Diameter of observable universe is 93b light years
Diameter of observable universe is 93b light years

But don’t let it go to your head. So is everybody else. Really.

But it’s a big place, and getting bigger. “The” Universe is wider across, in fact, than twice distance light has traveled since the Big Bang.

I’d seen those figures of the distance to the “edge of the universe” and did a brain tilt. How can that be? The math didn’t make sense. (But this is cosmology, after all.)

See for yourself. But remember, this is only dealing with the “observable” universe. Ours may be one of an infinity of universes–multiverses. I’m not making this up!

Click the image above for the video while I continue to fail to make a simple youtube url display properly on the blog page. Keeps an old dog humble, as this it not particularly a NEW trick.

Here are a few other posts on the topic, more or less, from Fragments Outer Space Department. I tend to find myself thinking about the Bigger Picture every year, during the shortest days that herald a new year!

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Published by fred

Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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2 Comments

  1. Try calculating the volume if that sphere and then compare it to the volume of anything a single person knows a lot about. Makes a serious case for homo-humility.

  2. Exactly why this kind of fact-consideration comes along just now. Putting the notion of the human “here” and “now” into cosmic scale should make us humble even as it makes us marvel that our pink pudding of a brain could be a part of that universe–living matter capable of knowing itself. Fancy that!

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