Some terrifying but logical ways the world could actually end
The Earth is the only known source of life in the universe. This pale blue dot which we call home provides sanctuary to a myriad number of life forms. But will life on Earth remain forever? Or will we be hit by an asteroid/rogue planet? Or get engulfed by a black hole? Here are some terrifying but logical ways the world could actually end.
Gamma ray bursts could shred our atmosphere
When gigantic stars collapse, they emit gamma ray bursts (GRBs). They are very powerful and a small blast emits more energy than our Sun will throughout its life. Around 440 million years ago, a GRB pointed toward our planet caused a mass extinction. GRBs can wipe out the ozone layer, cause global cooling at a rapid pace, and bathe the planet in ultraviolet radiation.
An asteroid impact will boil us to death
Rocks from space can prove to be very destructive, and one such asteroid wiped out all life on Earth including dinosaurs 66 million years ago. Huge asteroids are expected to hit Earth every 100 million years, and will certainly boil the surface and the oceans. Temperatures might reach over 480 degree Celsius, and all large lifeforms including us will most certainly be exterminated.
We might die due to lack of oxygen
Around 2.5 billion years ago, the Great Oxidation Event took place on Earth and created a breathable atmosphere. However, during the Late Ordovician mass extinction 450 million years ago, the oxygen content dropped dramatically and life was snuffed out. Another deoxygenation event might be on the way as climate change is lowering the oxygen content in oceans. All marine life might be destroyed.
The Earth's core may cool down
As the Earth rotates, its core creates a huge electric dynamo, which in turn generates a protective magnetic shield called the magnetosphere. It surrounds the planet and deflects high-energy particles like flares from the Sun. However, when the planet's core will cool down, we will lose our magnetosphere and the solar winds will scorch the surface. Mars suffered a similar fate.
The Earth might get removed from its orbit
Many planets drift away from their star systems at the time of formation. They are called rogue planets. One of them might enter our solar system and shift our planet into an inhospitable orbit. Earth might even collide with its neighbors like Mercury and Venus. If Earth becomes a rogue planet, it might witness immense temperature fluctuations ranging from extremely hot to biting cold.