Timeline for Earth after our sun begins to die?
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11-04-2016, 04:46 PM
RE: Timeline for Earth after our sun begins to die?
If the sun suddenly exploded for, say, Reason X?

Within about eight minutes, I'd wager.

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12-04-2016, 01:18 AM (This post was last modified: 12-04-2016 01:23 AM by Erikjust.)
RE: Timeline for Earth after our sun begins to die?
(11-04-2016 04:09 PM)Deesse23 Wrote:  
Quote:I was under the misconception that the moment the sun burned through it´s fuel, it would start growing and it would the the closeness to the ever growing sun that would fry the Earth turning it into Mercury 2.0.

Well thats what you can see in every history channel-like documentary. Although its a bit of an (over)simplification, it isnt far from the truth.

We didnt monitor the universe long enough to have sufficient data on how stars evolve in such details, especially given the very violent nature of those objects, and i doubt our models are accurate enough or our computers have the power required to calculate such details.

What are the indicators of the sun starting its runaway red giant phase (or the preceding increase in energy output)?
  • helium lines in the sprectrum becoming more and more prominent
  • surface temperature rising
  • observable change in size

Another pretty easy (and practical!) indicator would be the irradiance at the top of the atmosphere or down here. It is particularly useful, since it is the key indicator for earths climate to undeniably change into a runaway greenhouse.
At the moment we have (out of my memory) ca. 1400W/m^2 on top of the atmosphere and 700 (800?) below. If we would monitor this for a longer time and filter etc. then a trend should be fairly easy to identify. Climate models on the other hand should give us a good idea where the threshold should be at which point Earth will turn into a greenhouse and then a desert.

From what i can gather it´s that timescale from when the sun starts to cook the earth till it´s more or less a desert, that we lack any precise data on to truly calculate the timescale.
But i gather we are talking several generations from start (when the sun starts to cook the earth) to finish (when the Earth becomes a dessert), before we reach the point of no return and the surface of the Earth simply becomes too hot for any life to live on it?

Most of my knowledge on the subject is from as you said history channel-like documentary on the subject and they don´t always really talk about the individual times scales on the different things that will happens once the sun runs out of fuel.
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12-04-2016, 01:31 AM
Timeline for Earth after our sun begins to die?
By the time all this happens the technology will exist to move the entire Earth to a different orbit around the sun basically going wherever it needs to stay in the sweet spot.

On a side note, you should have yourself frozen with instructions to thaw you out a day or so before the end. That way you can see it yourself.
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12-04-2016, 01:41 AM
RE: Timeline for Earth after our sun begins to die?
I think its pretty safe to say that this will happen on a somewhat larger time scale. While events on the sun will take very long to build up in general, the climate of earth is more sensitive to changes in irradiation, yet, huge polar caps or huge amounts of (global) water to be heated/cooled will delay any effects again. So it will take several years, or several decades until we have severe effects like total change of climate, noticeable evaporation of oceans etc.

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12-04-2016, 11:50 AM
RE: Timeline for Earth after our sun begins to die?
Well, it can't be for at least 1000 years after Jeebus returns and tries a third time to make the world what god couldn't do. Twice.

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12-04-2016, 12:25 PM
Timeline for Earth after our sun begins to die?
Interesting article on moving the Earth.
https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn1...val-guide/
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12-04-2016, 03:55 PM
RE: Timeline for Earth after our sun begins to die?
After reading that time line I could use a drink.

Don't Live each day like it's your last. Live each day like you have 541 days after that one where every choice you make will have lasting implications to you and the world around you. ~ Tim Minchin
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15-04-2016, 12:42 PM
Timeline for Earth after our sun begins to die?
There was a Horizon episode on this exact topic just the other day. Keep your eyes peeled for it on the BBC.


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15-04-2016, 10:35 PM (This post was last modified: 15-04-2016 10:43 PM by EvolutionKills.)
RE: Timeline for Earth after our sun begins to die?
(11-04-2016 05:13 AM)Erikjust Wrote:  I am looking for a more precise timeline of what happens when the sun burns out the last of its fuel.
What would any person on the planet see?
Would the sun start to get brighter and what of the heat how fast would it rise.
Are we talking 50 years after the sun burns through it´s fuel the polar icecaps melt and then in a 100 years it will be too hot for any life on the surface.

Or just what kind of timeline are we talking about and what kind of weather changes (if any) would we start to see on Earth?


It is time on a cosmic scale, so you're looking at billions of years, with margins of error in the millions of years. Nothing that can be easily quantifiable into a human lifespan. Plus, nobody on Earth would see anything as the sun burned the last of it's fuel, as half of the solar system (including Earth) would have already been destroyed by the prior red giant phase.

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15-04-2016, 11:51 PM
RE: Timeline for Earth after our sun begins to die?
(15-04-2016 10:35 PM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  It is time on a cosmic scale, so you're looking at billions of years, with margins of error in the millions of years. Nothing that can be easily quantifiable into a human lifespan. Plus, nobody on Earth would see anything as the sun burned the last of it's fuel, as half of the solar system (including Earth) would have already been destroyed by the prior red giant phase.

Unless i have once again miss understood the science our sun is currently using Hydrogen as fuel and as long as it has Hydrogen we´re fine.
When it runs out of it, that´s when it will slowly start to cook the earth and slowly start to increase in size.

But life on the surface of the earth will be long gone by the time it starts growing.
It´s that particular timeline i´m interested in from when the sun runs out of Hydrogen and starts heating up The Earth til there´s no more advanced life on planet Earth.
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