Tag Archives: light years

What Has Happened Or What Will Happen To Betelgeuse (In Orion) — When It Is 700 Light-Years Away.

by Anura Guruge

Click to access U.K. “Daily Mail” article.

Click to ENLARGE if you are NOT familiar with ‘Betelgeuse’.

Click to ENLARGE and read here. Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Betelgeuse

As soon as I saw the headline in the U.K. ‘Daily Mail’ I knew it was going to be amusing. To be fair, and to their credit, they did make a decent enough fist of trying to explain the ‘dilemma’.

And what is that ‘dilemma’. When we are talking about stars, including our own Sun, we have to factor in the delay it takes for light from it to reach us. In the case of the Sun it takes 8 minutes and 20 seconds. Has to do with the enormous distances involved and the speed of light (which, though very fast, is only ‘that’ fast). So, if something was to happen to the Sun it would be 8 minutes and 20 seconds before we saw anything. Just the laws of physics.

Betelgeuse is ~640 light years away. That means it takes light from Betelgeuse ~640 years to arrive to us, on Earth.

So, we are seeing Betelgeuse as it was ~640 years ago!

Think about that.

When looking at stars we are always looking way back … into history.

We just have NO, NO, NO WAY of knowing what is happening at Betelgeuse right now.

All we see is what happened ~640 years ago.

So, it is difficult to write about ‘future’ events involving stars. The event might have already happened! We just don’t know.

That is the problem with this article. Betelgeuse could have already exploded — without us knowing.

Think about it. It is cool. SMILE.

P.S., All the stars that make up Orion are not the same distance away from us!

Betelgeuse is much closer than most of the others in that constellation! Something else to think about.

Click to ENLARGE.

Related posts:
Category ‘Astronomy’.

by Anura Guruge


7 New Earth-Size Exoplanets Announced By NASA Is A Red Herring.

by Anura Guruge


Click to access NASA’s official page for this discovery.

Come ON! This is just straight old Soviet Union-like propaganda. NASA trying to drum up some publicity in case Trump decides to chop its budget.

Why am I being so NEGATIVE about this new discovery and these 7 new Exoplanets.

Very simple. Because it means NOTHING. So what?

There have to be BILLIONS & BILLIONS, more likely TRILLIONS & TRILLIONS Exoplanets in the Universe. Simple as that.

That we found 7, 40 Light Years away means diddly. Just means that is as far as our CURRENT technology let us get.

We already know of and have catalogued upwards of 3,560 Exoplanets. So 7 new ones, however much they may look like Earth isn’t that exciting.

Plus, 40 Light Years is way, way, way too far.

The furthest we have managed to get, since the start of the Space Age 60 years ago, is 1.6 Light Days. Yes, 1.6 Lights Days. We have to go 228 times further to make that 1 Light Year.

So we have managed 1.6 Light Days in 40 years. So at this rate, assuming speed stays the same, it will take us 9,120 YEARS to complete 1 Light Year.

So, we are talking crazy distances, crazy timeframes.

MORE THAN LIKELY there is other life out there.

To always assume that this other life HAS to have the same requirements of Oxygen, water etc. in order to be a LIFEFORM is crazy and very provincial.

We just don’t know.

There could be life out there that is much more efficient that us. Maybe lifeforms that breathe pure hydrogen. Who knows.

But, this announcements doesn’t excite me.

Just a distraction.


Click to ENLARGE and READ here. See how far we have managed to get SO FAR. Just about 1.5 LIGHT DAY. Not even 2 light days. Give me a BREAK. This is from: http://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov/where/

exop111Related posts:
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by Anura Guruge

NASA’s Exoplanet Announcement, February 22, 2017 — Wouldn’t Get Too Excited.

by Anura Guruge


Click to access NASA’s press release IF you are really interested. Doesn’t say much other than date and time.

As a cynic I am skeptical that they will have anything ‘Earth Shattering’ — and IF they, by some miracle do, IT would be beyond extraordinary.

The nearest Exoplanet we know of now (and we know of over 3,500) is 4.2 LIGHT YEARS away. That is quite the distance.

Now MAYBE they will tell us that AT LAST we have picked up some radio signals that look like they are intentional. That is as much as I am expecting and even that is a HUGE stretch.

But, let’s wait and see. Just about 12 hours away.

Bon Chance!

> >> UPDATE << <<

I was right! 40 light years AWAY!

Pie in the sky. More later (i.e., tonight).

This was NOT big news. We know of 3,500+ exoplanets already.

There HAS to be other life somewhere … We can’t be alone, we can’t be unique.

This belief that other life will be similar to us is not kosher.

Not sure that water HAS to be a prerequisite. I think we need to be more broadminded. There could be life that lives off Hydrogen. That would be much easier. More of it too.

Later … I am writing another book. No, not on exoplanets.


An artist rendition of what an exoplanet will look like.

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by Anura Guruge

The Other Bright ‘Star’ In The Night Sky, Over NH, Is ‘Sirius’, Low To The East, Below Jupiter.

Anura Guruge, laughing, picture November 16, 2011.


by Anura Guruge

Related post:
>> That Bright Yellow ‘Star’ In The Night Sky Over New Hampshire, Is Jupiter — Dec. 3, 2012.

Click to ENLARGE.

Click to ENLARGE.

Jupiter, given that it is invariably higher in the sky, will most likely be the bright object that first arouses your curiosity and awe.

If it is later in the night you might see a very bright, burning WHITE star, close to the tree line, maybe even glimpsed through the trees in the East. That would be Sirius, the Dog Star — the brightest star in the night sky. It is actually brighter than Jupiter. This serious brightness of Sirius is due to two factors: it is relatively nearby and it is big — twice as big as the Sun. It is 8.6 light years away. So what we are seeing now, in December 2012, is what Sirius was doing 8 years 7 months ago.

Many never think about this. Light thought it travels fast, still has a speed limit. So if an object is far away, it does take time before light from that object gets to us. Even Sun light takes 8.3 minutes to reach us. The light from Jupiter (i.e., sunlight reflected off Jupiter’s gaseous, yellowish atmosphere) takes nearly 35 minutes to reach us. So in reality when we look up and see Jupiter, we are not actually seeing Jupiter in ‘real time’. We are seeing Jupiter as it was 34.9 minutes ago. Think about that. You can have fun pondering this. ‘Rigel‘, the bright white star that makes up the leg of Orion, is ~860 light years away. So what we are seeing is light that left Rigel 860 years ago. For all we know Rigel could have exploded — supernovaed. It would be 860 years before we would see it.

So the next time you look up at the night sky remember that much of what you are seeing is in time lapse. Light that was there sometime before.