The sun is a powerful force that sustains life on Earth. But its power could one day be used to extinguish us all. This is the topic of discussion in the Naked Science documentary, Death of the Sun, which dives into the birth and potential demise of our primary star.
As with any living thing, the aging process can prove to be a formidable challenge. In this case, scientists needed to determine how old the Sun is in order to gain an understanding of its remaining lifespan – something that was thought impossible because of its volatile and scorching environment. A team of researchers developed a revolutionary approach for collecting atoms from the core of the Sun and using it to calculate its age. The fascinating venture was aided by Hollywood stunt pilot who jumped out of an airplane in order to capture these essential atoms.
The research did not stop there either; scientists from various institutes around the United States were interviewed about their findings regarding how energy is emitted from the core and how soundwaves can be utilized to know more about our star’s age. Space forecasters also provided information on violent episodes in recent history that could impact life on Earth if they were to occur again.
Death of the Sun pulls back the curtain on one of nature’s most promising yet dangerous forces: The sun. It highlights not just what we stand to gain from its presence but also what we may face if its life comes to an end prematurely. An astrologer puts it best when he says, “All stars have a limited lifetime” – reminding us all that perhaps nothing is as impermeable as we would like it to be. For those passionate about astronomy and space exploration – or anyone wanting to learn more about our celestial neighbor – this documentary provides an invaluable insight into one of nature’s greatest mysteries and encourages viewers to contemplate their own mortality in light of such revelations.