Wednesday 20 May 2020

Astrognome A-Z of Constellations # 24 Columba

Columba the Dove
Columba the Dove which represents the dove that followed Noah’s Ark, or some legends say it was the dove that the Argonauts sent ahead to help them pass safely through the clashing rocks at the entrance to the Black Sea. If it was higher in the sky it would be quite easy to see. Columba was added to the night sky by the Dutch astronomer Petrus Plancius in 1592.
Alpha or Phact which means ‘Ring Dove’ is of magnitude 2.6 and is 260 light years away. It is a B7 class star with a surface temperature of 12,500 ‘C much hotter than the Sun.
Just below alpha and to the left is beta or Wazn which means ‘Weight’. It is a K1 orange-hued giant star of magnitude 3.1, Wazn is 87 light-years from Earth.

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