life, Sun is the one.
Kids will enjoy descriptions of how Earthвs tilted orbit around the Sun creates the seasons, and enjoy learning about the different kinds of solar eclipses. Need a snack? How about taking a bite out of the Sun: We do it every time we eat plants that have stored the Sunвs energy in its leaves. But the Sunвs mighty power can also cause harm: Without the atmosphere to deflect the Sunвs solar wind, the average temperature on Earth would be 250ВF degrees and weвd be fried to a crisp! So how do we study the Sun if we canвt look directly at it? Simple в by viewing it through special telescopes that reveal its invisible ultraviolet and infrared light waves. Sun worshippers in ancient history didnвt have this option, but they did much to honor the Sun in art, music, and dance в even developing our yearly calendar around it. Also included: information on pulsars, supernovaes and other solar sisters of our Sun. For kids curious about alternative energy, an overview of solar power through the ages will also be interesting.
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why do we need the sun for kids
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