Universe Guide

Sigma Columbae

Sigma Columbae Facts

Sigma Columbae's Alternative Names

Sigma Columbae (Sig Col) is the Bayer Classification for the star. The Bayer Classification was created by Johann Bayer in 1603. The brightest star in the constellation is normally given the Alpha designation, there are exceptions such as Pollux which is Beta Geminorum.

The Id of the star in the Yale Bright Star Catalogue is HR2092. HIP28098 is the reference name for the star in the Hipparcos Star Catalogue. The Id of the star in the Henry Draper catalogue is HD40248.

More details on objects' alternative names can be found at Star Names .

Location of Sigma Columbae

The location of the giant star in the night sky 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 object is compared to the celestial equator and is expressed in degrees. For Sigma Columbae, the location is 05h 56m 20.94 and -31° 22` 56.8 .

Radial Velocity and Proper Motion of Sigma Columbae

Proper Motion

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 6.04 ± 0.19 milliarcseconds/year towards the north and 0.08 ± 0.24 milliarcseconds/year east if we saw them in the horizon.

Radial Velocity

The Radial Velocity, that is the speed at which the star is moving away/towards the Sun is 19.40 km/s with an error of about 2.90 km/s . When the value is negative then the star and the Sun are getting closer to one another, likewise, a positive number means that two stars are moving away. Its nothing to fear as the stars are so far apart, they won't collide in our life-time, if ever.

Sigma Columbae 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 1,300.17 that I have given is based on the value in the Simbad Hipparcos Extended Catalogue at the University of Strasbourg from 2012.

Physical Properties (Colour, Temperature) of Sigma Columbae

Sigma Columbae Colour and Temperature

Sigma Columbae has a spectral type of F2III. This means the star is a yellow to white giant star. The star has a B-V Colour Index of 0.38 which means the star's temperature is about 6,822 Kelvin. The temperature was calculated using information from Morgans @ Uni.edu at being .

Sigma Columbae Radius

Radius has been calculated as being 23.61 times bigger than the Sun. The Sun's radius is 695,800km, therefore the star's radius is an estimated 16,428,249.88.km. If you need the diameter of the star, you just need to multiple the radius by 2. However with the 2007 release of updated Hipparcos files, the radius is now calculated at being round 26.86. The figure is derived at by using the formula from SDSS and has been known to produce widely incorrect figures.

Sigma Columbae Apparent and Absolute Magnitudes

Sigma Columbae has an apparent magnitude of 5.52 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 -2.74 If you used the 2007 Parallax value, you would get an absolute magnitude of -3.02. 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 Sigma Columbae

Using the original Hipparcos data that was released in 1997, the parallax to the star was given as 2.23 which gave the calculated distance to Sigma Columbae as 1462.62 light years away from Earth or 448.43 parsecs. If you want that in miles, it is 980,857,293,908.

In 2007, Hipparcos data was revised with a new parallax of 1.96 which put Sigma Columbae at a distance of 1664.10 light years or 510.20 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.

Using the 2007 distance, the star is roughly 105,235,570.86 Astronomical Units from the Earth/Sun give or take a few. An Astronomical Unit is the distance between Earth and the Sun. The number of A.U. is the number of times that the star is from the Earth compared to the Sun.

The star's Galacto-Centric Distance is 7,660.00 Parsecs or 24,984.11 Light Years. The Galacto-Centric Distance is the distance from the star to the Centre of the Galaxy which is Sagittarius A*.

Travel Time to Sigma Columbae

The time it will take to travel to this star is dependent on how fast you are going. U.G. has done some calculations as to how long it will take going at differing speeds. A note about the calculations, when I'm talking about years, I'm talking non-leap years only (365 days).

The New Horizons space probe is the fastest probe that we've sent into space at the time of writing. Its primary mission was to visit Pluto which at the time of launch (2006), Pluto was still a planet.

DescriptionSpeed (m.p.h.)Time (years)
Airbus A3807361,516,267,842.82
Speed of Sound (Mach 1)767.2691,454,474,418.12
Concorde (Mach 2)1,534.54727,236,261.24
New Horizons Probe33,00033,817,367.65
Speed of Light670,616,629.001,664.10

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.

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Additional Sigma Columbae Facts and Figures

Visual Facts

Primary / Proper / Traditional NameSigma Columbae
Alternative NamesSig Col, HD 40248, HIP 28098, HR 2092
Spectral TypeF2III
Constellation's Main StarNo
Multiple Star SystemNo / Unknown
Star TypeGiant Star
ColourYellow - White
GalaxyMilky Way
Absolute Magnitude -2.74 / -3.02
Visual / Apparent Magnitude5.52
Naked Eye VisibleYes - Magnitudes
Right Ascension (R.A.)05h 56m 20.94
Declination (Dec.)-31° 22` 56.8
Galactic Latitude-24.73 degrees
Galactic Longitude237.03 degrees
1997 Distance from Earth2.23 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 1462.62 Light Years
 448.43 Parsecs
2007 Distance from Earth1.96 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 1664.10 Light Years
 510.20 Parsecs
 105,235,570.86 Astronomical Units
Galacto-Centric Distance24,984.11 Light Years / 7,660.00 Parsecs
Proper Motion Dec.6.04 ± 0.19 milliarcseconds/year
Proper Motion RA.0.08 ± 0.24 milliarcseconds/year
B-V Index0.38
Radial Velocity19.40 ± 2.90 km/s
Semi-Major Axis8402.00
Stellar Luminosity (Lsun)1,300.17

Companions (Multi-Star and Exoplanets) Facts

Exoplanet CountNone/Unaware

Estimated Calculated Facts

Radius (x the Sun)26.86
Effective Temperature6,822 Kelvin

Sources and Links

SIMBAD SourceLink

Related Stars

Comments and Questions

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