In about a year from now, a Total Solar Eclipse will occur right here in Western Australia! On 20th April 2023, Exmouth will be one of the best places in the world to experience this fascinating phenomenon, when the Moon moves between the Sun and Earth, blocking the light of the Sun from reaching Earth. This causes an eclipse of the Sun as the moon casts a shadow onto Earth.
Here are some more amazing facts about the Sun.
1. How Big is the Sun?
The Sun is so big we could theoretically squash in 1.3 million Earths! The Sun’s diameter is 1.4 million kms which is equal to lining up 109 Earths across its face.
2. How Far Away is the Sun?
The Sun ranges between 147 to 152 million km from Earth, due to the Earths elliptical orbit around the Sun. The average Earth-Sun distance is about 150 million km, also known as 1 Astronomical Unit or 1 AU.
3. How Hot is the Sun?
The Sun generates huge amounts of energy through nuclear fusion at its core. Hydrogen is converted into Helium, reaching temperatures of 15 million degrees Celsius and out at the surface between 5,000 to 5,700 degrees Celsius.
4. How Long Does Sunlight Take to Reach Earth?
When you watch the Sun about to sink below the horizon, remember that in fact, it already has! That’s because it takes the Sun’s light 8 minutes to reach us here on Earth, travelling at the speed of light, which is 300,000 km per second.
5. Creating the Northern & Southern Lights
Solar Winds are plasma streams of hot, charged particles that eject from the Sun, travelling at 450km per second. When they interact with Earth’s atmosphere, the mesmerising Aurora Borealis and Aurora Australis can be generated.
6. How Old is the Sun?
The Sun is believed to be about 4.5 billion years old and only half-way through its life, or middle-aged. It has burned up about half its Hydrogen and still has enough left to burn for another 4.5 billion years.
Need a Dark Sky?
Next year, Western Australia will have a Solar Eclipse travel across the state!
Find out where the eclipse will be and what it means for Western Australia below!