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Aquarius, The Water Carrier Constellation

Aquarius (Pronounciation:Ack-where-e-us, Abbrev:Aqr, Latin:Aquarii) is a constellation, one of 88 constellations that the night sky is divided into. The sky is not divided up equally between the constellations. Aquarius takes up 979.854 sq. degrees of the night sky which equates to 2.38% of the night sky. The constellation gets its name as it name means The Water Carrier . The constellation is one of the original constellations that was devised by the Ancient Greco-Egyptian astronomer Ptolemy who lived between 90 A.D. and 168 A.D.

Aquarius is a member constellation of the Zodiac grouping, a group of 12 star signs that astrologers use to predict someones future based on their date of birth and which constellation appeared when the Sun set. The Zodiac year may be divided up equally between the twelve signs but when they appear in the night sky no longer conforms to the Zodiac calendar. Aquarius is an equatorial constellation that can be seen by countries nearest the Equator.

The brightest star in Aquarius is Sadalsuud. There are 35 Extrasolar Planets (Exoplanets) in this constellation that are detailed on this site. There is a dedicated page for exoplanets in Aquarius. For a list of named stars, that is stars that don't start HD or HIP, please visit Aquarius Star List Page.

Aquarius Star and Deep Space Object Count

The number of stars that have been catalogued as part of the Hipparcos Star Catalogue from Aquarius is 2134. The number of stars that are of magnitude 6.0 or lower in the constellation is 99. The number of stars in the constellation that make up the outline is 17.

There are 3 deep space objects that were identified by Charles Messier in this constellation. There are no non-Messier deep space objects in this constellation that are covered at present on this site.

Stars of Interest

The nearest star to Earth is Hip 113020 which is roughly about 15.29 Light Years from the Earth. The nearest star to the Earth with an exoplanet is HIP 113020 which is about 15.29 Light Years. The furthest star that can be located in the constellation is HIP 106645 which is located about 326163.3 Light Years away from the Sun. The furthest figure is derived from either the 1997 or 2007 Hipparcos star catalogue parallax figure and it has been known to produce distances that are wrong.

The dimmest star that can be seen in Aquarius with the naked eye is 4 Aquarii. The dim star has an apparent magnitude of 5.99. The dimmest star that a person is able to see with their naked eye is 6.0 magnitude based on the table in the reference. Ref: University of Michigan

The caveat of these stars are that they are catalogued on this site. If you know of a star that is nearer or further then do let me know in the comments and I'll add it to the site. The stars mentioned are from the Hipparcos catalogue or have been added because of their special status.

Legend of Aquarius

Zeus took a liking to Ganymede, the son of Tros who built Troy. He instructed the boy to become his water bearer. The job had previously been done by Hebe, the daughter of Hera. Hera was angered at the relationship between Zeus and Ganymede that she let it be known. In revenge that Zeus glorified Ganymede by turning him into the constellation.

There are no major meteor showers that radiate from within this constellation.

Aquarius Facts


NameAquarius
AbbreviationAqr
Is a Zodiac Sign Yes
Brightest StarSadalsuud
Area979.854 sq. deg.
Percentage of Night Sky2.38%
Size Position10th
Hemisphere Equatorial
Site Exoplanet Count35
Meteor Shower Count27
Nearest StarHip 113020
Nearest Star with Exoplanet(s)HIP 113020
Dimmest Star4 Aquarii
Furthest StarHIP 106645
Bright Star Count99
Hipparcos Star Count2134
Main Star Count17
Messier Deep Space Object Count3
*Non-Messier Deep Space Object Count0
Bordering / Neighbouring / Surrounding ConstellationsPegasus
Equuleus
Delphinus
Aquila
Capricornus
Piscis Austrinus
Sculptor
Cetus
Pisces

*Note: The number of Non-Messier Deep Space Object Count relates to how many are covered on this site not how many there are.


Aquarius Constellation Map


Aquarius Constellation Star Map

The map was generated using Night Vision, an awesome free application by Brian Simpson.



List of Deep Space Objects (Galaxies, Nebulas, Supernovas, etc) in Aquarius


NameTypeDistanceDeclinationRight Ascension
Messier 2 (NGC 7089)Globular Cluster33000-00:4921h 33m 5
Messier 72 (NGC6981)Globular Cluster53.40-55.74 kly-12:3220h 53m 5
Messier 73 (NGC6994)System of 4 Stars~2.5 kly-12:3820h 58m 9


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