In today’s article, we’re discussing Circinus Constellation facts to help you identify, locate, and understand it.
Circinus Constellation Facts, Myth, Location and Stars
What is the Circinus Constellation?
The Circinus Constellation is one of the 88 constellations that were first identified by the Greek astronomer Ptolemy in the 2nd century. It is located in the southern sky and its name means “compasses” in Latin.
Where is the Circinus Constellation?
The Circinus Constellation is located in the southern sky. Its coordinates are 14h 40m −63° and it has an area of 93 square degrees.
It is bordered by the constellations Lupus, Centaurus, Musca, and Triangulum Australe.
What are the stars in the Circinus Constellation?
There are 11 stars in the Circinus Constellation. The brightest star is Alpha Circini which has a magnitude of 3.1. It is a yellow giant star that is about 500 light years away from Earth.
The second brightest star is Beta Circini which has a magnitude of 3.8. It is a blue-white star that is about 190 light years away from Earth.
The other stars include:
Delta Circini: magnitude 4.3, red giant star, 320 light years away
Gamma Circini: magnitude 4.4, orange star, 210 light years away
Epsilon Circini: magnitude 4.6, yellow-white star, 190 light years away
Zeta Circini: magnitude 4.7, white star, 310 light years away
Iota Circini: magnitude 5.0, orange star, 310 light years away
Theta Circini: magnitude 5.4, white star, 640 light years away
Kappa Circini: magnitude 5.5, orange star, 470 light years away
Lambda Circini: magnitude 5.9, white star, 320 light years away
Mu Circini: magnitude 6.0, orange star, 1,100 light years away
The Circinus Constellation also contains two galaxies: the Circinus Galaxy and the Fornax Galaxy.
The Circinus Galaxy is a spiral galaxy that is about 12 million light years away from Earth. It is one of the closest galaxies to our own Milky Way Galaxy.
The Fornax Galaxy is an elliptical galaxy that is about 60 million light years away from Earth.
What is the myth associated with the Circinus Constellation?
There is no Greek myth associated with the Circinus Constellation. However, it is sometimes associated with the Compass of Archimedes.
Archimedes was a Greek mathematician, physicist, and engineer who lived in the 3rd century BCE. He is best known for his work on geometry and hydrostatics.
It is said that Archimedes used a compass to draw a circle with a diameter of 10 feet. This circle was then used to determine the circumference of the earth.
What are the Deep Sky Objects in the Circinus Constellation?
There are several Deep Sky Objects in the Circinus Constellation. These include:
The Circinus Galaxy: spiral galaxy, 12 million light years away
The Fornax Galaxy: elliptical galaxy, 60 million light years away
The Circinus Globular Cluster: globular cluster, 10 million light years away
The Circinus Dwarf Galaxy: dwarf galaxy, 4 million light years away
The Antennae Galaxies: interacting galaxies, 45 million light years away
The Circinus Quasar: quasar, 800 million light years away (A quasar is a massive and extremely luminous active galactic nucleus)
Can the Circinus Constellation Be Viewed Without a Telescope?
Yes, the Circinus Constellation can be viewed without a telescope. However, binoculars or a small telescope will be needed to see some of the stars and Deep Sky Objects.
Circinus Constellation’s Meteor Showers
The Circinus Constellation is home to two meteor showers: the March Equidistant Circinus Meteor Shower and the April Chi Circini Meteor Shower.
The March Equidistant Circinus Meteor Shower occurs every year from March 7-9. It is produced by the comet 209P/LINEAR.
The April Chi Circini Meteor Shower occurs every year from April 3-5. It is produced by the comet 209P/LINEAR.
The Circinus Constellation is a interesting constellation to study. It has many bright stars and deep sky objects that make it worthy of exploration.
With a little bit of effort, you should be able to find and identify it in the night sky.
Have you had any luck locating the Circinus Constellation? Let us know in the comments section below.