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Stars and the Universe

Stars  -  Galaxies  -  The Universe.

Millions of stars attract each other to form spiral shapes in space.
These spirals are almost flat with a bulge in the centre.
The spirals are called galaxies.
Many of the stars in a galaxy will have their own planets
and form their own solar systems.
All of the evidence which we have about galaxies and stars
a long way away comes from telescopes pointing out into space
and collecting the electromagnetic waves
which distant objects emit (give out).

The Sun is part of a galaxy called the Milky Way.
The distances between the Sun and the planets are large
but the distance between stars in the same galaxy
may be millions of times as big.
The nearest star to the Sun is over four light years away.
The diameter of the Milky Way is 100,000 light years.

There are thousands of millions of galaxies in the Universe
(maybe many more).
The distance between galaxies may be millions of times as great
as the distance between stars of the same galaxy.
The nearest galaxy to the Milky Way is 2 million light years away.
This means that when you look at this galaxy
you are seeing it as it was 2 million years ago
because that is how long the light took to get here!

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