"Orion and His Rival; Plus, The Moon Meets Antares"

Scheduled air date: 2004 Jan 12-18

The brightest star in the well-known winter constellation Orion is Betelegeuse...
(Shown around 7:00 PM at mid-January for mid-Northern latitudes.)

...Betelgeuse is an extremely large star, pulsating in size between about the equivalent of Mars' orbit, to that of Jupiter's (about 500 to 900 times the diameter of our Sun)!

In the morning sky, the summer constellation Scorpius can be seen rising just before dawn.  The size of Scorpius' brightest star, Antares, is about midway between Betelgeuse's smallest and largest diameters, or about 700 times the diameter of our Sun.  The Waning Crescent Moon appears next to Antares on the morning of January 18, with the elusive tiny planet Mercury close to the horizon.
(Shown about an hour before sunrise on January 18th for mid-Northern latitudes.)

If you wish to view illustrations for other episodes, please see our Star Gazer Illustrated directory.

Illustrations on this page were created using TheSky Astronomy Software, an advanced desktop planetarium program designed for Windows.

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