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Animation comparing Earth to the largest known star in the universe is mind-blowing

Animation comparing Earth to the largest known star in the universe is mind-blowing

This wild video really puts things into perspective.

The sheer scale of space can be totally mind-boggling, as demonstrated by a wild new Reddit video comparing our home planet to what might be the biggest star in the universe.

The star is called Stephenson 2 DFK 1, a less than dramatic name for what's commonly called a red supergiant star. It might well be the biggest we've ever detected, and one that makes our own Sun look like a tiny little thing.

It's so big that there's debate over whether it should be classed as an extreme red hypergiant instead, a label that gets a little closer to indicating just how massive it is.

A video went viral on the subreddit Damnthatsinteresting this week comparing our planet Earth to this huge star, and it is seriously jaw-dropping.

The video starts with a 3D model of Earth on a backdrop of what looks like orange spikes, but as it zooms out you start to realise that these are just the surface irregularities of the star that lurks behind our planet.

The video starts to zoom out, and by around 15 seconds in you can no longer even see Earth - it's become a tiny pinprick against that orange background, which takes up the entire screen.

In fact, it takes 30 seconds before we can even glimpse the edge of the star, zooming out steadily the whole time, so huge is its diameter, with those surface irregularities looking incredibly smooth at such a distance.

As it pans out even further, you can even see a couple of massive sunspots which, given how Earth disappeared, would themselves completely dwarf our home planet entirely, which really puts the size of the star into scale.


Unsurprisingly, this has really spaced people out in the comments, with one popular response to the Reddit post reading: "Really makes the everyday, major concerns feel totally insignificant down here."

Another commenter said: "Even this video does not do that thing justice. I ran some numbers. It is so huge that if [our] Sun were replaced by this star, it would engulf all planets until Saturn."

Stephenson 2 DFK 1's home cluster was first discovered in 1990 and is around 19,000 light years away from us, and its radius is thought to be an astounding 930,000,000 miles. That said, it's possible that there are some potential inaccuracies that could be figured out as our technology gets more precise - and who knows, there's probably an even bigger star out there, yet to be discovered.

Featured Image Credit: boingggoesmyschlong/Reddit