Astronomy Picture of the Day



The Big Dipper

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#97594 by @ 09.01.2007 00:00 - nach oben -
The Big Dipper


Explanation:
Do you see it?

This common question frequently precedes the rediscovery of one of the most commonly recognized configurations of stars on the northern sky: the
Big Dipper.

This grouping of stars is one of the few things that has likely been seen, and will be seen, by
every generation.

The Big Dipper is not by itself a
constellation.

Although part of the constellation of the Great Bear (Ursa Major), the
Big Dipper is an
asterism
that has been known by different names to different societies.

Five of the
Big Dipper stars are actually near each other in
space and were likely formed at nearly the same time.

Connecting two stars in the far part of the Big Dipper will lead one to
Polaris, the North Star, which is part of the
Little Dipper.

Relative stellar motions will cause the
Big Dipper to slowly change its
apparent
configuration
over the next 100,000 years.




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