Moons page — updated on December 6th, 2018

Nebulae page — updated on August 28th, 2017

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


A spectacular and famous site viewed in the Southern Hemisphere - in places like Australia, most of Indonesia, New Zealand, Southern Africa, and most of South America - CENTAURUS the Centaur is located to the east of the constellations Circinus (the Compass) and Lupus (the Wolf), north of the small yet famous Crux (the Cross), and south of the western part of Hydra (the Sea Serpent). Centaurus is home to Omega Centauri, a globular star cluster that is very well-known amongst astronomers. There are also many open star clusters, which have less of a star density than globular clusters like Omega Centauri. Nonetheless, they are still beautiful to see in telescopes and binoculars. There are also amazing galaxies, particularly Centaurus A (NGC 5128). The brightest star (α) is Rigil Kent (also called Rigil/Rigel Kentaurus) with a magnitude of -0.27. The second brightest star (β) is Hadar with a magnitude of 0.61. Remember, stars with low-number magnitudes (especially if their magnitudes are negative numbers) are the brightest.

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Blog Background

The background has three Hubble Space Telescope images, which are accessible at this Hubble webpage:

— LH 95 is a star-forming region in the Large Magellanic Cloud, Dorado constellation.

— Ant Nebula (also called Menzel 3) is an aptly-named planetary nebula located in the constellation Norma.
— Egg Nebula (also called CL 2688) is a protoplanetary nebula in the constellation Cygnus.

HubbleSite Image Links: LH 95, Ant Nebula, and Egg Nebula