The Reason The Sun Will Eventually Turn Into Crystal, According To Science

Set an alarm on your phone and plan to take a personal day, because in about 10 billion years, the Sun is going to turn into a crystal big enough to make a strip mall new age spiritualist think "maybe that's a little much." And why will this occur? For the same reason that everybody's great aunts get really into crystals. It just happens with age.

According to researchers at the University of Warwick, a decades-old theory about the end of life plans of some types of stars has finally been catalogued and proven. The idea was that stars, specifically stars of the size and makeup necessary to transform into white dwarfs in their twilight years, would begin to transform as they cooled down. The process of running out of hydrogen for fusion would leave them with one of two options: they'd either remain liquid but change color due to the shift in temperature, or solidify, remaining the same shade but rocking a new look as an 18 million degree recreation of the Fortress of Solitude.

Living in a world without Sun

According to Smithsonian, scientists hadn't observed the sort of color shift that would indicate that the "remain liquid" hypothesis held sway, but they didn't have the evidence necessary to support the crystallization theory until early 2019. That was when the European Space Agency's Gaia telescope observed that many white dwarfs stop what was assumed to be their natural life cycle and instead started releasing energy in a manner indicative of crystallizing. 

And since our Sun is expected to become a white dwarf in a few billion years, that means we'll all have a very kitschy knick knack memorializing where the Earth got vaporized to look forward to seeing down the road. It'll make for a hell of a prism if we can just find another sun to shine light through it.

Nuclear fusion remains one of science's toughest and potentially tastiest eggs to crack. Though humans have technically achieved fusion for a split-second via a split atom, it was nowhere close to being sustainable. If we can find a reliable source of fusion energy, we'll literally be on another level of existence, according to the Kardashev scale The most likely scenario for leveling up humanity is harnessing star power, kind of like in Guitar Hero, but more literally. If we can harness the full energy of a star, we'll be well on our way to all the things science fiction writers dream of.