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Menkalinan, Beta Aurigae, 34 Aurigae, HD40183, HIP28360, HR2088

Menkalinan (Beta Aurigae) is a blue eclipsing binary system main sequence dwarf star that can be located in the constellation of Auriga. Menkalinan is the 42nd brightest star in the night sky and the 3rd brightest star in Auriga based on the Hipparcos 2007 apparent magnitude. The star can be seen with the naked eye, that is, you don't need a telescope/binoculars to see it.

Beta Aurigae is the Bayer Classification for the star. The Id of the star in the Yale Bright Star Catalogue is HR2088. HIP28360 is the reference name for the star in the Hipparcos Star Catalogue. The Id of the star in the Henry Draper catalogue is HD40183.

Menkalinan has alternative name(s), bet Aur. In Arabic, it is known as Mankib Dhi-al-'Inan.

Location of Menkalinan

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 Menkalinan, the location is 05h 59m 31.77 and +44d 56` 50.8 .

Proper Motion of Menkalinan

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 -0.95 ± 0.11 miliarcseconds/year towards the north and -56.44 ± 0.23 miliarcseconds/year east if we saw them in the horizon.

Menkalinan 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 17.0000000 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 Menkalinan

Menkalinan has a spectral type of A2V. This means the star is a blue main sequence dwarf star. The star is 7424.00000000 Parsecs from the Galactic Centre or terms of Light Years is 24214.3666585600000000s. The star has a B-V Colour Index of 0.07 which means the star's temperature has been calculated using information from Morgans @ Uni.edu at being 8,718 Kelvin.

Menkalinan Radius has been calculated as being 4.31 times bigger than the Sun.The Sun's radius is 695,800km, therefore the star's radius is an estimated 2,996,092.25.km. However with the 2007 release of updated Hipparcos files, the radius is now calculated at being round 4.25. The figure is derived at by using the formula from SDSS and has been known to produce widely incorrect figures. The star's Iron Abundance is -0.11 with an error value of 9.99 Fe/H with the Sun has a value of 1 to put it into context.

Menkalinan Apparent and Absolute Magnitudes

Menkalinan has an apparent magnitude of 1.90 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 -0.11 If you used the 2007 Parallax value, you would get an absolute magnitude of -0.08. 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 Menkalinan

Using the original Hipparcos data that was released in 1997, the parallax to the star was given as 39.72 which gave the calculated distance to Menkalinan as 82.12 light years away from Earth or 25.18 parsecs. It would take a spaceship travelling at the speed of light, 82.12 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 40.21 which put Menkalinan at a distance of 81.11 light years or 24.87 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.

The star's Galacto-Centric Distance is 7,424.00 Parsecs or 24,214.37 Light Years. The Galacto-Centric Distance is the distance from the star to the Centre of the Galaxy which is Sagittarius A*.

Variable Type of Menkalinan

The star is a eclipsing binary system Beta Persei (Algol) variable type which means that its size changes over time. The Variable Type is usually named after the first star of that type to be spotted. Menkalinan brightness ranges from a magnitude of 1.980 to a magnitude of 1.890 over its variable period. The smaller the magnitude, the brighter the star.

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 Metallicity and/or Mass is from the E.U. Exoplanets. The information was obtained as of 12th Feb 2017.

Menkalinan Facts

Alternative Names

Traditional/Proper NameMenkalinan
Flamsteed Name34 Aurigae
Flamsteed Short Name34 Aur
Short Namebet Aur
Arabic NameMankib Dhi-al-'Inan
English MeaningShoulder of the rein-holder
Bayer DesignationBeta Aurigae
Hipparcos Library I.D.28360
Yale Bright Star Catalogue (HR) Id2088
Bonner DurchmusterungBD+44 1328
Henry Draper Designation40183

Visual Facts

Star Typemain sequence dwarf star
Absolute Magnitude-0.11 / -0.08
Visual / Apparent Magnitude1.90
Naked Eye VisibleYes - Magnitudes
Right Ascension (R.A.)05h 59m 31.77
Declination (Dec.)+44d 56` 50.8
Galactic Latitude10.41 degrees
Galactic Longitude167.46 degrees
1997 Distance from Earth39.72 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 82.12 Light Years
 25.18 Parsecs
2007 Revised Distance from Earth40.21 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 81.11 Light Years
 24.87 Parsecs
Galacto-Centric Distance24,214.37 Light Years / 7,424.00 Parsecs
Proper Motion Dec.-0.95 ± 0.11 milliarcseconds/year
Proper Motion RA.-56.44 ± 0.23 milliarcseconds/year
B-V Index0.07
Radial Velocity-15.75 ± 0.62 km/s
Iron Abundance-0.11 ± 9.99 Fe/H
Semi-Major Axis-0.54
Orbital Period (Days)3.96
Argument Of Periastron0.00
Spectral TypeA2V
Brightest in Night Sky42nd
Colour(A) blue

Variable Star Details

Variable Star ClassEclipsing binary system
Variable Star TypeBeta Persei (Algol)
Variable Magnitude Range (Brighter - Dimmer)1.890 - 1.980

Estimated Facts

Luminosity (x the Sun)17.0000000
Calculated Effective Temperature8,718 Kelvin

Sources and Links

SIMBAD SourceLink

Related Stars

Multi-Star System

The star has been identified as being a multi-star system, one in which there is at least one star in close orbit to another star or two or more stars orbiting a central point. The stars may be of equal mass, unequal mass where one star is stronger than the other or be in groups orbiting a central point which doesn't necessarily have to be a star. More information can be found on my dedicated multiple star systems page. The source of the info is Simbad. The file is dated 2000 so any differences between this and any other source will be down to the actual source from where the information came from.

Proper Motion mas/yr
H.D. IdB.D. IdStar CodeMagnitudeR.A.Dec.SpectrumColourYear
40183+44 1328.0A2.10000-56.00000-1.00000A0White

Location of Menkalinan in Auriga

Menkalinan (Beta Aurigae) Location in Auriga

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

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