The Centaur | StarDate On-line
Centaurus is dwelling to among the evening sky’s nice treasures, together with our closest neighbor stars and the Milky Manner’s largest globular cluster. But most of us in the USA don’t get to see them. They’re to this point south that they all the time keep under the horizon.
Centaurus represents a centaur — a mythological creature that was half man, half horse. In accordance with some variations of the story, he was Chiron — the wisest of all of the centaurs. He tutored Hercules, Perseus, and plenty of different younger heroes in music, medication, and different arts. However Hercules by accident shot Chiron with a poisoned arrow. Chiron was immortal, so he suffered in agony. Zeus ultimately allowed him to die — then positioned him within the stars.
The centaur’s biggest treasure is Alpha Centauri — a system of three stars. They’re the closest stars past the Solar. The closest of the three is Proxima Centauri, simply 4 and 1 / 4 light-years away. It’s too faint to see with no telescope. However the different two stars, that are a contact farther, are shiny. You have to be in Hawaii or within the southern suggestions of Texas or Florida to see them.
Centaurus is also dwelling to Omega Centauri — a cluster of a number of million stars. It’s shiny sufficient to see with the attention alone. Proper now, it’s simply above the southern horizon as evening falls throughout the southern third of the nation, and appears like a fuzzy star.
We’ll have extra concerning the centaur tomorrow.
Right now’s program was made potential by Mercer Caverns, in Calaveras County in California’s historic Gold Nation.