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Answers to questions from 3rd class in Ballybrown NS

Here are the answers:

Can stars be the same size as planets?
Currently the smallest star we have found is called OGLE-TR-122b. This star is around 96 times more massive than Jupiter. We call this type of star a red dwarf
                               But also………………….
When a very large star runs out of fuel, the core stops reacting and the force holding the star up ceases, causing it to collapse. As all this material comes crashing down, the core of the star gets compressed. If the star is large enough then the core gets compressed until even the atoms inside are squashed together. This leaves a huge ball of neutrons. This material forms some of the densest material we know of. These compressed cores can contain as much as twice the material in our sun, squashed down to less than 20 kilometres (12.4 miles) across.
Astronomers are constantly making new discoveries in our universe and those, of course, include finding bigger and bigger stars.
Our own star, the Sun, has a diameter of about 1,392,000 km or 865,000 miles, and to better compare it to other stars, astronomers use the measurement of 1 solar unit to refer to it. So, 1 solar unit = 865,000 miles, or the size of the Sun.
Is the North Star the second biggest star?
The North Star is 6 times the radius of the sun.
VV Cephei A is the second largest.  It has a radius of between 1,600 and 1,900 solar units. This massive star is known as an eclipsing binary star system also called HD 208816 and it is actually two stars.
VY Canis Majoris is the largest star in our known universe with a solar radius of 1,800 – 2,100 (about 1,800 – 2,100 solar units or that many times as large as the Sun itself). Canis Majoris is a red hypergiant class star located in the Canis Major constellation and lies about 4,900 light years away from Earth.
How many stars are in space?
We think that there are about 200 billion stars in our galaxy, the Milky Way. There are billions of other galaxies, too. So the total number of stars in space is HUGE!!!! Of course you can’t see them all. Most of them are too faint to see except through a big telescope.
How many moons are there? ( in the solar system )
Mercury and Venus-0.
164 moons orbiting all the planets in the solar system.  Jupiter has most moons with 63
Ps If you include moons that orbit dwarf planets, Trans-Neptunian Objects, Trojan moons, and asteroids the number would jump to 336 classified moons
How long does it take Saturn to orbit the sun?
Astronomers call the length of time an object takes to go around the Sun its orbital period. So the orbital period of Saturn is 29.45 years.
(Saturn itself travels at 230 km/s or 828,000 kph)
How long would it take to travel to Saturn?
Depends upon technology. At the moment it may take between 2-4 years.
When is the next eclipse?
Next eclipse will be on the 18th-19th oct.
Here is a really cool link to a website with all useful eclipse dates:
Describe the software you used to create the special effects?
Exploration Dome uses Nightshade software.
Use this link to get this software for free to use in class.
Tell us more about the one way trip to mars?
Here is the link the website from which I got my information:
What’s the function of the rings around Saturn? do they contain rock particles?
The rings around a planet have no function – they are the result of debris in orbit around the planet.
Saturn’s rings are mostly water ice objects, ranging in size from dust specks to the size of a small car.
What is the functions of the other planets?
The planets don’t really have a function other than just being there.
Universal law, ie gravity,motion,mass is the reason why the planets are where the are.
why can we not land on mars at present?
There are some pretty serious gaps in our abilities, including the fact that we can’t properly store the necessary fuel long enough for a Mars trip, we don’t yet have a vehicle capable of landing people on the Martian surface, and we aren’t entirely sure what it will take to keep them alive once there.
We are getting close though.
How many teeth has a great white shark?
Great whites have 48 – 50 frontal teeth at any one time; 22-24 along their top jaw, and 24-26 along their bottom jaw.
Just behind this row of teeth, they can have between 5 – 7 rows of teeth ready to move into the frontal position should the shark lose a tooth, which they do, every other day.
The number of rows grow all the time. As a tooth is lost at the front, so more grow right at the back, so that the shark is never toothless at the front.
So at any one time, a great white shark can have 350 teeth in its mouth, but over a lifetime will go through thousands of teeth.
How fast can a great white shark travel?
Typical cruising speed of a great white is only a few miles per hour. However, when they are feeding, and are going to strike at their prey, they have been known to hit speeds of 25-35 mph.