The far galaxies we are looking at now are around 14 billion light years away
This means that our visible bubble of space is
wait for it...
11.5 TRILLION cubic light years.
To put an equally unimaginable perspective on the size,
If the Earth could fit on the tip of pencil lead (the .7mm size), the visible universe would still be 1.5 light years away (that's 9,032,742,463,485 miles)
Talk about a needle in a hay stack. And for us to see anything, light has to bounce off of it, pass in front of a star, or be a star.
Anybody know how far away our most powerful instruments could be and still detect Earth?
Polaris, the big northern star is about 300 light years away, the light you see from it today was cast 300 years ago, if it exploded today we would not know about it for another 300 years. A star this close to earth is basically in our backyard compared to the rest of the universe.
that is some cool **** to think about. my son (14) loves science and the stars. i am going to have to ask him about this.
That's one of the cooler things I've always thought about space.
You're technically looking back in time. Even the light from Alpha-Centuri, a miniscule 4 light years away, is 4 years old before it hits your eyeballs.
If it exploded right now, we wouldn't know about it for 4 years.
I remember seeing Saturns rings thru my like, $150 telescope. Pretty frickin cool, but man does stuff in space move fast! Well.....the Earth spinning doesn't help. Taking a good long look at the Moon thru a telescope is pretty cool too.
OR, think about this as far as size/distance is concerned.
Betelgeuse, a red supergiant is 936 times larger then the Sun! If we replaced the Sun with it, that would put it's surface somwhere between Mars and Jupiter! It's not even the biggest thing out there either.
The human mind is incapable of wrapping itself around the term 'infinity'. Not the word, the actual concept. The closest they will ever come is basically 'really big'. Which is a lot like saying the closest relation to the word dog is blueberry. The biggest thing you can possibly think of in not just your experience but your entire imagination, in the grand scheme of things, doesn't exist in relation to it. If you took every planet/star/whatever that the entire human population 'knows' about and combined them into 1 place, it would still be so absolutely small in relation to space itself, it still doesn't exist.
Space is, infinite. By that alone, trying to think about 'space' beyond what we can more or less touch and feel, is impossible to actually define. Those that will try to convince others that they can actually grasp the concept, are wrong. Our brain likes logic, and conclusions. We say that xxx is yyy light years away, but it's just assigning numbers to the unassignable since we don't actually perceive light years, it's not how we live. We live in miles and how many tanks of fuel it will take to get from A to B.
Even if you run by the theory that space is circular or spheroid, that where it 'ends' is still the 'beginning', the sphere with defined edges is still so massively large that our brains can only think of it in the most dim of concepts compared to what it actually is.
If you look at religion and that some being created 'space' and all it contains, you still have to wonder how big he made it. And you can't because its too big and therefor the reasoning of why a being would make an 'object' so unbelievably huge is pointless. As far as we know it is so big, there is no ending. It goes forever and into eternity, and when every star in the entire universe has finally burnt out, it will still be expanding and maybe the only thing that ever EVER brings that expansion to a stop is the eventually gravity of all contained matter in the entire universe dragging the expansion to a stop and finally beginning its reversal until eventually it all condenses into a super massive object with infinite gravity, and explodes again. Starting the entire universe over again. And how many times it has happened before us is absolutely impossible to even guess at.
And try to figure this out. Assuming the above happens, 'where' will the center be when it actually re-condenses and explodes? If space is infinite and all encompassing, is it possible for the 'center' to actually move since there is nothing to relate it to or measure it against?
Infinite. It's crazy.
Having said all that I'm pretty sure Obama is taking credit.
Well, space isn't what matters. Space is just that, space. Space is mostly empty, Space is endless. What fascinates me is how everything got there. If I could know just one thing, that would be how everything got to be in existence. I would be happy with that.
The universe is a total mind ****. ****ing mind blowing mind ****.