The Stargaze Thread *Sticky* -- Stars, Constellations, and The Night Sky.
A thread about stargazing, I'll be focusing on the Northern Hemisphere/Northern Celestial Dome. If someone can do a stargazing guide for the Southern Hemisphere that would be awesome.
Mirfak (Alpha Persei) ranks as the brightest star in the constellation Perseus, which represents a Hero in ancient skylore, but whose graceful shape always reminds me of someone dancing. Dancing Perseus also contains the sky’s most celebrated eclipsing binary star, Algol, sometimes called the Demon Star. Algol wins notoriety for its wild swings in brightness, which recur with clock-like precision. However, Mirfak is the easier of the two stars to find, and can serve as your guide star to Algol. Follow the links below to learn more about Mirfak, Perseus’ brightest star.
How to find Mirfak. The name Mirfak is derived from Arabic, meaning the Elbow of the Pleiades. In fact, the constellation Perseus lies due north of the Pleiades star cluster, also called the Seven Sisters. In other words, you can find Mirfak and Perseus in between the Pleiades cluster and Polaris, the North Star.
However, you can also take a more direct route to Mirfak, if you’re familiar with the M or W-shaped constellation Cassiopeia the Queen. Draw an imaginary line through the Cassiopeia stars Navi (Gamma Cassiopeiae) and Ruchbah to jump over to Mirfak. Mirfak is the one Perseus star to stand out in moderately light-polluted skies, as its brilliance matches that of the stars of the famous Big Dipper.
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**Operation Draconid Lonestar / Dulce Pleiades**