Universe Guide

YZ Ceti

YZ Ceti Facts

  • YZ Ceti is a main sequence star that can be located in the constellation of Cetus. The description is based on the spectral class.
  • YZ Ceti is not part of the constellation outline but is within the borders of the constellation.
  • Based on the spectral type (M5.5Ve) of the star, the star's colour is red .
  • The star can not be seen by the naked eye, you need a telescope to see it.
  • YZ Ceti has at least 3 Extrasolar Planets believed to be in orbit around the star.
  • Using the most recent figures given by the 2007 Hipparcos data, the star is 12.04 light years away from us. Distance

YZ Ceti's Alternative Names

HIP5643 is the reference name for the star in the Hipparcos Star Catalogue. The Gliese ID of the star is GL 54.1. The star was part of the original catalogue devised by German Astronomer Wilheim Gliese of stars located within 20 parsecs of Earth. Star Names

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

Location of YZ Ceti

The location of the main sequence 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 YZ Ceti, the location is 01h 12m 29.90 and -17° 00` 01.9 .

Radial Velocity and Proper Motion of YZ Ceti

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 640.73 ± 5.00 milliarcseconds/year towards the north and 1,208.53 ± 8.36 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 28.09 km/s with an error of about 0.10 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 of YZ Ceti

YZ Ceti Temperature and Colour

Based on the star's spectral type of M5.5Ve , YZ Ceti's colour and type is red main sequence star. The star has a B-V Colour Index of 1.8 which means the star's temperature is about 2,942 Kelvin. The temperature was calculated using information from Morgans @ Uni.edu.

YZ Ceti Radius

YZ Ceti estimated radius has been calculated as being 0.05 times bigger than the Sun. The Sun's radius is 695,800km, therefore the star's radius is an estimated 35,315.28.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 0.05. The figure is derived at by using the formula from SDSS rather than peer reviewed papers. It has been known to produce widely incorrect figures.

YZ Ceti Apparent and Absolute Magnitudes

YZ Ceti has an apparent magnitude of 12.10 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 14.25 If you used the 2007 Parallax value, you would get an absolute magnitude of 14.26. 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 YZ Ceti

Using the original Hipparcos data that was released in 1997, the parallax to the star was given as 269.05 which gave the calculated distance to YZ Ceti as 12.12 light years away from Earth or 3.72 parsecs. If you want that in miles, it is about 71,248,939,522,985.35, based on 1 Ly = 5,878,625,373,183.61 miles.

In 2007, Hipparcos data was revised with a new parallax of 271.01 which put YZ Ceti at a distance of 12.04 light years or 3.69 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 761,111.83 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 7,401.00 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*.

Travel Time to YZ Ceti

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 A38073610,970,413.33
Speed of Sound (Mach 1)767.26910,523,329.12
Concorde (Mach 2)1,534.545,261,657.70
New Horizons Probe33,000244,673.46
Speed of Light670,616,629.0012.04

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 YZ Ceti Facts and Figures

Visual Facts

Primary / Proper / Traditional NameYZ Ceti
Alternative NamesHIP 5643, Gliese 54.1
Spectral TypeM5.5Ve
Constellation's Main StarNo
Multiple Star SystemNo / Unknown
Star Type Main Sequence Dwarf Star
GalaxyMilky Way
Absolute Magnitude 14.25 / 14.26
Visual / Apparent Magnitude12.10
Naked Eye VisibleRequires a 4.5 - 6 Inch Telescope - Magnitudes
Right Ascension (R.A.)01h 12m 29.90
Declination (Dec.)-17° 00` 01.9
Galactic Latitude-78.76 degrees
Galactic Longitude149.69 degrees
1997 Distance from Earth269.05 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 12.12 Light Years
 3.72 Parsecs
2007 Distance from Earth271.01 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 12.04 Light Years
 3.69 Parsecs
 761,111.83 Astronomical Units
Galacto-Centric Distance24,139.35 Light Years / 7,401.00 Parsecs
Proper Motion Dec.640.73 ± 5.00 milliarcseconds/year
Proper Motion RA.1208.53 ± 8.36 milliarcseconds/year
B-V Index1.80
Radial Velocity28.09 ± 0.10 km/s
Semi-Major Axis8602.00

Companions (Multi-Star and Exoplanets) Facts

Exoplanet Count3

Estimated Calculated Facts

Radius (x the Sun)0.05
Effective Temperature2,942 Kelvin

Sources and Links

SIMBAD SourceLink

List of Extrasolar Planets orbiting YZ Ceti

NameStatusMass (Jupiters)Orbital Period (Days)EccentricityDiscoveredSemi-Major AxisPeriastron
YZ Cet bConfirmed0.000411.9690.020170.01557
YZ Cet cConfirmed0.000443.0600.0420170.0209
YZ Cet dConfirmed0.000534.6560.12920170.02764

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