The Big Dipper

Yesterday was my day off and of course I had to see Finding Dory. Ok honest opinion here- I felt the plot was sort of weak and that Dory found her parents too “easily.” HOWEVER, I still enjoyed it and it made my inner child very happy. I still can’t get over how cute baby Dory is!! I even cried at one point which never happens to me with most movies. Yes that’s right, I, who did not cry during the Notebook, shed tears during Finding Dory. Weirdly enough, I find myself more empathetic/sympathetic towards animated characters than real actors! Anyways, my point is – it was a great way to spend the day.

By the time I got home, it was dark outside and the stars were out so naturally, I looked for constellations. As I was pointing out the Scorpius constellation to my sister, I ended up also finding the Big Dipper! No matter that I had to get up at 5 am for work the next day and it was already 11 pm. I was dressed and out with my camera and tripod in minutes and got this as a result:

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Can you find the Big Dipper?
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Fun fact: The Big Dipper is an asterism, meaning it is a grouping of stars that is not considered a constellation. It actually helps make up a constellation called Ursa Major, or the Great Bear

Another cool thing to point out that I just learned 5 minutes ago is the star that is 2nd from the end of the handle. Made up of actually two stars, Mizar and Alcor, it’s the first binary star system to have been discovered! This means that these two stars orbit around each other. Even cooler? Scientists have found that Mizar itself is made up of two binary star systems and Alcor has another star as well – totaling to 6 stars! These stars are located about 80 light years away. 1 light year is about 6 trillion miles and I’m going to leave it there haha. Like I keep saying, I feel so blessed to be able to see this view from Earth.

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Mizar and Alcor

Have you found any constellations? If you live somewhere else in the world, how do they look like to you? I would love to see your pictures.

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4 comments on “The Big Dipper

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