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Name: Brian
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Date: 1993 - 1999

Why is the sun its color?

Wonderful question, Brian. Have you had a course in chemistry yet? That would help answer some of your questions. Meanwhile, go find an electric stove and turn one of the burners on "high". Why does the burner glow red? What does your encyclopedia say about "spectra"? Some "why" questions can take a whole lifetime to answer.

J Lu

Stars have different colors according to their surface temperatures. Cooler stars are red to orange; hotter stars are blue to white. The Sun's surface temp is 5770 deg. Kelvin which is why it's its color. You may have heard about temperatures in the millions of degrees associated with the Sun. This would have been in reference to the solar corona, a blanket of hot ionized gas extending up to around 100,000 km above the Sun's surface. The corona is normally visible only during total solar eclipses. Why the corona is so hot is a mystery that solar physicists are working to solve.


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