Two things would happen if the sun somehow
stopped producing light and heat all of a sudden.
First, the earth would begin to steadily cool
down without the heat of the sun warming it.
Within a few days the surface of the earth
would be below freezing. Large bodies of
water like the oceans cool down much slower
than land, so the oceans would remain warmer
for a time, but the surface of the ocean would
eventually freeze after several months, but
the water underneath the surface probably won’t
freeze for a very long time. At this point the
surface of the earth would be too cold for most
plants and animals to survive and there would
be no available liquid water to drink. After
the oceans freeze, the earth will continue to cool
for a thousand years or so until it reaches a
temperature of -400 degrees Fahrenheit, at which
point the atmosphere would be unstable and will
The second thing that would happen is that
photosynthesis would immediately stop
no longer be able to grow without the energy of
the sun. Most plants would die within a few
but some trees can slow down their metabolism in
winter and could survive for quite some time
without sunlight. Eventually, after several
decades of no sunlight, even large tress would
begin to die without photosynthesis. Since plants
are a major food source in the earth’s ecosystem,
most of the animals would die as soon as their
food source is gone. Scavengers would be the last
to survive since they survive on dead and decaying
organisms; howevermost life would perish within
the first year.
In the deep oceans, near some geothermal vents,
and insulated by the frozen layer of water at the
surface, some chemosynthetic bacteria and archaea
who never see much of the sun anyway and rely on
geothermal energy could continue to survive for
many 1000s of years without any problem, so
life-itself could last quite a while, but most of
the organisms that live on the surface of the
earth would not survive past one year.
Depends on what you mean by "out". If you were
to turn off nuclear fusion in the sun, it would
probably be about ten thousand years before
anybody on Earth would notice. This is
because the sun is very big, so it would take
time for it to cool off, and because the
reason why the sun is bright is because it is hot.
That heat comes from nuclear fusion, but the light
that we see is not from the core where the nuclear
reactions take place, but from the surface.
Even if the sun were to go out, however, there
are hot springs and other hydrothermal vents
created by volcanic activity that still provide
enough heat and chemical energy for some forms of
life to exist. Removing the sun would not
destroy these vents, even though the rest of the
Earth would freeze. These vents will probably
continue to exist for billions of years, as they
have existed for billions of years already.
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