Daily Cosmobite : Sirius

The brightest star in the night sky award belongs to Sirius.  It rises around 8:40pm  and is part of the constellation Canis Major rising in the southeast in the night sky.  With an apparent magnitude of -1.46 it doubles the next brightest star in comparison called Canopus with an apparent magnitude of -.72. Sirius is nicknamed the Dog Star which means “Glowing” in Greek. ‘Sirius’ is also the name given to ‘Sirius Black’ in the book Harry Potter, and his character is very mysterious.

This post is by Sydney Observatory astronomy guide, Paul Clemens. You can meet Paul on day or night tours and he is often working at the Powerhouse Museum on the Mars Lab program.

Credit: NASA, H.E. Bond and E. Nelan (Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore, Md.); M. Barstow and M. Burleigh (University of Leicester, U.K.); and J.B. Holberg (University of Arizona)

2 responses to “Daily Cosmobite : Sirius

  • Hello,
    in case you ever publish this picture again, it might be good to include the full NASA description, pointing out the fact that Sirius B is visible in the lower left – I gather this is not often seen by casual astro observers.
    From NASA: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sirius:
    “The image of Sirius A and Sirius B taken by the Hubble Space Telescope. The white dwarf can be seen to the lower left.[82] The diffraction spikes and concentric rings are instrumental effects.”

    Best regards,

    • > Thank you Astrolote, It is indeed Sirius B down to the left, sometimes called the “Pup”. It is very difficult to see, being so faint in comparison to Sirius A, although a few of our expert Astronomy Guides here at Sydney Observatory have reported successful observations!

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