Physics: Fact and Fancy

This feature article is part one of two articles from Dr. Jerry Webb. Be on the lookout for part two next Wednesday on Saline River Chronicle.

Our solar system (the sun and eight planets) is part of the “Milky Way Galaxy.” Astronomers tell us there are billions of stars in the Milky Way Galaxy. The Milky Way is what is called a spiral arm galaxy. There are two spiral arms – one on each side. Our solar system is way out on the edge of one of the spiral arms, about as far from the center as you could get. This is probably a good thing – because some people think that there is a black hole at the center.

By Dr. Jerry Webb

Proffesor of Physics
UAM (Retired)
Ph.D., Nuclear Physics

When you look out into space on a clear night, some of the things you see are not other stars but actually other GALAXIES! Astronomers tell us that there are billions of other galaxies. So, there are billions of galaxies, each containing billions of stars. The people who study these things tell us that there is no chance of there not being other planets with life.

I read an article recently that said the star nearest our sun has an earthlike planet orbiting it. My first thought was: why don’t we just run over and take a look? This will be the subject of a future article.

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