May 27, 2024

Taylor Daily Press

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You can see this close group of stars with the naked eye tonight

You can see this close group of stars with the naked eye tonight

You don't always need a telescope to enjoy the dark, starry sky. Various star clusters can be seen with the naked eye, such as the Pleiades (seven stars), Praecipe (Beehive, M44) and the so-called Hyades.

Is there little light pollution in your area? Then at night you can see the ten brightest stars in the Hyades chain with the naked eye. The Hyades can be found in the constellation Taurus, which also includes the Pleiades. It is the closest star cluster. The group of 200 stars is located 153 light-years from Earth and has a mass of 400 solar masses.

Want to discover the Hyades? Then first look for the brightest star in the constellation: Aldebaran. This star is located between the Pleiades and Orion and is the red eye of the fierce bull. Fun fact: Although Aldebaran appears to be part of the Hyades, the star is not part of this group. Aldebaran is located just 66 light-years from Earth, making it much closer to Earth than most members of the group.

The image of the Hyades below was taken by astrophotographer Jose Matanos. It's this week's satellite image. The brightest yellow star is Aldebaran. Blue stars are members of the stellar group. The Hyades are spread over an area estimated at about fifteen light-years.

The Pioneer 10 spacecraft is on its way to Aldebran and the Hyades. The speed of the spacecraft is 12 kilometers per second. In two million years, this space probe will reach the brightest star, Taurus. In 5 million years, the spacecraft will fly through the Hyades.

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Do you know what's strange about Hades? The 600 million year old star cluster appears to be collapsing. Researchers believe this is due to dark matter. Scientists assume that these invisible molecular clouds are remnants of the formation of the Milky Way Galaxy. They form an invisible mass, but exert a noticeable gravitational influence on anything that comes too close to them. There may also be many black holes in the Hyades. If true, this is a new record. Black holes have never been found so close to Earth before.

In recent decades, space telescopes and satellites have captured beautiful images of nebulae, galaxies, stellar nurseries, and planets. Every weekend, we take a cool space photo from the archives. Enjoy all the pictures? See them on this page.