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Pi Virginis - HD104321 - HIP58590

Pi Virginis is a blue main sequence dwarf star that can be located in the constellation of Virgo. The star can be seen with the naked eye, that is, you don't need a telescope/binoculars to see it.

Pi Virginis is the Bayer Classification for the star. HIP58590 is the reference name for the star in the Hipparcos Star Catalogue. The Id of the star in the Henry Draper catalogue is HD104321. The Id of the star in the Gould Star Catalogue is 25. Stars in the southern hemisphere are more likely to have a Gould Id than the northern hemisphere. For example, there are no Gould classified stars in Ursa Major.

Pi Virginis has alternative name(s), 8 Virginis , 8 Vir.

Location of Pi Virginis

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 Pi Virginis, the location is 12h 00m 52.39 and +06d36`51.8 .

Proper Motion of Pi Virginis

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 -30.10 ± 0.20 miliarcseconds/year towards the north and 0.26 ± 0.39 miliarcseconds/year east if we saw them in the horizon.

Pi Virginis 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 11.0000000 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 Pi Virginis

Pi Virginis has a spectral type of A5V. This means the star is a blue main sequence dwarf star. The star is 7401.00000000 Parsecs from the Galactic Centre or terms of Light Years is 24139.3490894400000000s. The star has a B-V Colour Index of 0.12 which means the star's temperature has been calculated using information from Morgans @ Uni.edu at being 8,298 Kelvin.

Pi Virginis Radius has been calculated as being 5.79 times bigger than the Sun.The Sun's radius is 695,800km, therefore the star's radius is an estimated 4,031,310.69.km. However with the 2007 release of updated Hipparcos files, the radius is now calculated at being round 6.27. The figure is derived at by using the formula from SDSS and has been known to produce widely incorrect figures.

Pi Virginis Apparent and Absolute Magnitudes

Pi Virginis has an apparent magnitude of 4.65 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 -0.54 If you used the 2007 Parallax value, you would get an absolute magnitude of -0.71. 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 Pi Virginis

Using the original Hipparcos data that was released in 1997, the parallax to the star was given as 9.16 which gave the calculated distance to Pi Virginis as 356.07 light years away from Earth or 109.17 parsecs. It would take a spaceship travelling at the speed of light, 356.07 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 8.49 which put Pi Virginis at a distance of 384.17 light years or 117.79 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 7,401.00 Parsecs or 24,139.35 Light Years. The Galacto-Centric Distance is the distance from the star to the Centre of the Galaxy which is Sagittarius A*.

Meteor Showers Radiating from near Pi Virginis

The Pi Virginids Meteor Shower radiants from a point near this star. The meteor shower runs typically between February 13-April 8 with a peak date of Mar. 3-9.

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.

Pi Virginis Facts

Alternative Names

Short Name8 Vir
Bayer DesignationPi Virginis
Alternative Name(s)8 Virginis
Hipparcos Library I.D.58590
Bonner DurchmusterungBDD+07 2502
Gould I.D.25
Henry Draper Designation104321

Visual Facts

Star Typemain sequence dwarf star
Absolute Magnitude-0.54 / -0.71
Visual / Apparent Magnitude4.65
Naked Eye VisibleYes - Ref: Wiki
Right Ascension (R.A.)12h 00m 52.39
Declination (Dec.)+06d36`51.8
Galactic Latitude66.23 degrees
Galactic Longitude270.30 degrees
1997 Distance from Earth9.16 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 356.07 Light Years
 109.17 Parsecs
2007 Revised Distance from Earth8.49 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 384.17 Light Years
 117.79 Parsecs
Galacto-Centric Distance24,139.35 Light Years / 7,401.00 Parsecs
Proper Motion Dec.-30.10 ± 0.20 milliarcseconds/year
Proper Motion RA.0.26 ± 0.39 milliarcseconds/year
B-V Index0.12
Radial Velocity-10.40 ± 7.40 km/s
Eccentricity0.27
Inclination62.71
Semi-Major Axis3.55
Orbital Period (Days)282.69
Argument Of Periastron312.00
Spectral TypeA5V
Colour(A) blue

Estimated Facts

Luminosity (x the Sun)11.0000000
Calculated Effective Temperature8,298 Kelvin

Sources and Links

SIMBAD SourceLink

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