Universe GuideSearchTwitterComments

VX Aurigae

VX Aurigae Facts

VX Aurigae's Alternative Names

HIP36314 is the reference name for the star in the Hipparcos Star Catalogue.

VX Aurigae has alternative name(s) :- VX Aur, VX Aur.

BD number is the number that the star was filed under in the Durchmusterung or Bonner Durchmusterung, a star catalogue that was put together by the Bonn Observatory between 1859 to 1903. The star's BD Number is BD+41 1660.

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

Location of VX Aurigae

The location of the variable 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 VX Aurigae, the location is 07h 28m 30.49 and +40° 58` 13.4 .

Radial Velocity and Proper Motion of VX Aurigae

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 -4.10 ± 1.45 miliarcseconds/year towards the north and -9.84 ± 2.32 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 the Sun is 24.00 km/s with an error of about 999.00 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.

Physical Properties (Colour, Temperature) of VX Aurigae

VX Aurigae has a spectral type of M4e-M6. This means the star is a red variable star. The star has a B-V Colour Index of 1.01 which means the star's temperature has been calculated using information from Morgans @ Uni.edu at being 4,951 Kelvin.

VX Aurigae Radius has been calculated as being 29.35 times bigger than the Sun.The Sun's radius is 695,800km, therefore the star's radius is an estimated 20,418,312.46.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 6.75. The figure is derived at by using the formula from SDSS and has been known to produce widely incorrect figures.

VX Aurigae Apparent and Absolute Magnitudes

VX Aurigae has an apparent magnitude of 9.69 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 -1.82 If you used the 2007 Parallax value, you would get an absolute magnitude of 1.37. 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 VX Aurigae

Using the original Hipparcos data that was released in 1997, the parallax to the star was given as 0.50 which gave the calculated distance to VX Aurigae as 6523.27 light years away from Earth or 2000 parsecs. It would take a spaceship travelling at the speed of light, 6523.27 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 2.17 which put VX Aurigae at a distance of 1503.06 light years or 460.83 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 95,052,348.33 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.

Variable Type of VX Aurigae

The star is a pulsating Omicron Ceti 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. VX Aurigae brightness ranges from a magnitude of 11.127 to a magnitude of 8.055 over its variable period. The smaller the magnitude, the brighter the star. Its variable/pulsating period lasts for 323.0 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.

Hide Explanations
Show GridLines

Additional VX Aurigae Facts and Figures

Visual Facts

Primary / Proper / Traditional NameVX Aurigae
Alternative NamesVX Aur, HIP 36314, BD+41 1660, VX Aur
Spectral TypeM4e-M6
Constellation's Main StarNo
Multiple Star SystemNo / Unknown
Star TypeVariable Star
GalaxyMilky Way
Absolute Magnitude -1.82 / 1.37
Visual / Apparent Magnitude9.69
Naked Eye VisibleRequires a 7x50 Binoculars - Magnitudes
Right Ascension (R.A.)07h 28m 30.49
Declination (Dec.)+40° 58` 13.4
Galactic Latitude24.03 degrees
Galactic Longitude177.61 degrees
1997 Distance from Earth0.50 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 6523.27 Light Years
 2000 Parsecs
2007 Distance from Earth2.17 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 1503.06 Light Years
 460.83 Parsecs
 95,052,348.33 Astronomical Units
Proper Motion Dec.-4.10 ± 1.45 milliarcseconds/year
Proper Motion RA.-9.84 ± 2.32 milliarcseconds/year
B-V Index1.01
Radial Velocity24.00 ± 999.00 km/s

Companions (Multi-Star and Exoplanets) Facts

Exoplanet CountNone/Unaware

Variable Star Details

Variable Star ClassPulsating
Variable Star TypeOmicron Ceti
Mean Variability Period in Days323.000
Variable Magnitude Range (Brighter - Dimmer)8.055 - 11.127

Estimated Calculated Facts

Radius (x the Sun)6.75
Effective Temperature4,951 Kelvin

Sources and Links

SIMBAD SourceLink

Related Stars

Comments and Questions

There's no register feature and no need to give an email address if you don't need to. All messages will be reviewed before being displayed. Comments may be merged or altered slightly such as if an email address is given in the main body of the comment.

This website is using cookies. More info. That's Fine