The Physics Factbook
Edited by Glenn Elert -- Written by his students
An educational, Fair Use website
|Loble-Murray-Rice. Earth Science. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Pretice-Hall, 1986.||"Temperatures in the photosphere usually do not exceed 6,000 °C"||6,000 °C|
|World Book Encyclopedia Vol. 18. New York: World Book, 1996.||"The sun's surface or photosphere is about 340 miles thick and its temperature about 5,500 °C"||5,500 °C|
|Davis, Dan & Anny Levasseur-Regourd. Our Sun. New York: BLA, 1989.||"The Solar surface is not solid like the earth's, but its high temperature 5,700 °C …."||5,700 °C|
|Principles Of Science. Columbus, OH: Merrill, 1979.||"… temperature of the sun is about 6,000 °C"||6,000 °C|
|Dichristina, Mariett. "Our Violent Star." Popular Science. 249, 3 (September 1996): 17.||"… while the sun's surface (photosphere) is 5,600 °C"||5,600 °C|
The sun is 4.6 billion years old. It is largely composed of hydrogen and helium. The sun is about 110 times bigger than the earth. It has many layers. The surface of the sun is called the photosphere. Its density is from one-millionth, to one ten millionth as dense as water. The photosphere gives off the sun's energy in forms of heat and light. Most of the sunlight we see is from its pebbly surface. The photosphere is 340 miles thick and it's temperature s range from 5,500 °C to 6,000 °C. It has dark spots called sunspots which are the only solar activity observable by the naked eye.
Above the photosphere the temperature is about 4,000 °C above that, the temperature rises to 27,800 °C. The region consists of hot gases in violent motion and is called the chromosphere. It displays fountains of flaming gases. The next layer below the photosphere is the convection zone. It is 60,000 miles thick and it's temperature can reach 2 million °C. The radiation zone is directly below the convection zone. Energy from the core rebounds for centuries before surfacing, and it is 300,000 miles thick with a temperature at up to 6.5 million °C. The core of the sun is under 200 billion times the pressure of the earth's surface. It is 60,000 miles thick and has a temperature that does not exceed 15 million °C. It's so hot that hydrogen is fused into helium.
Glynise Finney -- 1997
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