Dorado (Pronounciation:Door-ado, Abbrev:Dor, Latin:Doradus) is a constellation, one of 88 constellations that the night sky is divided into. The sky is not divided up equally between the constellations. Dorado takes up 179.173 sq. degrees of the night sky which equates to 0.43% of the night sky. The constellation gets its name as it name means The Goldfish . It was not one of the original constellations that had been devised by Ptolemy, instead it was created by Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman years later.
Dorado is not a member of the Zodiac group of twelve constellations that appear when the Sun sets. Dorado is a southern hemispheric constellation which means it can't be seen easily or at all from the northern hemisphere.
The brightest star in Dorado is Alpha Doradus. There are 7 Extrasolar Planets (Exoplanets) in this constellation that are detailed on this site. There is a dedicated page for exoplanets in Dorado. The current largest star so far identified in the constellation of Dorado is S Doradus. For a list of named stars, that is stars that don't start HD or HIP, please visit Dorado Star List Page.
The number of stars that have been catalogued as part of the Hipparcos Star Catalogue from Dorado is 524. The number of stars that are of magnitude 6.0 or lower in the constellation is 18. The number of stars in the constellation that make up the outline is 5.
There are no deep space objects that were identified by Charles Messier in this constellation. There are 3 non-Messier deep space objects that are covered on this site and the list is below.
The nearest star to Earth is HIP 22738 which is roughly about 36.23 Light Years from the Earth. The nearest star to the Earth with an exoplanet is HD 30177 which is about 172.3 Light Years. The furthest star that can be located in the constellation is S Doradus which is located about 169000 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 Dorado with the naked eye is Eta1 Doradus. The dim star has an apparent magnitude of 5.72. 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.
There is no Greek Legend behind this constellation. It was created by Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman to fill in the voids in the astronomical charts.
There are 2 Meteor Showers that occur during the year within this constellation based on information gathered from Adam Mickiewicz University (Poland). The ones listed as the ones I've been able to find a date range for. For others if you have the time, you can visit the AMU site, obtains the SL value then use IMO tables to calculate the date. A lot of the Meteor Showers are weak and you need to do a lot of stargazing to spot them.
|Name||Activity||Peak Activity||Closest Star|
|Gamma Velids||1-17 Jan||5/8 Jan||Regor|
|Is a Zodiac Sign||No|
|Largest Star||S Doradus|
|Brightest Star||Alpha Doradus|
|Area||179.173 sq. deg.|
|Percentage of Night Sky||0.43%|
|Site Exoplanet Count||7|
|Meteor Shower Count||2|
|Nearest Star||HIP 22738|
|Nearest Star with Exoplanet(s)||HD 30177|
|Dimmest Star||Eta1 Doradus|
|Furthest Star||S Doradus|
|Bright Star Count||18|
|Hipparcos Star Count||524|
|Main Star Count||5|
|Messier Deep Space Object Count||0|
|*Non-Messier Deep Space Object Count||3|
|Bordering / Neighbouring / Surrounding Constellations||Caelum|
*Note: The number of Non-Messier Deep Space Object Count relates to how many are covered on this site not how many there are.
The map was generated using Night Vision, an awesome free application by Brian Simpson.
|DEM L241||Supernova Remnant||160,000||-67:35:09.00||05h 36m 00m 0s|
|Ghosthead Nebula||Emission Nebula||160,000 Ly||-69d 38` 44?||05h 39m 44m 2s|
|Large Magellanic Cloud||Dwarf Galaxy||163.000||-69:45:22||05h 23m 34m 5s|
|SN1987a||Supernova Remnant||170,000||-69:16:11.79||05h 35h 28m 03|
|Tarantula Nebula (NGC2070)||Globular Cluster||160.000||-69:05.7||05h 38m 38s|
|Max Activity Date||05 Jan|
|Activity Period||1-17 Jan|