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Rho Phoenicis, HD4919, HIP3949, HR242

Rho Phoenicis is a blue to white pulsating star that can be located in the constellation of Phoenix. The star can be seen with the naked eye, that is, you don't need a telescope/binoculars to see it. The star has an estimated age of 0.80 Billion of Years but could be as young as 0.70 to 0.90 according to Hipparcos.

Rho Phoenicis is the Bayer Classification for the star. The Id of the star in the Yale Bright Star Catalogue is HR242. HIP3949 is the reference name for the star in the Hipparcos Star Catalogue. The Id of the star in the Henry Draper catalogue is HD4919.

Rho Phoenicis has alternative name(s), rho Phe.

Location of Rho Phoenicis

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 Rho Phoenicis, the location is 00h 50m 41.13 and -50d 59` 12.9 .

Proper Motion of Rho Phoenicis

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 44.74 ± 0.15 miliarcseconds/year towards the north and 62.69 ± 0.21 miliarcseconds/year east if we saw them in the horizon. The Radial Velocity, that is the speed at which the star is moving away/towards us is 22.00000 km/s with an error of about 2.80 km/s .

Physical Properties (Colour, Temperature, Age, Radius) of Rho Phoenicis

Rho Phoenicis has a spectral type of F2III. This means the star is a blue to white star. The star is 7384.00000000 Parsecs from the Galactic Centre or terms of Light Years is 24083.9013209600000000s. The star has a B-V Colour Index of 0.3 which means the star's temperature has been calculated using information from Morgans @ Uni.edu at being 7,218 Kelvin.

Rho Phoenicis Radius has been calculated as being 4.09 times bigger than the Sun.The Sun's radius is 695,800km, therefore the star's radius is an estimated 2,848,039.61.km. However with the 2007 release of updated Hipparcos files, the radius is now calculated at being round 3.96. 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 0.35 with an error value of 9.99 Fe/H with the Sun has a value of 1 to put it into context.

The stars age according to Hipparcos data files put the star at an age of about 0.80 Billion years old but could be between 0.70 and 0.90 Billion years old. In comparison, the Sun's age is about 4.6 Billion Years Old.

Rho Phoenicis Apparent and Absolute Magnitudes

Rho Phoenicis has an apparent magnitude of 5.24 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 0.82 If you used the 2007 Parallax value, you would get an absolute magnitude of 0.89. 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 Rho Phoenicis

Using the original Hipparcos data that was released in 1997, the parallax to the star was given as 13.06 which gave the calculated distance to Rho Phoenicis as 249.74 light years away from Earth or 76.57 parsecs. It would take a spaceship travelling at the speed of light, 249.74 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 13.47 which put Rho Phoenicis at a distance of 242.14 light years or 74.24 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 7,384.00 Parsecs or 24,083.90 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 Rho Phoenicis

The star is a pulsating Delta Scuti 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. Rho Phoenicis brightness ranges from a magnitude of 5.344 to a magnitude of 5.299 over its variable period. The smaller the magnitude, the brighter the star. Its variable/pulsating period lasts for 0.1 days (variability).

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.

Rho Phoenicis Facts

Alternative Names

Short Namerho Phe
Bayer DesignationRho Phoenicis
Hipparcos Library I.D.3949
Yale Bright Star Catalogue (HR) Id242
Henry Draper Designation4919

Visual Facts

Star Type star
Age0.80 Billion Years Old
Age Range0.70 - 0.90 Billion Years Old
Absolute Magnitude0.82 / 0.89
Visual / Apparent Magnitude5.24
Naked Eye VisibleYes - Magnitudes
Right Ascension (R.A.)00h 50m 41.13
Declination (Dec.)-50d 59` 12.9
Galactic Latitude-66.14 degrees
Galactic Longitude303.22 degrees
1997 Distance from Earth13.06 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 249.74 Light Years
 76.57 Parsecs
2007 Revised Distance from Earth13.47 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 242.14 Light Years
 74.24 Parsecs
Galacto-Centric Distance24,083.90 Light Years / 7,384.00 Parsecs
Proper Motion Dec.44.74 ± 0.15 milliarcseconds/year
Proper Motion RA.62.69 ± 0.21 milliarcseconds/year
B-V Index0.30
Radial Velocity22.00 ± 2.80 km/s
Iron Abundance0.35 ± 9.99 Fe/H
Spectral TypeF2III
Colour(F) blue to white

Variable Star Details

Variable Star ClassPulsating
Variable Star TypeDelta Scuti
Mean Variability Period in Days0.120
Variable Magnitude Range (Brighter - Dimmer)5.299 - 5.344

Estimated Facts

Calculated Effective Temperature7,218 Kelvin

Sources and Links

SIMBAD SourceLink

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