Traveling the Universe

universe pic

James Thomas Smith

186,000 miles per second. Can you imagine that?

No matter how you say it…that’s fast. Check out these facts…

  • The moon, right now, is about 238,000 miles from earth. Traveling at the speed of light from the earth to the moon,  it would take less than 2 seconds to get there.
  • The Voyager 1 spacecraft which was launched into space nearly 30 years ago is still traveling into space. If you could send a radio signal to the Voyager it would take 14 hours to get there. Awesome!
  • If you could travel at the speed of light, and remember that’s 186,000 miles PER SECOND, you could fly around the earth 7.5 times in ONE SECOND. Now that’s fast!
  • Alpha Centauri, our nearest star system is 4.3 light years away. The light you see from this star system is light that was emitted 4.3 years ago. You’re looking back into history!
  • A star that is 152 light years from the earth is shining it’s light that was emitted 152 years ago when the Battle of Gettysburg was fought during the Civil War! That star system is the Gamma Librae.  It is a an orange giant that is  visible in the southern hemisphere.

When astronomers study stars more than a light year away, they’re seeing the objects as they existed at the time that light left them. Everything we see in the distant universe is, literally, history. So, when you gaze up into the night sky, remember that the light coming from the stars is light that was created a long, long, time ago.

There’s a lot of activity up there in that vast infinite universe that never ends. Do you believe there’s other forms of life existing among the trillions and trillions of planets and star systems? Just maybe. I personally believe there is life out there.

Look up more often into the night sky. You will be amazed at what you might see!

James Thomas Smith

 

References

Nola Taylor Redd
http://www.space.com/15830-light-speed.html

Cool Science Facts
http://www.coolsciencefacts.com/2006/the_speed_of_light.html

http://www.space.com/21597-libra-constellation.html

http://www.nasa.gov/connect/artspace/participate/royalty_free_resources.html#stillimages

 

 

 

About James Thomas Smith

West Virginia has been my home except for a couple of years living in California and Nevada. Family, camping, hiking, photography, treasure hunting, and writing are the things I like to do the most. The things I love and value more than anything is family. Member of Professional Writer's Alliance
This entry was posted in Op-Ed. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s