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Draco Constellation

Draco (Pronounciation:Drac-o, Abbrev:Dra) is a constellation, one of 88 constellations that the night sky is divided into. The sky is not divided up equally between the constellations. Draco takes up 1082.952 sq. degrees of the night sky which equates to 2.63% of the night sky. The constellation gets its name as it name means The Dragon . 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.

Draco is a northern hemispheric constellation which means it can't be seen easily or at all from the southern hemisphere. The brightest star in Draco is Eltanin. There are 7 Extrasolar Planets (Exoplanets) detailed on this site.

Legend of the Constellation

There are said to be two possible stories behind this constellation. The first is that the Dragon that fought Minerva during the wars between the Gods and the Giants. The Dragon got there because it lost the fight with Minerva and was thrown into the heavens.

The other story is that it is the dragon that Hera put in the Garden of Hesperidia`s to protect the golden apples. The apples grew on a tree given to her as a wedding present by Gaia. Hercules slayed the dragon by throwing a spear into the garden. Atlas retrieved the apples for Hercules who took them to Eurystheus.

Meteor Showers

There are 35 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.

NameActivityPeak ActivityClosest Star
January Draconids10-24 Jan13/16 Jan
Eta DraconidsMar 22 - Apri 8Mar 29/31Aldhibain
DraconidsOctober 6-10Oct. 9/10Rastaban

Draco Constellation Map

Draco Constellation Star Map

List of Named Stars in Draco

StarDistanceDeclinationRight Ascension
Aldhibah339.75+65 d 42 ` 52.717h 08m 47.23
Aldhibain87.73+61 d 30 ` 50.716h 23m 59.51
Alrakis87.96+54 d 28 ` 11.517h 05m 20.18
Alsafi18.81+69 d 39 ` 55.419h 32m 20.59
Altais100.23+67 d 39 ` 40.719h 12m 33.15
Edasich102.18+58 d 57 ` 57.715h 24m 55.78
Eltanin147.59+51 d 29 ` 20.217h 56m 36.38
Gianfar334.18+69 d 19 ` 52.011h 31m 24.29
Grumium111.47+56 d 52 ` 20.817h 53m 31.63
Kuma98.96+55 d 11 ` 02.817h 32m 10.42
Rastaban361.6+52 d 18 ` 04.917h 30m 25.98
Thuban308.87+64 d 22 ` 32.914h 04m 23.43
Tyl87.73+61 d 30 ` 50.716h 23m 59.51

Objects of Interest (Galaxies, Nebulas, Supernovas, etc) in Draco

NameTypeDistanceDeclinationRight Ascension
Spindle GalaxyLenticular Galaxy30 Million+55:45:4815h 06h 29m 5
Tadpole GalaxyBarred Spiral Galaxy400 Million+55:25:3216h 6h 3

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