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This mesmerizing video shows how incredibly vast space really is

Light travels at about 186,000 miles per second. That's an incomprehensibly fast speed — faster than any other object in the universe.

But the video above shows how huge just our corner of the galaxy is, even for a photon of light traveling at that remarkable speed. The film, by artist Alphonse Swinehart, gives you the view you'd see if you were a particle of light traveling from the sun across the solar system — even though it's 45 minutes long, you still don't even reach Saturn.

This video is a striking reminder that even though we grow up looking at diagrams of the solar system with the planets neatly packed together, it's actually almost entirely made up of empty space. The distance between our planet and the others is many times larger than we can wrap our heads around — and the planets themselves are small enough to fit in the gap between Earth and the moon.


What's more, the distance to any other star is many times greater still. By analogy, if you put Earth at home plate in a baseball stadium and the sun on the pitcher's mound, the next-closest star would be about 3,072 miles away.

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