Scope on the Skies: End of the line for a star like ours

by: Bob Riddle

Stars of different masses have varying life spans, with the more massive stars “burning out” more quickly than stars of lower masses. How or what they do when they burn out also varies, depending on the mass of the star. All stars are called main sequence stars as they continue fusing hydrogen and staying in a state of equilibrium—a balance between gravity and thermal pressure. However, when stars stop fusing hydrogen, they undergo changes that will lead to their eventual death. Once again, a star’s mass determines how long it will last.


Type Journal ArticlePub Date 2/1/2010Stock # ss10_033_06_70Volume 033Issue 06

NSTA Press produces classroom-ready activities, hands-on approaches to inquiry, relevant professional development, the latest scientific education news and research, assessment and standards-based instruction.

Learn More