You Are Here

Ever wonder what the Sun might look like from the skies of another world?

This is an imaginary view from Upsilon Andromedae (…kind of — strictly speaking Upsilon Andromedae is probably a few degrees up and to the right from where this view is being seen). The bright stars near the top are Procyon and Sirius, the yellow stars near the centre are Alpha Centauri and The Sun (Alpha Centauri has Proxima sitting virtually on top of it). Dotted about are various red dwarfs like Wolf 359, UV Ceti and Barnard. The orange star in the upper left is Epsilon Eridani. All distances are more or less as they would appear in the sky.

Humbling, isn’t it?

Upsilon Andromedae is a binary; a young yellow sun-like star and a red dwarf. about 44 light years away, it’s a system with three known exoplanets in eccentric orbits. This star system was formerly ranked 21st in the top 100 stars in NASA’s Terrestrial Planet Finder mission (before the mission was cancelled, that is). Pity really… It’s a system I’d like to know more about…

About Invader Xan

Molecular astrophysicist, usually found writing frenziedly, staring at the sky, or drinking mojitos.
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7 Responses to You Are Here

  1. invaderxan says:

    I’m actually pretty sure it is Proxima, and no it probably wouldn’t be so optically bright (given it wasn’t discovered till 1915). Though I suspect it’s actually an optical illusion caused by the way I’ve created this image.
    I included at least 16 red dwarfs in this image, including Proxima. Proxima’s just more noticeable because it’s highlighted by Alpha Cen. Plus, it gives some dramatic effect. ;)
    Nicely pointed out!:)

  2. Anonymous says:

    oh wait, it’s me again … it’s probably alpha cen b right?

  3. Anonymous says:

    sorry to be such a scientist but … do you think proxima is that bright compared to alpha cen a?

  4. invaderxan says:

    Even more so — From around 400-500 light years away (I forget the exact distance), The Sun would be barely visible against all the other stars in the background…

  5. invaderxan says:

    Re: fascinating !
    Glad you liked it, cheers! :)

  6. Anonymous says:

    fascinating !
    Interesting post !! very well said. found your name in a comment on Bad Astronomy . And checked out your site .
    Starr Astronomer of :
    http://asktheastronomer.blogspot.com

  7. Humbling is definitely the way to put it.
    Our sun looks so tiny and insignificant out there in that massive sea of stars.

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