PEKKA PARVIAINEN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PEKKA PARVIAINEN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Rigel star in Orion. Optical image of the lower half of the constellation Orion, showing the bright star Rigel (lower centre). The celebrated Orion nebula is seen as a pink smudge at upper left. Rigel is the seventh brightest star in the sky, despite being over 900 light years away. It is around 57,000 times brighter than our Sun, and is 50 times the size. Orion straddles the celestial equator, and is seen equally well from either hemisphere. The farthest right of the three stars in his belt (at top) lies on the equator itself. The starburst around the brighter stars is an effect of the lens used to take the photograph. North is towards top right corner.
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