The Sun is an almost perfectly symmetric yellow dwarf star [spectral class G2V] which is at the center of our Solar System.

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354 views

Why aren't solar panels efficient?

Why can't solar panels produce 1 Kw per 1 square meter? This is the energy of the Sun's radiation per square meter on Earth but solar panels don't come close. Why can't we trap all that energy? ...
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3answers
6k views

How fast will the sun become a red giant?

I've read many accounts of our sun's distant fate, but what I've never heard is on what time scale these events occur. For instance, when the sun runs out of hydrogen, I presume it doesn't just WHAM! ...
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6answers
3k views

Can the apparent equal size of sun and moon be explained or is this a coincidence?

Is there a possible explanation for the apparent equal size of sun and moon or is this a coincidence? (An explanation can involve something like tide-lock effects or the anthropic principle.)
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3answers
203 views

A question once confused Confucius

A well known story "Two Children arguing about the sun" (From Lie Zi, ca. 500BC): On the way traveling to the east, Confucius saw two children were arguing. One child thought that the sun is ...
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1answer
67 views

Question about the refraction of Fresnel lenses

If you line up the suns rays parallel to a Fresnel lens, the light is concentrated, and the focus directly underneath. However, what happens if the sun is off to the side, making the light hit at an ...
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1answer
214 views

Strömgren Sphere of Sun

I have a homework problem: The Sun emits $ \sim5 x 10^{23}$ photons per second with $hν > 13.6$ $eV$. If the density of hydrogen atoms in interplanetary space is $n =$ $109 m^{-3}$, what ...
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2answers
172 views

Is it possible to focus the sun in such way?

Imagine the sliding part of the mirror is controlled by computer and opens on intervals. Is it possible to increase the power of the beam by making it bounce between the mirrors thus going through ...
8
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1answer
154 views

The effect of dark lines in the Sun's spectrum on reflected paint/ color

Its well known that the Sun's spectrum is not continuous, and that there are dark bands within the suns spectrum. Is it possible to produce a color of paint that is bright in, say, indoor lighting and ...
2
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1answer
2k views

Application of diffraction problem!

Here is a problem that I am working on, which is the applying the concepts of diffraction to the setting of the sun: Air has a small, usually negligible index of refraction. It is 1.0002926. This ...
4
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3answers
408 views

Calculating the solar power hitting Earth

I'm trying to calculate the amount of power from the sun hitting the earth, but I am getting a number which is off by a factor of ~4. I calculate the "area" of the earth, as seen from the sun, and ...
3
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1answer
2k views

What size will the Sun become once it is a red giant?

How big will the Sun be once it becomes a red giant? How much of the solar system will it engulf?
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2answers
159 views

Gravitational Effect Versus the Speed of Light [duplicate]

If, for some reason, the sun were to suddenly disappear altogether, I would like to know the following: would we "feel" it first (i.e. being thrown into outer space due to no longer having anything ...
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3answers
9k views

How long until the sun cannot sustain human life on earth?

The sun will last, at its current brightness for 9 billion more years. How long until the sun gets burned down to the point where it cannot sustain life on Earth anymore? Updated: I am more concerned ...
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3answers
424 views

How can anything be hotter than the Sun?

I've heard that if a space shuttle enters the atmosphere from a bad angle its surface will become so hot that it will be hotter than the surface of the Sun. How can that be? It seems to an uneducated ...
4
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3answers
122 views

When was the earliest understanding that the stars were similar to the Sun?

When did astronomers realise that the stars were similar to the Sun? I'm not asking for when this was established, but when also the hypothesis was first proposed.
3
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2answers
379 views

Producing energy from magnetic flux loops

I've simplified this down by quite a lot but as far as I understand it, magnetic fields on the Sun's surface twist together and when it gets all a bit too much they release energy. My question is why ...
0
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1answer
114 views

How faster is the effect of force exerted by gravity? [duplicate]

We all know that Earth revolves around the Sun due to Gravitational force of the Sun. Also we know that it takes just over 8 minutes for the Sun's light to reach Earth. Now let us say, hypothetically ...
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1answer
315 views

calculating the solar declination

I was looking at this page http://www.illustratingshadows.com/www-formulae-collection.pdf and found the equation used for estimating the solar declination (sun declination). One problem, though, I ...
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2answers
581 views

Entropy of the Sun

Is it possible to measure or calculate the total entropy of the Sun? Assuming it changes over time, what are its current first and second derivatives w.r.t. time? What is our prediction on its ...
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0answers
44 views

When sun is exactly overhead in my place in the tropics [closed]

What formula to use to find dates and times when the sun is exactly overhead in my place in the tropics?
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1answer
125 views
3
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1answer
135 views

Can the Solar System be assumed a single body concentrated in the Sun?

This question springs from a comment against my question posted on the Space SE My questions may seem inane, or obvious to most of you real physics people too ... Any number of sources put the peg ...
4
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2answers
216 views

How to measure declination of sun and moon?

I came by some graphs showing the declination for sun and moon (between angles of -30° and +30°). The graphs look very much like sine waves. I googled a bit and read about what the declination is, ...
11
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2answers
201 views

Could a mirror array used for thermal solar power plant double as a telescope at night?

I was looking at the Ivanpah Solar facility and it occurred to me that the large array of mirrors could double as some sort of telescope array at night. The climate in the desert would be ideal for ...
5
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4answers
760 views

The Sun as a gravitational lens

Since the Sun is a gravitational lens with as focal length of 550 AU for visible light, with an immense amplification factor, shouldn't it light up objects hanging out there? We should get solar ...
2
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1answer
87 views

Does the sun's bearing at a given time vary, and if so, how?

More an astronomy question, but Physics is the closest stack exchange category I could find and Google doesn't have the answer. Granted, the sun's elevation changes for a given time of day throughout ...
33
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3answers
8k views

Why is the sky not purple?

I realise the question of why this sky is blue is considered reasonably often here, one way or another. You can take that knowledge as given. What I'm wondering is, given that the spectrum of ...
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3answers
295 views

How can sunlight be white , but pictures of the sun be orange?

I was thinking about elementary physics today and realised: We learned and proved that sunlight is white. But i don't understand why when you look at a picture of a satellite orbiting the sun , it(the ...
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2answers
2k views

How long until we fall into the Sun?

As a planet moves through the solar system, a bow shock is formed as the solar wind is decelerated by the magnetic field of the planet. Presumably the creation of this shock wave would cause drag on ...
0
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1answer
118 views

Why was Galilei “right”? [duplicate]

Considering that all frames are equivalent, isn't it up to the observer to say "The earth turns around the sun" or "The sun turns around the earth"? Isn't this more or less like arguing about which ...
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1answer
541 views

What is the electric charge has the sun and the corona of the sun?

What is the net electric charge (in magnitude and sign) of the sun and its corona?
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3answers
2k views

Why is the colour of sunlight yellow?

I was going through the preliminary papers of other schools and found a question that I did not know. It was "Why sunlight appears yellow?". Can anyone answer it?
3
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1answer
252 views

What is the sun's spectral series?

My physics book says that six colors can be distinctly seen in white light: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet. Does solar light only use these six wavelengths and mix them additively, or ...
2
votes
2answers
485 views

How to calculate the amount of night time during a flight?

I have been asked to find a way to calculate the amount of time that a flight takes during night time. So far, I have the departure latitude and longitude and the time of takeoff, the arrival ...
7
votes
1answer
365 views

Has Voyager 1 entered a solar radiation belt?

The Voyager 1 probe was sent out in 1977 to go where no man made object has gone before, after more than 35 years it’s still going strong. It’s now 124 AU away from Earth and many are wondering when ...
0
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4answers
122 views

Revolution of Earth [duplicate]

If all motion is relative, how do we know that the Earth revolves around the sun? Or we are just making the above statement from the frame of reference in which Sun is at the origin?
6
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1answer
223 views

Can solar furnace achieve higher temperature than sun surface? [duplicate]

Can solar furnace achieve higher temperature than sun surface? I guess not, but I'm not sure about that. Can you check my reasoning: -------- My reasoning ----------- Consider Sun as a black body ...
8
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1answer
329 views

How can one get the eccentricity of the orbit of the Sun around center of the Milky Way?

How can one get the eccentricity of the orbit of the Sun around center of the Milky Way? Can it be measured?
9
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5answers
509 views

sun-moon-earth anomaly

When one looks at the sun and the moon in the sky together, why is it that the illuminated crescent of the moon does NOT "point" at the sun? (More correctly the perpendicular bisector of the straight ...
6
votes
3answers
810 views

Why does the light side of the moon appear not to line up correctly with the evening sun?

I live at roughly 52.4,-2.1. On a sunny evenings I've often looked at the moon and the sun and noticed that the light part of the moon does not appear to line up with the sun. For example, at about ...
2
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1answer
420 views

How much does sunlight affect inside temperature?

Suppose we have a $3\cdot 3\cdot 3\,m^3$ room of which one side is glass. And suppose that the other 5 sides have no effect on temperature (super isolation). We know from physics how to calculate ...
2
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2answers
239 views

How is the sun's equatorial circumference measured?

How is the sun's equatorial circumference measured by scientists?
3
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1answer
96 views

How does irradiance behave over time?

I am trying to clarify data on weather from the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI); I have incorporated the Solar Position Algorithm (SPA), such that I can calculate sunset and sunrise ...
3
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1answer
302 views

Calculating the length of day at any time of the year? [duplicate]

Is it possible to calculate the length of the day at various location (distances) from the sun? I hear agricultural scientists are able to do that. To make calculations easier assume there is no axis ...
6
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1answer
776 views

Is there a simple yet accurate formula for where on Earth the Sun and Moon are directly overhead?

I'm trying to improve a site that shows the region of the Earth currently under daylight, and I need a formula that, given the current time, tells where (latitude/longitude) the sun and moon are ...
0
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1answer
229 views

Does brown but transparent swimming pool water heat significantly faster than western style highly chlorinated pools?

Eastern European swimming pools are often brown tinted water. i was told it was the color of the chemical to keep the pools clean, but who knows. These pools did not smell unsanitary and may have even ...
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1answer
1k views

When should angles be expressed in degrees vs. radians?

I am trying to calculate the albedo of a given latitude by following the methods of Brutsaert (1982), I have copied the formula below: 3.6 Shortwave and long-wave radiative fluxes Albedo ...
7
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2answers
192 views

Must a vertical sundial face exactly South?

I am a sundial. I'm prepared to bet Your watch can't tell when the sun will set I once heard Frank King talk about sundials in particular this very cool one, which measures Babylonian hours ...
5
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2answers
322 views

Attenuation mass-thickness for sunset light

We are able to look directly at the sun near sunset and sunrise, which clearly demonstrates the fact that our atmosphere attenuates visible light. Let's imagine it follows the typical attenuation ...
7
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3answers
1k views

How many percent of the visible light reaching the Earth are from other stars than the Sun?

How many percent of the whole visible light reaching the Earth are from other stars than the Sun? Is it maybe 0,5 - 1% or is my guess already too much? I am interested mainly in visible light, but ...