With the launch of the Kepler telescope and observatory in 2009, scientists’ knowledge of our universe has taken a quantum leap forward in a little more than five years. Orbiting our own planet, Kepler’s mission is a simple one: Search for habitable planets elsewhere in the universe. This orbiting telescope is so powerful that it is capable of discovering more than 1,000 new planets at a time. This has led to a major advance in terms of our understanding of the universe, and it has resulted in some pretty incredible theories that were unthinkable just a few short years ago. With that in mind, here are some mindblowing recent discoveries of the universe that will seriously mess with your head.
10. There Are More Stars Than Grains Of Sand On Earth
American astronomer, cosmologist, and astrophysicist Carl Sagan long had a theory that there were more stars in the universe than grains of sand on the Earth, one he created long before we had the ability to discover if he was right. Now, if you’ve ever been to the ocean and looked out across a single white sandy beach, which contains a nearly uncountable number of grains of sand, you would probably find this theory impossible to believe. However, mathematicians at the Massachusetts Institute for Technology recently developed an equation which proves that Sagan’s theory is likely correct, because there are literally billions and billions of stars in the universe. Exactly how many is not known, and probably never will be, but by taking what we have seen thus far, and extrapolating outward, it is very likely that there are in fact more stars in space than the incredible number of tiny grains of sand on our own planet.