Astronomy

Epsilon Boötis – Star Facts

- 24 January 2020

Epsilon Bootis

Epsilon Boötiis is also known as Izar from the Arabic word meaning ‘veil’ and Pulcherrima which is Latin for ‘the loveliest’. In 1973 a Scottish astronomer and science fiction writer, Duncan Lunan, said he interpreted a message from the 1920s probe orbiting the Moon. He claimed the message was sent to the probe from the inhabitants of a planet orbiting Epsilon Bootis.

Denebola – Star Facts

- 15 January 2020

Denebola

Denebola is from the Arabic language meaning, ‘the lion’s tail’, which is in the constellation of Leo. In the Ancient Chinese culture, their astronomers gave Denebola the first star designation in the five-star asterism ‘Seat of the Five Emperors’. In astrology, Denebola was believed to bring misfortune and disgrace. It’s also 15 times brighter than the Sun.

Deneb – Star Facts

- 8 January 2020

Deneb

Deneb is from the Latin language meaning ‘tail’, and is one of the largest white stars known today. It is also called Alpha Cygni and is a blue-white supergiant with 20 solar masses and 200 times the radius of the Sun. After a few million years Deneb’s core will collapse producing a supernova. In Chinese mythology Deneb is the bridge of magpies a Princess crosses.

Castor – Star Facts

- 23 December 2019

Castor

Castor is from the Latin language meaning ‘beaver’. Castor is actually made up of six stars with three pairs of binary stars being all gravitationally bound to each other. The mythology surrounding Castor dates back to the early Greeks. They believed that Castor and his brother, Pollux were ‘half’ twins. The boys were also alleged to have sailed with Jason and the Argonauts.

Capella – Star Facts

- 16 December 2019

Capella

Capella is a four-star system made up of two pairs of binary stars. Historically and mythologically, Capella is a bit of a mystery. Richard Hinkley Allen from Star Names tells us the ancient Arabs referred to Capella as ‘the Driver’ or a shepherd driving his flock of sheep across the night sky with the nearby Pleiades being construed as large animals.

Canopus – Star Facts

- 9 December 2019

Canopus

Canopus is suspected to be nearing the end of its life cycle even though it is considerable young. Its mass is 65 times that of the Sun and shines with the luminosity of 14,000 suns. In fact, this star is so large if it were placed in the middle of the solar system it would reach 90 percent of the way to Mercur.

Betelgeuse – Star Facts

- 4 December 2019

Betelgeuse

Betelgeuse is also known as Alpha Orionis and 58 Orionis and marks the center of the Winter Hexagon. It is also one of the stars that makes up the Winter Triangle. Betelgeuse is a 10 million year-old red supergiant star and one of the largest stars known today. It’s predicted to collapse under its own weight ending in a supernova explosion.

Beta Ursae Majoris – Star Facts

- 26 November 2019

Beta Ursae Majoris

Beta Ursae Majoris makes up part of ‘the Big Dipper’ and is 10 million years-old. This star is one of the hottest and has 3.4 times the radius of the Sun and is 50 times more luminous. It’s also known as Alkaid and Benetnash from the Arabic meaning ‘the leaders of the daughters of the bier’.

Beta Tauri – Star Facts

- 21 November 2019

Beta Tauri

Beta Tauri has the traditional name of Elnath which is derived from Arabic (al-nath) meaning ‘butting’ and is in reference to the bull’s horns of the Taurus constellation. When searching for Elnath, look for the ‘V’ shape of Taurus the Bull. Once you have located this pattern, Beta Tauri is the Northernmost star representing the bull’s left horn.