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Orion Constellation

Orion (Pronounciation:Ore-i-on, Abbrev:Ori, Latin:Orionis) is a constellation, one of 88 constellations that the night sky is divided into. The sky is not divided up equally between the constellations. Orion takes up 594.12 sq. degrees of the night sky which equates to 1.44% of the night sky. The constellation gets its name as it name means The Hunter . 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.

Orion is not a member of the Zodiac group of twelve constellations that appear when the Sun sets. Orion is an equatorial constellation that can be seen by countries nearest the Equator.

The brightest star in Orion is Rigel. There are 15 Extrasolar Planets (Exoplanets) in this constellation that are detailed on this site. The current largest star so far identified in the constellation of Orion is Betelgeuse.

Orion Star and Deep Space Object Count

The number of stars that have been catalogued as part of the Hipparcos Star Catalogue from Orion is 1952. The number of stars that are of magnitude 6.0 or lower in the constellation is 128. The number of stars in the constellation that make up the outline is 20.

There are 3 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.

Stars of Interest

The nearest star to Earth is Gliese 205 which is roughly about 18.45 Light Years from the Earth. The nearest star to the Earth with an exoplanet is HIP 22627 which is about 40.08 Light Years. The furthest star that can be located in the constellation is HIP 27033 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 Orion with the naked eye is HD 44497. The dim star has an apparent magnitude of 6. 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 the Constellation

Orion was a strong hunter who attracted the eyes of many women and goddesses. This caused a lot of jealousy. He was created for a poor shepherd when he looked after Zeus one night. The goddess Artemis was infatuated with the hunter which made Apollo angry. He sent Scorpius to kill Orion. The scorpion scarpered and Orion followed. Apollo tricked Artemis into killing Orion with her bow. Apollo put him along with his dog Sirius into the sky. The Pleiades are said to be seven daughters of Atlas, the Titan. When Orion started his infatuation for them, Zeus turned them first into doves then stars to keep Atlas company.

Stars of Interest

Orion thanks to the three stars that make up the belt is one of the most easiest constellations to identify in the night sky. If you are in the northern hemisphere, you just need to look in a southerly direction to spot the constellation.


Betelgeuse is the star that is most likely to turn into supernova soon. However given that we're so far away from the star, it will not affect life on Earth. It will also not happen for thousands of years but when it does, it will be relatively near compared to other explosions.

Belt of Orion

The belt makes Orion one of the most easy constellations to spot in the night sky due to the alignment of the three stars, Alnitak, Alnilam and Mintaka. Once you have located the belt, working out the other stars should be easy.

Deep Space Objects

Horsehead Nebula

The constellation contains two of the most famous nebulas, the Horsehead Nebula, to the "south" of Alnitak, so called because at the centre is a dark spot in the shape of a Horses head. The other being the Great Orion Nebula, a beautiful looking nebula.

Meteor Showers

There are 13 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
OrionidsOctober 15-29Oct. 21Xi Orionis

Orion Facts

Is a Zodiac Sign No
Largest StarBetelgeuse
Brightest StarRigel
Area594.12 sq. deg.
Percentage of Night Sky1.44%
Size Position26th
Hemisphere Equatorial
Site Exoplanet Count15
Meteor Shower Count13
Nearest StarGliese 205
Nearest Star with Exoplanet(s)HIP 22627
Dimmest StarHD 44497
Furthest StarHIP 27033
Bright Star Count128
Hipparcos Star Count1952
Main Star Count20
Messier Deep Space Object Count3
*Non-Messier Deep Space Object Count1
Bordering / Neighbouring / Surrounding ConstellationsTaurus

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

Orion Constellation Map

Orion Constellation Star Map

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

List of Stars with Exoplanets in Orion

StarDistance (Lt. Yrs.)Exoplanet CountDeclinationRight Ascension
CVSO 302+01 d 34` 24.3305h 25m 07.557
HD 290327184.801-02d 16` 38.605h 23m 21.54
HD 31253164.071+12d 21` 08.304h 54m 43.60
HD 34445151.561+07d 21` 13.305h 17m 40.98
HD 37605143.432+06d 03` 40.205h 40m 01.70
HD 38529128.113+01d 10` 06.705h 46m 34.96
HD 38801295.971-08d 19` 39.105h 47m 59.21
HD 3885849.501-04d 05` 38.705h 48m 34.90
HD 39392307.121+22d 04` 20.405h 53m 19.04
HD 4261876.651+06d 47` 01.306h 12m 00.45
HIP 2262740.081+06d 28` 38.304h 52m 05.64

List of Named Stars in Orion without Extrasolar Planets

As there's so many stars in the cosmos, not all the stars are listed here. The site has lots of stars not listed so if your star isn't listed and you know the Henry Draper or Hipparcos ID, type https://www.universeguide.com/star/ then followed by the HIPNNNNNN or HDNNNN where NNNNN is the number part of the name. The stars that I do list have either a traditional name, a bayer or other classification name.

StarDistance (Lt. Yrs.)DeclinationRight Ascension
11 Orionis365.24+15d 24` 15.105h 04m 34.14
13 Orionis90.25+09d 28` 21.805h 07m 38.32
14 Orionis210.84+08d 29` 54.905h 07m 52.87
15 Orionis538.22+15d 35` 50.205h 09m 41.96
16 Orionis178.43+09d 49` 46.605h 09m 19.60
18 Orionis443.16+11d 20` 28.905h 16m 04.14
21 Orionis202.08+02d 35` 45.405h 19m 11.23
22 Orionis929.24-00d 22` 56.905h 21m 45.75
23 Orionis1553.16+03d 32` 40.005h 22m 50.00
25 Orionis1038.74+01d 50` 47.205h 24m 44.83
27 Orionis186.59-00d 53` 30.005h 24m 28.91
29 Orionis157.34-07d 48` 28.605h 23m 56.84
30 Orionis1136.46+03d 05` 44.405h 26m 50.23
31 Orionis508.04-01d 05` 31.805h 29m 43.98
32 Orionis302.84+05d 56` 53.605h 30m 47.05
33 Orionis1136.46+03d 17` 31.705h 31m 14.53
35 Orionis446.19+14d 18` 20.105h 33m 54.29
38 Orionis275.94+03d 46` 01.005h 34m 16.79
42 Orionis883.91-04d 50` 18.005h 35m 23.16
45 Orionis359.61-04d 51` 21.905h 35m 39.49
49 Orionis145.48-07d 12` 45.805h 38m 53.09
5 Orionis590.88+02d 30` 29.804h 53m 22.76
51 Orionis293.58+01d 28` 28.805h 42m 28.66
52 Orionis538.22+06d 27` 15.205h 48m 00.23
55 Orionis1048.76-07d 31` 04.805h 51m 21.98
56 Orionis1259.32+01d 51` 18.605h 52m 26.44
57 Orionis1822.14+19d 44` 58.605h 54m 56.69
59 Orionis364.43+01d 50` 13.705h 58m 24.44
6 Orionis228.25 +11d 25` 33.504h 54m 46.91
60 Orionis445.58+00d 33` 10.705h 58m 49.58
63 Orionis1309.89+05d 25` 11.906h 04m 58.19
64 Orionis718.42+19d 41` 26.206h 03m 27.36
66 Orionis4727.00+04d 09` 31.206h 04m 58.36
68 Orionis832.05+19d 47` 26.106h 12m 01.34
69 Orionis528.63+16d 07` 49.606h 12m 03.28
71 Orionis67.89+19d 09` 24.806h 14m 50.94
72 Orionis522.70+16d 08` 35.506h 15m 25.13
73 Orionis1164.87+12d 33` 03.906h 15m 44.97
74 Orionis62.78+12d 16` 18.206h 16m 26.57
75 Orionis225.41+09d 56` 33.106h 17m 06.62
Alnilam1976.75-01d 12` 06.905h 36m 12.81
Alnitak736.26-01d 56` 33.305h 40m 45.52
Bellatrix252.45+06d 20` 59.005h 25m 07.87
Betelgeuse497.96+07d 24` 25.305h 55m 10.29
BL Orionis65232.67+14d 43` 19.206h 25m 28.18
Chi1 Orionis28.26+20d 16` 35.105h 54m 23.08
Chi2 Orionis1802.01+20d 08` 18.506h 03m 55.18
CK Orionis541.80+04d 12` 17.505h 30m 19.91
DN Orionis942.67+10d 13` 05.006h 00m 28.35
Eta Orionis976.54-02d 23` 49.705h 24m 28.62
EY Orionis3261.63-05d 42` 13.505h 31m 18.41
Gliese 20518.45-03d 40` 19.705h 31m 26.95
Gliese 20836.66+11d 19` 40.805h 36m 30.99
GW Orionis896.05+11d 52` 12.705h 29m 08.39
Meissa1098.19+09d 56` 03.005h 35m 08.28
Mintaka692.49-00d 17` 56.705h 32m 00.40
Mu Orionis154.95+09d 38` 50.506h 02m 22.99
Nair Al Saif2329.74-05d 54` 35.605h 35m 25.98
Nu Orionis516.08+14d 46` 06.706h 07m 34.32
Omega Orionis1382.05+04d 07` 17.305h 39m 11.15
Omicron1 Orionis651.02+14d 15` 02.804h 52m 31.96
Omicron2 Orionis185.95+13d 30` 52.504h 56m 22.32
Phi1 Orionis1087.21+09d 29` 22.505h 34m 49.24
Phi2 Orionis117.49+09d 17` 29.105h 36m 54.33
Pi1 Orionis116.32+10d 09` 04.104h 54m 53.70
Pi2 Orionis224.48+08d 54` 00.904h 50m 36.72
Pi4 Orionis1052.14+05d 36` 18.404h 51m 12.37
Pi5 Orionis1342.24+02d 26` 26.404h 54m 15.10
Pi6 Orionis945.40+01d 42` 50.504h 58m 32.90
Rho Orionis349.96+02d 51` 40.505h 13m 17.48
Rigel862.87-08d 12` 05.905h 14m 32.27
RS Orionis4026.71+14d 40` 41.306h 22m 13.19
S Orionis3664.76-04d 41` 32.705h 29m 00.89
Saiph647.15-09d 40` 10.605h 47m 45.39
Sigma Orionis1072.91-02d 36` 00.205h 38m 44.77
Tabit26.32+06d 57` 40.504h 49m 50.14
Tau Orionis494.19 -06d 50` 39.805h 17m 36.40
Thabit2861.08-07d 18` 05.505h 31m 55.86
Theta1 Orionis A-05 d 23 ` 14.305h 35m 15.82
Theta1 Orionis C-05 d 23 ` 22.905h 35m 16.47
Theta1 Orionis D-05d 23` 15.705h 35m 17.20
Theta2 Orionis1545.80-05d 24` 57.805h 35m 22.90
U Orionis1424.29+20d 10` 30.705h 55m 49.18
UX Orionis913.62-03d 47` 14.305h 04m 29.99
V1031 Orionis668.37-10d 31` 58.505h 47m 26.90
V1192 Orionis721.60+03d 17` 12.205h 00m 08.22
V1197 Orionis526.07-01d 36` 47.405h 43m 09.32
V1357 Orionis58.55+10d 37` 40.306h 13m 12.46
V1369 Orionis916.19+04d 00` 43.105h 21m 19.31
V1377 Orionis1553.16-03d 15` 10.205h 35m 35.90
V1389 Orionis595.19+06d 00` 58.606h 12m 59.57
V1649 Orionis276.41+05d 19` 23.005h 23m 31.08
V346 Orionis1575.67+01d 43` 48.305h 24m 42.80
V351 Orionis547.25+00d 08` 40.405h 44m 18.79
V901 Orionis1076.45-01d 30` 25.905h 40m 56.37
VV Orionis1469.20-01d 09` 21.905h 33m 31.45
W Orionis1230.81+01d 10` 39.505h 05m 23.71
Xi Orionis607.38+14d 12` 31.706h 11m 56.40
Z Orionis7412.80+13d 41` 42.005h 55m 50.93

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

NameTypeDistanceDeclinationRight Ascension
De Mairan's NebulaEmission/Reflection Nebula1.6-05:1605h 35m 6
Horsehead NebulaDark Nebula1.500-02:27:3005h 40m 59m 0s
M78 Reflection NebulaReflection Nebula1.6+00:0305h 46m 7
The Great Orion NebulaEmission/Reflection Nebula1.324-1.364-05:2705h 35m 4

Orion Constellation's Star Breakdown

Type Breakdown

AWhite 7,500 - 10,000k568
BBlue-White 10,500 - 30,000k418
FYellow-White 6,000 - 7,500k341
KLight Orange Star 3,700 - 5,200k280
GYellow 5,200 - 6,000k214
MRed Dwarf Star <3,700k48
OBlue Star >33,000k12

Size Breakdown

VMain Sequence363
IIINormal Giant106
IIBright Giant18
IbLess Luminous Supergiant10
IaLuminous Supergiant4
IabIntermediate Luminous Supergiant1

Breakdown of Dwarf Stars by Type

sdsd Type SubDwarf Star1

Breakdown of Carbon Stars by Type

NN-Type Carbon Star6
CC-Type Carbon Star4
SS-Type Carbon Star2

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