One day, our sun will solidify into a giant crystal orb

Earth's Sun Will Turn into a Pure Crystal Ball Before It Dies

But long after our planet has been ended, the sun will shrink to a cool white dwarf star and then slowly solidify into a massive white crystal, the study says.

"All white dwarfs will crystallize at some point in their evolution, although more massive white dwarfs go through the process sooner", Pier-Emmanuel Tremblay from the University of Warwick's Department of Physics in the United Kingdom explained in a statement.

About 50 years ago, scientists predicted that the gaseous cores of white dwarfs should crystallise and become solid with the cooling of the hot gases inside them.

Because the life cycles of white dwarfs are so well understood, astronomers are able to use them as a tool to estimate the age of nearby populations of stars.

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.

Tremblay said their studies suggested that white dwarfs stop their cooling by turning from liquid to almost 99 per cent solid over about 1.5 billion years.

The substances that make out the crystal spheres are oxygen and carbon which under such a high density make the stars look like metal.

They identified a pile-up, an excess in the number of stars at specific colours and luminosities that do not correspond to any single mass or age. Red dwarfs, the most common type of star, keep burning until they have transformed all their hydrogen into helium, turning into a white dwarf.

"Before Gaia we had 100-200 white dwarfs with precise distances and luminosities - and now we have 200,000", Tremblay said, giving the satellite the bulk of the credit for the research team's discovery.

The team selected 15,000 white dwarf candidates that were located within 300 light-years of Earth, and analyzed their brightness and colors. "It is assessed that now and again these stars have slowed down their aging by as much as 2 billion years, or 15 percent of the age of our cosmic system".

"All white dwarfs will crystallise at some point in their evolution, although more massive white dwarfs go through the process sooner".

The researchers analyzed a whopping 15,109 white dwarfs and mapped their luminosities and colors and saw a unusual group of data points sticking out.

Dr. Tremblay added that all white dwarfs will eventually crystallize, meaning that "billions of white dwarfs in our galaxy have already completed the process and are essentially crystal spheres in the sky. This will push the carbon upwards, and that separation will release gravitational energy".

The interior of a "crystal orb" white dwarf.

"It's exciting how scanning stars across the sky and measuring their properties can lead to evidence of plasma phenomena in matter so dense that cannot be tested in the laboratory".

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