Interstellar distance

Forums General Discussion How tall is a giraffe? Interstellar distance

Peter Mulligan

I once used a scale to try to visualise interstellar distances, at least out to the Proxima  Alpha Cen system. I would represent the Solar system as a sixteenth of an inch dot and call that 10,000,000,000 miles diameter, that’s out into the  Kuiper belt.  Of course we know the Solar system is vaster than this, this is just a rough estimate.  The nearest star on this scale would be thirteen feet away, The Voyager spacecraft have just come off the sixteenth inch dot.  I haven’t worked out how many tall Giraffes would fill the interstellar void, I don’t think I’ll bother!