Scorpius (Pronounciation:Skorp-i-us, Abbrev:Sco, Latin:Scorpii) is a constellation, one of 88 constellations that the night sky is divided into. The sky is not divided up equally between the constellations. Scorpius takes up 496.783 sq. degrees of the night sky which equates to 1.2% of the night sky. The constellation gets its name as it name means The Scorpion . 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.
Scorpius 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. Scorpius is an equatorial constellation that can be seen by countries nearest the Equator.
The brightest star in Scorpius is Antares. There are 38 Extrasolar Planets (Exoplanets) in this constellation that are detailed on this site. There is a dedicated page for exoplanets in Scorpius. The current largest star so far identified in the constellation of Scorpius is AH Scorpii. For a list of named stars, that is stars that don't start HD or HIP, please visit Scorpius Star List Page.
The number of stars that have been catalogued as part of the Hipparcos Star Catalogue from Scorpius is 1707. The number of stars that are of magnitude 6.0 or lower in the constellation is 103. The number of stars in the constellation that make up the outline is 15.
There are 4 deep space objects that were identified by Charles Messier in this constellation. There are 2 non-Messier deep space objects that are covered on this site and the list is below.
The nearest star to Earth is HIP 86214 which is roughly about 16.56 Light Years from the Earth. The nearest star to the Earth with an exoplanet is HD 147513 which is about 41.68 Light Years. The furthest star that can be located in the constellation is HIP 81070 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 Scorpius with the naked eye is V906 Scorpii. 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.
Whilst the reason for why it was sent to kill Orion is disputed, its actions are not. He came from out of the ground and stung Orion to death. Scorpius was sent by Gaia or Hera to kill Orion because he had displeased her. Another story had Scorpius sent because Apollo had grown jealous of Artemis' attention to the man. They appear in opposite parts of the sky to give the illusion that Orion is still running from the Scorpius.
The centre of the the Milky Way is on the eastern edge of the constellation, Scorpius is just right on the borders with it. If the border was a few degrees over, it'd have the centre. Despite not having the centre of the Milky Way, it does boast some other points of interest. The constellation has AH Scorpii which is one of the largest stars to have been so far discovered. The stars would stretch out past the orbit of the Earth if it was in the centre of our solar system.
Jabbah, not to be confused with Jabba, the Hutt, the infamous slug like creature in the Star Wars films is a particularly interesting star. Jabbah along with AR Cassiopeiae have the most number of stars in a multiple star system, both having seven. No other star matches those for multi-star systems.
You might notice that there are two stars in the list called Alniyat. The reason for this is because there are two stars with that name, this is because two stars have been named it, Tau Scorpii and Sigma Scorpii.There are no major meteor showers that radiate from within this constellation.
|Is a Zodiac Sign||Yes|
|Largest Star||AH Scorpii|
|Area||496.783 sq. deg.|
|Percentage of Night Sky||1.2%|
|Site Exoplanet Count||38|
|Meteor Shower Count||9|
|Nearest Star||HIP 86214|
|Nearest Star with Exoplanet(s)||HD 147513|
|Dimmest Star||V906 Scorpii|
|Furthest Star||HIP 81070|
|Bright Star Count||103|
|Hipparcos Star Count||1707|
|Main Star Count||15|
|Messier Deep Space Object Count||4|
|*Non-Messier Deep Space Object Count||2|
|Bordering / Neighbouring / Surrounding Constellations||Ophiuchus|
*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.
|Butterfly Cluster (M6, NGC6405)||Open Cluster||1600||-32:13||17h 40m 1|
|Butterfly Nebula (NGC6302)||Planetary Nebula||3,800 LY||-37d 06` 15.94||17h 13m 44m 211|
|Cats Paw Nebula (NGC6334)||Emissions Nebula||about 5,500||-35:57:47||17h 19h 58|
|Lobster Nebula (NGC6357)||Supernova Remnant||about 8,0000||-34:20||17h 24|
|Messier 4 (NGC6121)||Globular Cluster||7200||-26:32||16h 23m 6|
|Messier 80 (NGC6093)||Globular Cluster||32600||-22:59||16h 17m 0|
|Ptolemys Cluster (M7, NGC6475)||Open Cluster||0.65-1.31 kly||-34:49||17h 53m 9|