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Supergiants and Supernovas

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Red Giants, White Dwarfs, Supergiants and Supernovas
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Red Giants

A main sequence star's "fuel" is its hydrogen. Once it uses up all its hydrogen it begins to fuse helium atoms into larger elements (like carbon). Once this occurs, what happens to the star's core?

How are the outer layers affected by the core as a result?

White Dwarfs

Even after it switches to helium, the star will run out of fuel. What now happens varies, depending on the stars mass. What happens to a star like our sun?



Think about it: What if our Sun was larger? Would it shrink and fade away? Would it explode?

Unlike a smaller star--like a red giant--a supergiant will continue fusion once all helium atoms have been used. Is more energy produce or used in this process?

However, even a supergiant cannot fuse atoms together forever. What happens to the core once it can no longer fuse atoms together?


A star explodes when it runs out of atoms to fuse. What is this called?

The explosion release large amounts of energy, fusing together heavy elements. Why are these explosions so important to us?


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