Beauty, Creativity, and Healing
Edited By Bandy Lee, Nancy Olson and Thomas Duffy
Extraterrestrial Beauty: Science of the Sun
by Leon Golub
It’s fairly clear that the Sun matters for life on Earth and that it has a major influence on our environment. Too little Sun and the world becomes dark, gloomy and cold; too much Sun and it becomes unbearably hot and dry. Every day we feel the effect of its coming and going—literally the difference between night and day.
But getting beyond that basic perception requires something like a scientific understanding. The Sun is not the same size and distance as the Moon, appearances notwithstanding. It does not go around the Earth, even though it looks as if it does. Figuring out what it is, what it’s made of, why it glows so brightly, how old it is, how long it will last—all of these take much thought and experiment. The purpose of this essay is to begin to get at some of that understanding, to explore what we know about the Sun and how we have come to know it.
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