It took 200 years for scientists to figure out why it gets dark at night

It took 200 years for scientists to figure out why it gets dark at night

CultureOctober 21, 2016 By Ethan Desmond

It seems pretty simple, when the sun goes down at the end of the day, it get's dark because we cant see that giant ball of fire at the center of our solar system. Yet, we know space is filled with tons of random stuff, and a incredible amount of stars, so why isn't every inch of the night sky filled with the light of other massive balls of gas? 

There are some two trillion galaxies in our universe, a number that went up ten times just this month when scientists learned that the observable universe was not only older, but much larger than we originally thought. Galaxies are like neighborhoods for stars, each one of the two trillion galaxies is home to, on average, 100 million stars — each just as bright (if not brighter) than our own sun.

Modern scientists thought they had an answer, they believed there were only 100 billion galaxies in the universe, which was small enough to keep our night sky dark. But the new findings show the universe is bright enough to completely light up the sky.

So the real answer? It isn't due to light pollution, but the oldest and most abundant known element in the existence of our universe: Hydrogen gas.

Hydrogen gas is found in every corner of the universe, without it there wouldn't be stars, and without stars there wouldn't be anything else in the universe. The gas is great at obstructing light and keeping it from reaching us. 

This idea isn't anything new to science either, 200 years ago German astronomer Heinrich Olbers came came up with the "dark sky paradox" that contemplated the infinite amount of stars in our universe and why the hell we can't see them at night when the sky is clear. His question remained relevant up to modern day.

Unfortunately for Olbers, he didn't have the technology to prove his theory right, but scientists showed once again that if we can know anything for certain, it's that we can't be certain about anything