7 September 2011

Timeline of the far future

Some selected items from Wikipedia’s Timeline of the far future:

Years from nowEvent
50,000 Niagara Falls erodes away the remaining 20 miles to Lake Erie and ceases to exist.
500,000 By this point Earth will have likely been impacted by a meteorite of roughly 1 km in diameter.
10 million The widening East African Rift valley is flooded by the Red Sea, causing a new ocean basin to divide the continent of Africa.
50 million Africa will have collided with Eurasia, closing the Mediterranean Basin and creating a mountain range similar to the Himalayas.
100 million By this time, the Earth will have likely been impacted by a meteorite comparable in size to that which triggered the K–T extinction 65 million years ago.
250 million All the continents on Earth fuse into a new supercontinent.
1 billion The Sun’s increasing luminosity renders life on Earth’s surface impossible.
5.4 billion The Sun becomes a red giant. During these times, it is possible that Saturn’s moon Titan could achieve surface temperatures necessary to support life.
1012–1014 (1–100 trillion) Estimated time until star formation ends in galaxies as galaxies are depleted of the gas clouds they need to form stars. This marks the transition from the Stelliferous Era to the Degenerate Era.
3×1034 The estimated time for all nucleons in the observable Universe to decay, if protons decay and their half-life takes its smallest possible value.
101200 High estimate for the time for the Universe to reach its final energy state, the so-called “heat death of the universe”.

Sometimes it helps to get some perspective. See the big picture.

If only it wasn’t so damn depressing.