6 Nisan 2008 Pazar


Antares is a star in the Milky Way galaxy and the sixteenth brightest star in the nighttime sky (sometimes listed as fifteenth brightest, if the two brighter components of the Capella quadruple star system are counted as one star). Along with Aldebaran, Spica, and Regulus it is one of the four brightest stars near the ecliptic. The similarly colored Aldebaran lies almost directly opposite Antares in the Zodiac.

Antares is a class M supergiant star, with a diameter of approximately 700 times that of the sun; if it were placed in the centre of our solar system, its outer surface would lie between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. Antares is approximately 600 light years from our solar system. Its visual luminosity is about 10,000 times that of the Sun, but because the star radiates a considerable part of its energy in the infrared part of the spectrum, the bolometric luminosity equals roughly 65,000 times that of the Sun. The mass of the star is calculated to be 15 to 18 solar masses. Its large size and relatively small mass give Antares a very low average density.

The best time to view Antares is on or around May 31 of each year, when the star is at "opposition" to the Sun. At this time, Antares rises at dusk and sets at dawn, and is thus in view all night (depending on your position on Earth). For approximately two to three weeks on either side of November 30, Antares is not visible at all, being lost in the Sun's glare; this period of invisibility is longer in the Northern Hemisphere than in the Southern Hemisphere, since the star's declination is significantly south of the celestial equator.

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