We are living on a tiny life-bearing rock, an oasis, in a large, very large, and hostile desert called “Universe“. The universe is big, really big, in fact, even our solar system is shockingly large compared to Earth. But again, our brains have problems dealing with big numbers and large objects. Jacqui Frank of Business Insider has prepared a video titled “Earth to Scale”, comparing our planet with large astronomical objects (and distances) in the Universe. These amazing to-scale visuals will help to recognize how small (and fragile) our planet is.

Earth to scale: It’s easy to forget how small our Earth is within the known universe. These to-scale visuals will help to keep that in perspective.

Earth to scale

Some excerpts from the video:

As a person living on Earth, our planet feels pretty big. But, if you start to think about space and beyond, it will start to seem very small.

  1. The distance between the Earth and the Moon (384,400 km / 238,855 miles) can obtain about 30 Earths (the diameter of Earth is 12,742 km / 7,917.5 miles).
  2. From the surface of Mars, the Earth is only a tiny dot.
  3. Jupiter’s giant red spot (a huge storm) would completely swallow North America.
  4. 6 Earths could fit across Saturn’s rings.
  5. Despite being an average-sized star, the Sun is so large that 1.3 million Earths would fit inside of it. ACtually, 99.86% of the mass of our solar system is made up by the Sun.
Earth to scale: Planets and the sun - size comparison
Earth to scale: Planets and the sun – size comparison. Sun’s Equatorial radius is 696,342±65 km, which is 109 times bigger than Earth’s. This means 1093 = 1,295,029 (almost 1.3 million) Earths could fit inside the Sun. Photo: sizemattersscience.wordpress.com
  • Our Sun is only one of 100-200 billion stars in our galaxy, the Milky Way. We can see only see around 4,000 of these stars in the sky.
  • Our galaxy is in a supercluster of galaxies called “Laniakea”, which is home to our galaxy the Milky Way, and 100,000 other nearby galaxies, stretched out over 160 megaparsecs (520 million light-years).


M. Özgür Nevres

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