Oh, heav­ens!

Getaway (South Africa) - - Gear -

• Most of the stars you see in the night sky are big­ger and brighter than the sun. The dimmest of the 50 most prom­i­nent stars in our sky is Al­pha Cen­tauri, which is more than 1.5 times brighter than the sun. • The far­thest object spot­ted by the Hub­ble Space Tele­scope is a tiny red smudge about 13.4 bil­lion light years away, near the dawn of the birth of the uni­verse. • The object gen­er­ally re­garded as the most dis­tant the av­er­age back­yard as­tronomer can see is the quasar 3C273, about 2.5 bil­lion light years away. • There are 200 – 400 bil­lion stars in our Milky Way galaxy. The Hub­ble re­veals an es­ti­mated 100 bil­lion gal­ax­ies in the uni­verse, but this num­ber is likely to in­crease to about 200 bil­lion as space tele­scope tech­nol­ogy im­proves.

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