Years after our star’s fusion has faded away and it would have cooled down, the Sun would become a solid crystal after its death, joining the billion of such space bodies, scattered all over the Universe. In a recent study, the scientists found out that also the white dwarfs, such as the Sun, solidify into metallic crystals. The research is of great significance to science since it might help astronomers measure the age of the oldest bodies in the Universe more accurately.
“This is the first direct evidence that white dwarfs crystallize, or transition from liquid to solid,” said physicist Pier-Emmanuel Tremblay from the University of Warwick.
The researchers from the UK, Canada, and the US gathered data from the European Space Agency’s Gaia satellite and discovered the evidence that white dwarfs would also become solid crystals after their death.
The Sun Would Become A Solid Crystal After Its Death
“It was predicted fifty years ago that we should observe a pile-up in the number of white dwarfs at certain luminosities and colors due to crystallization, and only now this has been observed,” physicist Pier-Emmanuel Tremblay added.
Massive stars in the Universe die out with a great explosion that we call Supernova. The majority of the stars in the Universe, like the Sun, are moderate in size and they fade away silently.
“All white dwarfs [like our Sun] will crystallize at some point in their evolution, although more massive white dwarfs go through the process sooner. That means that billions of white dwarfs in our galaxy have already completed the process and are essentially crystal spheres in the sky. We believe this is due to the oxygen crystallizing first and then sinking to the core, a process similar to sedimentation on a river bed on Earth,” added Pier-Emmanuel Tremblay from the University of Warwick.