Questions tagged [size]

Questions regarding the physical dimensions of a celestial object.

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26
votes
3answers
12k views

Is there a theoretical maximum size limit for a star?

Some stars are simply huge. Eventually, though, wouldn't there be simply too much pressure or mass for the star to sustain itself? Wouldn't it eventually collapse into a black hole? Is there a ...
19
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3answers
3k views

How can the 13.8 billion years old universe have a radius of 46 billion light years? [duplicate]

The universe is about 13.8 billion years old. Assume at the big-bang it starts from a small region and the maximum possible speed according Einstein is the speed of light how can the universe got a ...
17
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1answer
6k views

Is the Sun really a medium size star?

It is often said that the Sun is a medium size, or even dim star. Is this true? According to this list of stars within 21 light years, there are, out of the closest 121 stars, only six brighter than ...
14
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5answers
9k views

How can the universe be infinite?

I've heard from renowned astrophysicists that we don't yet know whether or not the Universe is infinite. How is that possible regarding the big bang theory is accepted (as they all do)? Are they ...
14
votes
2answers
596 views

How thick can planetary rings be?

This arose from a comment on Worldbuilding. We have data from four planets in the Solar System with rings, which doesn't make for a very good sample size. Observations of exoplanets could change that,...
13
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7answers
3k views

Relatable comparison of VY Canis Majoris to the Sun?

I was trying to describe how vast the largest known star is to someone and felt I wasn't quite able to relate the scale difference. I know it's roughly 1500 times larger than the sun. Anyone know of a ...
10
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3answers
425 views

Existence of planets larger than their host star?

The mass region of objects between ~ 0.5 Jupiter masses and 80 Jupiter masses (gas giants through to brown dwarfs and red dwarfs) is typified by an almost flat relationship with object diameter. There ...
10
votes
1answer
192 views

Why haven't more captured small moons been found?

Shouldn't captured moons have the same size distribution as asteroids? And asteroids are more common the smaller size they are. Moons are likely captured if they are in highly inclined orbits, and ...
9
votes
1answer
188 views

What was the greatest spatial extent of the Asteroid Belt prior to the Late Heavy Bombardment?

Reading the article On the asteroid belt’s orbital and size distribution (Gladman et al. 2009), there is an interest point made: asteroids a few kilometers and smaller in size are recent ...
9
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1answer
958 views

If we were to see the Sun with our naked eyes from the Orion belt, would all planets be encompassed inside the star? Is this calculable?

When we see a star it looks much bigger in diameter to us than it really is, this picture (extracted from here) explains what I mean: Notice that the point we see in the skynight, represented by the ...
8
votes
1answer
3k views

Size and mass of comet ATLAS (C/2019 Y4)

I read some news about this new comet and some unreliable sources said it is twice as big as Jupiter. I tried to find a reliable estimation of its size or mass, but I couldn't find anything. Would you ...
7
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2answers
2k views

Size of Saturn's ring material

How big are the chunks of rock ice that make up Saturn's rings? Are there many objects larger than pebble size?
6
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1answer
329 views

Can a habitable planet be smaller than 0.58 Earth radii?

According to the below image, the lowest escape velocity a planet can have in order to still be able to retain water on its surface and have a temperature above freezing is 6.5 km/s minimum. With ...
6
votes
1answer
339 views

What is the smallest diameter black hole that can be formed naturally?

I was watching the video I Put a 1mm Size Black Hole Next to Earth and This Happened - Universe Sandbox 2 discussing what would happen if a 1 millimeter black hole is orbiting the earth, and I began ...
6
votes
1answer
262 views

What is the current size of the SN1006 supernova remnant?

I was enamored by the wikipedia article of SN1006. Esp. the fact that it was so bright, it could cast shadows on the ground. (Even this idea that you could have possibly read parchment with just the ...
5
votes
1answer
8k views

How many earths fit in the observable universe?

I was pondering our insignificance, when I wondered - how much smaller is our planet then the (observable) universe? And being as I don't know how to do the math, I'm asking it here. So how many of ...
5
votes
1answer
512 views

Which is the largest planet ever observed?

I don't know much about planets outside our solar system. Do we even know the limit of the size of how large a planet or satellite can be? The largest planet I know of is Jupiter, but could there be ...
4
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1answer
53 views

Long-lived supernova remnants?

We cannot see the supernova remnant of the star that triggered the formation of the Sun and the Solar System, as the remnant dispersed and became mixed into the interstellar medium. So I am wondering, ...
4
votes
1answer
33 views

How do pressure, temperature, and gravity affect a smaller body than Earth with the same bulk composition?

Earth has a density of about ${\rm 5.513 ~g/cm^3}$ with one Earth radius and one $g$. Venus, a very similar planet to Earth and likely with about the same bulk composition, has a density of about ${\...
4
votes
1answer
243 views

Volume of Galaxies

Pretty much awkward question though. I would like to ask how is the volume of a Galaxy X is measured? For example consider milky way, what are the techniques to measure the same? How accurate and ...
3
votes
1answer
331 views

Do more massive stars become larger or smaller white dwarfs?

I wonder whether e.g. stars more massive than the Sun (but below the mass where they'd go supernova) would become larger or smaller white dwarfs than a white dwarf Sun. Since Procyon B is larger than ...
3
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1answer
136 views

If the Milky Way galaxy is as big as planet earth, how big is Earth?

If the Milky Way galaxy is as big as planet earth, how big is Earth?
3
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2answers
150 views

How much larger would a star have to be to cause thermonuclear reactions if it was made out of mostly rock like Earth, instead of gases?

I assume it would have to be considerably larger since rock isn't as flammable as gases are? But it's also more dense to begin with.. Do we know of any suns that are made like this? Is it even ...
3
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2answers
196 views

Best way to simulate star sizes to scale in celestial sphere

Using the Hipparcos catalogue, I am trying to create a celestial sphere. As all the stars are a fixed distance from the centre of this sphere, the only way to differentiate the distances and magnitude ...
3
votes
2answers
990 views

Finding the radius of a star in arcsec

If i know the radius r of a star in cm, how can I convert it to arcseconds? For example, if I have a star with r = 3.18e13 cm, and distance to the star d = 220 parsecs, what is the relation to ...
3
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1answer
59 views

How big and how far away would the moon be if earth was the size of Jupiter?

If the earth were the size of Jupiter, what would its 'moon' be in both relative size and distance? I did some quick figuring and think I roughly figured out that if placed at the position of the sun, ...
3
votes
1answer
105 views

What increases or decreases the mass and density of a fixed radius star?

Assuming a relatively even proportion of mass and radius, a 0.25 solar masses and radii star would have a density of 22.5003 g/cm³, or about 16 times our Sun's density. Keeping the radius of 0.25 ...
3
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0answers
48 views

Is there a minimum size for a galaxy to have spiral arms?

Is there a minimum size or mass for a galaxy to present spiral arms? I don't remember many small galaxies with spiral arms. Does the mechanism responsible for producing spiral arms no longer hold if ...
2
votes
1answer
93 views

When was the diameter of Titan first measured?

Titan is enshrouded in a thick opaque cloud of methane : with a telescope, you can't see the moon's surface. Because of this, from a distance, you can only see the diameter of the moon + its ...
2
votes
1answer
124 views

How do we know what the biggest star is?

Kurzgesagt claims that the largest (observable) star in the universe would be Stephenson 2-18 which is in line with Wikipedia: It is among the largest known stars, if not the largest, and one of the ...
2
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1answer
144 views

Yet another Question about the expansion of universe

A galaxy 13 billion light-years distant is 94% of the way to the big bang. The universe was 800 million years old when the light was emitted. That galaxy today is traveling away from us at 94% of the ...
2
votes
2answers
695 views

How to Find the Viewing Size of a Star

The sizes of the stars in the picture below have more to do with their brigtness than the actual size of the star. I'm looking for a formula that relates the viewing size of a star with its ...
2
votes
1answer
35 views

Largest projected images (such as shadows) observed

Serpens Nebula around the star HBC 672 (source: heic1819b) Which are the largest observed images projected onto interstellar bodies (such as nebulae) by means of electromagnetic radiation? By “largest”...
2
votes
1answer
53 views

Why doesn't star size distribution conform to space rock size distribution?

The number of space rocks is exponentially related to the size of the rocks. There are more small space rocks than big ones. Stars are most commonly the size of the sun, big and smaller stars are rare,...
1
vote
1answer
93 views

What if you 'placed' the Chicxulub asteroid onto the Earth? [closed]

We all know what sort of devastating impact an asteroid could have if it collided with the Earth. But I'm curious to know what the effects would be if you removed the speed element from it, and were ...
1
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1answer
224 views

If the whole observable Universe is as big as planet Earth, how big would Earth be?

If the whole observable Universe is as big as planet Earth, how big would Earth be?
1
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2answers
589 views

What would be the apparent magnitude of Betelgeuse if it were as close to Earth as Sirius?

How large and bright would Betelgeuse appear if it were as close to Earth as Sirius, before and after it goes supernova?
1
vote
1answer
57 views

Do celestial bodies actually appear larger along the horizon? [duplicate]

Whether it be the moon (especially when full) or tonight, as Mars is closer than it has been in decades, it appears that these bodies are larger when close to the horizon than overhead. Is this an ...
1
vote
1answer
56 views

Inconsistent online radius value for Proxima Centauri

I was looking up the radius of Proxima Centauri and got a funny result. Google says it's about 100,000 km, while WolframAlpha says its about 200,000 km. Are the error bars that big, or does someone ...
1
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2answers
447 views

Retrieving input effective radius from Sérsic profile

I'm playing around with Sérsic profiles, and would like to retrieve the effective (half-light) radius that I put in by integration of the profile. I'm not managing to, so perhaps someone can help me ...
1
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1answer
1k views

If earth were the size of a marble would it be smoother than a marble? [closed]

As the title states, If earth were the size of a marble would it be smoother than a marble?
1
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2answers
3k views

Is there some upper limit in the moon size distribution?

The planets range hugely in sizes, Jupiter is more than 300 times as massive as Earth. But the sizes of the large moons seem to be uncorrelated with the sizes of the planets they orbit. Why doesn't ...
1
vote
1answer
70 views

can we calculate the velocity of galaxies at the edge of the observable universe?

I read this post Does the edge of the Universe travel faster than the speed of light? but there was no calculation, so I tried it thusly: The observable universe is 28.5 Gpc (gigaparsecs) = 28500 ...
1
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1answer
98 views

Do astronomers and astrophysicists more often use diameters or radii when discussing about planets, dwarf planets, exoplanets and stars?

Mathematicians much more often use radii over diameters when discussing about circles and spheres, because in mathematics the radius is more fundamental than the diameter (the sphere is defined using ...
1
vote
1answer
661 views

Relationship between temperature of nebula and size of star

I was wondering, in the process of star formation, does the temperature of the nebula that produces a star play a role in the size of that star? I mean, it's only logical that the size would depend on ...
1
vote
1answer
340 views

What are angular sizes of thin and thick disks in our Galaxy?

What are diapasons of galactic coordinates for thin and thick disks of our Galaxy?
1
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1answer
31 views

Different sizes of bow shocks

In this image of LL Ori bow shock, there is a smaller bow shock at the upper right. Is that second bow shock substantially smaller than the LL Ori bow shock, or is it just much further away? If ...
1
vote
1answer
615 views

How do we get the angular size of a crater without lens?

Suppose I want to calculate the diameter of the crater. I apply the small angle formula $$diameter=\frac{\theta_{diameter}}{206265''}\times D$$ where $\theta_{diameter}$ is the angular size of the ...
1
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1answer
957 views

The moon: how to determine its size, speed and distance from earth using a simple telescope?

Assuming I only have a simple telescope, how can I determine the size of the moon, its angular velocity and distance from earth?
1
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0answers
38 views

How big could a regular star in supergiant/hypergiant phase theoretically get, not counting quasi-stars?

For clarity, I'm not asking about the super-behemoths that are quasi-stars. I'm interested in knowing how large a regular star could theoretically get once it reached supergiant/hypergiant phase, ...