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WR 46, HD104994, HIP58954

Primary Facts on WR 46

  • WR 46's star type is wolf-rayet star that can be located in the constellation of Crux. The description is based on the spectral class.
  • WR 46 is not part of the constellation outline but is within the borders of the constellation.
  • The star can not be seen by the naked eye, you need a telescope to see it.
  • Using the most recent figures given by the 2007 Hipparcos data, the star is 1331.28 light years away from us.

WR 46's Alternative Names

HIP58954 is the reference name for the star in the Hipparcos Star Catalogue. The Id of the star in the Henry Draper catalogue is HD104994.

WR 46 has alternative name(s) :- , DI Cru.

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

Location of WR 46

The location of the 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 star is compared to the celestial equator and is expressed in degrees. For WR 46, the location is 12h 05m 18.73 and -62° 03` 10.1 .

Wolf-Rayet Star

The star is a Wolf-Rayet, a rare type of star of which not many are known. These stars are extremely luminous and large compared to our Sun. They live fast and die hard in a matter of millions not billions of years like our Sun. They exhaust their hydrogen supplies, turning to other gasses and expand outwards with massive solar winds, moving a step closer in the stellar evolution towards their death in a super or hypernova explosion.

Radial Velocity and Proper Motion of WR 46

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 1.84 ± 1.42 miliarcseconds/year towards the north and -5.44 ± 1.89 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 4.00 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 (Temperature) of WR 46

WR 46 has a spectral type of WN3p. The star has a B-V Colour Index of -0.03 which means the star's temperature has been calculated using information from Morgans @ Uni.edu at being 11,122 Kelvin.

WR 46 Radius has been calculated as being 1.05 times bigger than the Sun.The Sun's radius is 695,800km, therefore the star's radius is an estimated 729,463.21.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 0.70. The figure is derived at by using the formula from SDSS and has been known to produce widely incorrect figures.

WR 46 Apparent and Absolute Magnitudes

WR 46 has an apparent magnitude of 10.83 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 1.90 If you used the 2007 Parallax value, you would get an absolute magnitude of 2.78. 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 WR 46

Using the original Hipparcos data that was released in 1997, the parallax to the star was given as 1.64 which gave the calculated distance to WR 46 as 1988.80 light years away from Earth or 609.76 parsecs. It would take a spaceship travelling at the speed of light, 1988.80 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 2.45 which put WR 46 at a distance of 1331.28 light years or 408.16 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 84,188,456.68 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. WR 46 brightness ranges from a magnitude of 10.945 to a magnitude of 10.618 over its variable period. The smaller the magnitude, the brighter the star. Its variable/pulsating period lasts for 0.3 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.

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Additional WR 46 Facts and Figures

Visual Facts


Primary / Proper / Traditional NameWR 46
Alternative NamesHD 104994, HIP 58954, DI Cru, WR 46
Spectral TypeWN3p
Constellation's Main StarNo
Multiple Star SystemNo / Unknown
Star TypeWolf-Rayet star
GalaxyMilky Way
ConstellationCrux
Absolute Magnitude 1.90 / 2.78
Visual / Apparent Magnitude10.83
Naked Eye VisibleRequires a 4.5 - 6 Inch Telescope - Magnitudes
Right Ascension (R.A.)12h 05m 18.73
Declination (Dec.)-62° 03` 10.1
Galactic Latitude0.34 degrees
Galactic Longitude297.56 degrees
1997 Distance from Earth1.64 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 1988.80 Light Years
 609.76 Parsecs
2007 Distance from Earth2.45 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 1331.28 Light Years
 408.16 Parsecs
 84,188,456.68 Astronomical Units
Proper Motion Dec.1.84 ± 1.42 milliarcseconds/year
Proper Motion RA.-5.44 ± 1.89 milliarcseconds/year
B-V Index-0.03
Radial Velocity4.00 ± 999.00 km/s

Companions (Multi-Star and Exoplanets) Facts


Exoplanet CountNone/Unaware

Variable Star Details


Mean Variability Period in Days0.271
Variable Magnitude Range (Brighter - Dimmer)10.618 - 10.945

Estimated Facts


Calculated Effective Temperature11,122 Kelvin

Sources and Links


SIMBAD SourceLink

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