Universe Guide

Zeta Horologii

Zeta Horologii Facts

  • Zeta Horologii is a subgiant star that can be located in the constellation of Horologium. The description is based on the spectral class.
  • Zeta Horologii is a main star of the constellation outline.
  • Based on the spectral type (F4IV) of the star, the star's colour is yellow to white .
  • 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 1.40 Billion of Years but could be as young as 1.30 to 1.50 according to Hipparcos.
  • Using the most recent figures given by the 2007 Hipparcos data, the star is 160.12 light years away from us. Distance

Zeta Horologii's Alternative Names

Zeta Horologii (Zet Hor) 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 HR802. HIP12484 is the reference name for the star in the Hipparcos Star Catalogue. The Id of the star in the Henry Draper catalogue is HD16920.

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

Location of Zeta Horologii

The location of the subgiant 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 Zeta Horologii, the location is 02h 40m 39.58 and -54° 32` 59.7 .

Radial Velocity and Proper Motion of Zeta Horologii

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 4.96 ± 0.19 milliarcseconds/year towards the north and 32.86 ± 0.21 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 3.20000 km/s with an error of about 3.20 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 Zeta Horologii

Zeta Horologii Temperature and Colour

Based on the star's spectral type of F4IV , Zeta Horologii's colour and type is yellow to white subgiant star. The star has a B-V Colour Index of 0.41 which means the star's temperature is about 6,681 Kelvin. The temperature was calculated using information from Morgans @ Uni.edu.

Zeta Horologii 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 16.70 that I have given is based on the value in the Simbad Hipparcos Extended Catalogue at the University of Strasbourg from 2012.

Zeta Horologii Radius

Zeta Horologii estimated radius has been calculated as being 3.08 times bigger than the Sun. The Sun's radius is 695,800km, therefore the star's radius is an estimated 2,146,285.59.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 3.0988687571001647876570610628. 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.

Zeta Horologii Iron Abundance

Zeta Horologii Iron Abundance is -0.09 with an error value of 0.08 Fe/H with the Sun has a value of 1 to put it into context. The value comes from the Hipparcos Extended Catalog.

Zeta Horologii Estimated Age

The stars age according to Hipparcos data files put the star at an age of about 1.40 Billion years old but could be between 1.30 and 1.50 Billion years old. In comparison, the Sun's age is about 4.6 Billion Years Old.

Zeta Horologii Apparent and Absolute Magnitudes

Zeta Horologii has an apparent magnitude of 5.21 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 1.77 If you used the 2007 Parallax value, you would get an absolute magnitude of 1.76. 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 Zeta Horologii

Using the original Hipparcos data that was released in 1997, the parallax to the star was given as 20.49000 which gave the calculated distance to Zeta Horologii as 159.18 light years away from Earth or 48.80 parsecs. If you want that in miles, it is about 935,759,586,903,367.04, based on 1 Ly = 5,878,625,373,183.61 miles.

In 2007, Hipparcos data was revised with a new parallax of 20.37000 which put Zeta Horologii at a distance of 160.12 light years or 49.09 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 10,125,468.78 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 7,398.00 Parsecs or 24,129.56 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 Zeta Horologii

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 A380736145,895,563.36
Speed of Sound (Mach 1)767.269139,949,788.97
Concorde (Mach 2)1,534.5469,974,803.29
New Horizons Probe33,0003,253,913.17
Speed of Light670,616,629.00160.12

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 Zeta Horologii Facts and Figures

Visual Facts

Primary / Proper / Traditional NameZeta Horologii
Alternative NamesZet Hor, HD 16920, HIP 12484, HR 802
Spectral TypeF4IV
Constellation's Main StarYes
Multiple Star SystemNo / Unknown
Star TypeSubgiant Star
ColourYellow - White
GalaxyMilky Way
Age1.40 Billion Years Old
Age Range1.30 - 1.50 Billion Years Old
Absolute Magnitude 1.77 / 1.76
Visual / Apparent Magnitude5.21
Naked Eye VisibleYes - Magnitudes
Right Ascension (R.A.)02h 40m 39.58
Declination (Dec.)-54° 32` 59.7
Galactic Latitude-56.11152047 degrees
Galactic Longitude274.43083635 degrees
1997 Distance from Earth20.49000 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 159.18 Light Years
 48.80 Parsecs
2007 Distance from Earth20.37000 Parallax (milliarcseconds)
 160.12 Light Years
 49.09 Parsecs
 10,125,468.78 Astronomical Units
Galacto-Centric Distance24,129.56 Light Years / 7,398.00 Parsecs
Proper Motion Dec.4.96000 ± 0.19000 milliarcseconds/year
Proper Motion RA.32.86000 ± 0.21000 milliarcseconds/year
B-V Index0.41
Radial Velocity3.20000 ± 3.20 km/s
Iron Abundance-0.0900 ± 0.08 Fe/H
Semi-Major Axis8038.0000000
Stellar Luminosity (Lsun)16.7000000

Companions (Multi-Star and Exoplanets) Facts

Exoplanet CountNone/Unaware

Estimated Calculated Facts

Radius (x the Sun)3.10
Effective Temperature6,681 Kelvin

Sources and Links

SIMBAD SourceLink

Horologium Main Stars

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