Ophiuchus Constellation Facts, Myth, Location, and Stars

Here are some facts about the Ophiuchus Constellation that will help you understand this amazing star formation.

Ophiuchus Constellation Facts, Myth, Location, and Stars

Astronomers from all around the world have long been fascinated by the Ophiuchus constellation.

The constellation is one of the 88 modern constellations first defined by the International Astronomical Union in 1922.

It is located in the fourth quadrant of the southern hemisphere and can be seen by observers in latitudes between +80° and -80°. 

The Ophiuchus Constellation is relatively small, and its brightest star, Alpha Ophiuchi, is a spectacular red giant.

This constellation is one of the most popular among amateur and professional astronomers, and many interesting facts, myths, and stories are associated with it.

Where Can You Spot the Ophiuchus Constellation in the Night Sky?

When looking for the Ophiuchus constellation in the night sky, look for the bright star Alpha Ophiuchi.

The constellation is large and is easy to spot in the sky.

Astronomers suggest that the best time to view the Ophiuchus Constellation is in late summer.

Astronomers and fans of the night sky can find the constellation by looking for the “teapot” shape of Sagittarius.

Ophiuchus is located between Scorpius to the west and Hercules to the east and is bordered by Aquila, Serpens Caput, and Sagittarius.

What is the Mythology of the Constellation Ophiuchus?

The Ophiuchus constellation has been associated with several constellations over the years.

In Greek mythology, the Ophiuchus Constellation is often associated with Asclepius, the god of healing.

In some stories, Asclepius was born under the Ophiuchus Constellation to bring people back from the dead.

The constellation is also sometimes associated with Hercules, as the two constellations are located close to each other in the night sky.

Greek mythology also tells the story of Cadmus, who killed a dragon and sowed its teeth in the ground.

These teeth grew into warriors, and the area where they fought was known as the “Dragon’s Lair.”

This story is often associated with the Ophiuchus constellation, as the Dragon’s Lair is located in the same area of the sky.

What Are the Stars of the Ophiuchus Constellation?

There are ten main stars in the Ophiuchus Constellation, and knowing their names will help you spot the Constellation in the night sky.

Here are the stars of the Ophiuchus Constellation

Alpha Ophiuchi

The brightest star in the Constellation, Alpha Ophiuchi, is a red giant that is also known as “Cranium.” Alpha Ophiuchi is located about 48.6 light-years from Earth, and astronomers believe that it is about 1.7 times the size of our Sun.

Beta Ophiuchi

Beta Ophiuchi is a binary star system located about 81.87 light-years from Earth. The two stars in the system are both orange giants, and they orbit each other every 1,600 years. The star system is also known as “Muphrid.”

Delta Ophiuchi

Delta Ophiuchi is a double star system that is located about 171.2 light-years from Earth. The two stars in the system are both white giants, and they orbit each other every 10,000 years.

70 Ophiuchi

70 Ophiuchi is a binary star system located about 16.6 light-years from Earth. The two stars in the system are both yellow dwarf stars, and they orbit each other every 26 years. The stars in the system are also known as “Pherkad Minor.”

Epsilon Ophiuchi

This star is a red giant that is located about 106.3 light-years from Earth. Epsilon Ophiuchi is also known as “Giedi Prime,” and it is about 1.8 times the size of our Sun. Locating this star in the night sky is relatively easy, as it is one of the brightest stars in the Ophiuchus Constellation.

61 Ophiuchi

61 Ophiuchi is a binary star system located about 276.64 light-years from Earth. The two stars in the system are both orange dwarf stars, and they orbit each other every 29 years.

Zeta Ophiuchi

Zeta Ophiuchi is a blue giant star located about 365.3 light-years from Earth. Zeta Ophiuchi is about 2.5 times the size of our Sun, and it is one of the hottest stars in the night sky.

Kappa Ophiuchi

Kappa Ophiuchi is a binary star system that is located about 91.5 light-years from Earth. The star is visible to the naked eye, and the two stars in the system are both orange giants.

Nu Ophiuchi

Nu Ophiuchi is a binary star system that is located about 151 light-years from Earth. The two stars in the system are both red giants, and they orbit each other every 10,000 years.

Barnard’s Star

This star is located six light-years from Earth and is a red dwarf star. Barnard’s star is the second closest star to our Solar System, and it is thought to have a planet orbiting it.

Can the Ophiuchus Constellation be Used to Navigate?

The Ophiuchus Constellation can be used for navigation as it is located close to the ecliptic.

The ecliptic is the path that the Sun takes across the sky and the path that planets take when they orbit the Sun.

When using the Ophiuchus Constellation for navigation, you will need to know the position of the stars in the Constellation.

Locating the stars in the Constellation can be done by using a star chart. When you look at Ophiuchus, you will notice that it is shaped like a coiled snake.

The head of the snake is located at the bottom left of the Constellation, and the tail is located at the top right.

This can be very beneficial for sailors as it can help them find their way in the night.

Looking into the rich history of the Ophiuchus Constellation can be a rewarding experience.

The Constellation has been home to some of the most famous stars in the night sky, and astronomers have been able to learn a great deal about the stars in the Constellation.

The Ophiuchus Constellation is a beautiful sight in the night sky, and it is definitely worth taking the time to learn about.

Whether you are interested in the history of the Constellation or you simply want to find your way in the night sky, the Ophiuchus Constellation can be a great area to study.

Ophiuchus Constellation Facts

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