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Antares – Fire Star – near moon August 7

7 Aug 2011, 08:01 UTC
Antares – Fire Star – near moon August 7
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Antares is a red star in the south each summer. It was considered the Fire Star of the ancient Chinese.

You’ve got about another month or two to see a uniquely summer star, Antares in the constellation Scorpius, in the evening. It is the brightest star near the waxing gibbous moon tonight, in the southern sky as night begins. The moon and Antares will drift westward throughout the night, to set around midnight.
Antares sets some 4 minutes earlier with each passing night. By late September, Antares will be tough to spot in the southwestern twilight after sunset.
In ancient Chinese thought, the summer season was associated with the direction south, with the element fire, and with the color red. No wonder, then, that this reddish star in the south – beautiful Antares – was considered the Fire Star of the ancient Chinese.
To us in the northern hemisphere, Antares appears as a bright reddish star that rides relatively low in the south all summer. We know it as a great ball of gases, a thermonuclear cauldron radiating unimaginable amounts of energy into the blackness and vastness of space.
Yet to us – as to the ancient ...

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