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Ankaa (Alpha Phoenicis) - HD2261 - HIP2081 - HR99

Ankaa (Alpha Phoenicis) is a orange to red giant star that can be located in the constellation of Phoenix. It is the 82nd brightest star in the night sky. Alpha Phoenicis is the Bayer Classification for the star. The Id of the star in the Yale Bright Star Catalogue is HR99. HIP2081 is the reference name for the star in the Hipparcos Star Catalogue. The Id of the star in the Henry Draper catalogue is HD2261. In Arabic, it is known as Al-'Anka'.

Ankaa is a binary multiple star system where its companion stars orbit at about 10.5 years so pretty slow compared to some other binary stars. It has already depleted its hydrogen and now currently burning its stock of Helium before it dies quietly.

It is one of the few stars in the southern hemisphere to have a common name. Its name is derived from the Arabic word for Phoenix, Al-anqa.

Location of Ankaa

The location of the star in the galaxy is determined by the Right Ascension (R.A.) and Declination (Dec.), these are equivalent to the Longitude and Latitude on the Earth. The Right Ascension is how far expressed in time (hh:mm:ss) the star is along the celestial equator. If the R.A. is positive then its eastwards. The Declination is how far north or south the star is compared to the celestial equator and is expressed in degrees. For Ankaa, the location is 00h 26m 16.87 and -42d18`18.4 .

Proper Motion of Ankaa

All stars like planets orbit round a central spot, in the case of planets, its the central star such as the Sun. In the case of a star, its the galactic centre. The constellations that we see today will be different than they were 50,000 years ago or 50,000 years from now. Proper Motion details the movements of these stars and are measured in milliarcseconds. The star is moving -356.30 ± 0.52 miliarcseconds/year towards the north and 233.05 ± 0.73 miliarcseconds/year east if we saw them in the horizon.

Ankaa Luminosity

Luminosity is the amount of energy that a star pumps out and its relative to the amount that our star, the Sun gives out. The figure of 96.0000000 that I have given is based on the Spectral Types page that I have found on the Internet. You might find a different figure, one that may have been calculated rather than generalised that I have done. The figure is always the amount times the luminosity of the Sun. It is an imprecise figure because of a number of factors including but not limited to whether the star is a variable star and distance.

Physical Properties (Colour, Temperature, Radius) of Ankaa

Ankaa has a spectral type of K0III.... This means the star is a orange to red giant star. The star has a B-V Colour Index of 1.08 which means the star's temperature has been calculated using information from Morgans @ Uni.edu at being 4,700 Kelvin.

Ankaa has been calculated as 11.08 times bigger than the Sun.The Sun's radius is 695,800km, therefore the star's radius is an estimated 7,712,354.95.km.

Ankaa Apparent and Absolute Magnitudes

Ankaa has an apparent magnitude of 2.40 which is how bright we see the star from Earth. Apparent Magnitude is also known as Visual Magnitude. If you used the 1997 Parallax value, you would get an absolute magnitude of 0.52 If you used the 2007 Parallax value, you would get an absolute magnitude of 0.33. Magnitude, whether it be apparent/visual or absolute magnitude is measured by a number, the smaller the number, the brighter the Star is. Our own Sun is the brightest star and therefore has the lowest of all magnitudes, -26.74. A faint star will have a high number.

Distance to Ankaa

Using the original Hipparcos data that was released in 1997, the parallax to the star was given as 42.14 which gave the calculated distance to Ankaa as 77.40 light years away from Earth or 23.73 parsecs. It would take a spaceship travelling at the speed of light, 77.40 years to get there. We don't have the technology or spaceship that can carry people over that distance yet.

In 2007, Hipparcos data was revised with a new parallax of 38.50 which put Ankaa at a distance of 84.72 light years or 25.97 parsecs. It should not be taken as though the star is moving closer or further away from us. It is purely that the distance was recalculated.

Source of Information

The source of the information if it has a Hip I.D. is from Simbad, the Hipparcos data library based at the University at Strasbourg, France. Hipparcos was a E.S.A. satellite operation launched in 1989 for four years. The items in red are values that I've calculated so they could well be wrong. Information regarding Stellar Age, Metallicity or Mass is from the E.U. Exoplanets. The information was obtained as of 12th Feb 2017.

Ankaa Facts

Alternative Names

Traditional/Proper NameAnkaa
Arabic NameAl-'Anka'
English MeaningPhoenix
Bayer DesignationAlpha Phoenicis
Hipparcos Library I.D.2081
Yale Bright Star Catalogue (HR) Id99
Henry Draper Designation2261

Visual Facts

Star Typegiant star
Absolute Magnitude0.52 / 0.33
Apparent Magnitude2.40
Right Ascension (R.A.)00h 26m 16.87
Declination (Dec.)-42d18`18.4
1997 Distance from Earth42.14 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 77.40 Light Years
 23.73 Parsecs
2007 Revised Distance from Earth38.50 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 84.72 Light Years
 25.97 Parsecs
Proper Motion Dec.-356.30 ± 0.52 milliarcseconds/year
Proper Motion RA.233.05 ± 0.73 milliarcseconds/year
B-V Index1.08
Spectral TypeK0III...
Brightest in Night Sky82nd
Colour(K) Orange to Red

Estimated Facts

Radius (x the Sun)11.08
Luminosity (x the Sun)96.0000000
Calculated Effective Temperature4,700 Kelvin

Sources and Links

SIMBAD SourceLink

Related Stars

Location of Ankaa in Phoenix


Ankaa (Alpha Phoenicis) Location in Phoenix

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


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