July 14, 2024
1 Solar System Way, Planet Earth, USA
Astronomy

What are the chances of dark matter or a black hole tearing the Earth apart?

What are the chances of dark matter or a black hole tearing the Earth apart?

Antonio Rico
Lexington, Kentucky

Our planet is safe from being torn apart by a black hole or dark matter. The gravity between objects in our solar system exceeds the gravity of the Milky Way's dark matter, so this mysterious mass is ruled out.

As for black holes, scientists don't know of any near us, and they would have to pass extremely close to our planet to affect Earth. Our Sun does not have enough material In order to become a black hole, it would have to be about 20 times more massive to become a black hole at the end of its life. So we don't have to worry about a black hole tearing our planet apart either.

Related: How will the Sun die?

Liz Kruesi
Associate Editor

Editor's note: This article was first published as an audio file in 2011. It has been transcribed and republished.

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