Tuesday 19 September 2017 - 08:47:35 Posted by  Bobby

 Invention of Fornax

Fornax is an undistinguished constellation in an unremarkable area of the sky. It lies on the shores of the celestial river Eridanus and the southern border of Cetus. Invented in the 18th century by the French astronomer Nicolas Louis de Lacaille, it represents a chemical furnace.

 The Facts

  • Depiction: The Furnace
  • Pronounced: FOR-naks
  • Genitive: Fornacis
  • Abbreviation: For
  • Highest in the Sky: November to December
  • Size Ranking: 41st
  • Coverage Area: 398 Sq. Degrees
  • Right Acension: 3 hours
  • Declination: -30°
  • Visibility: 53°N to 90°S

 Notable Objects

  • Alpha Fornacis: Double star
  • Fornax Cluster: Galaxy cluster
  • NGC 1316: Lenticular galaxy
  • NGC 1360: Robin's Egg Nebula
  • NGC 1365: Barred spiral galaxy
  • NGC 1399: Elliptical galaxy
  • NGC 1404: Elliptical galaxy

 Best Viewed Objects/Stars

Alpha Fornacis

 The brightest star in the constellation, appearing to the naked eye as a single star of magnitude 3.8. A small telescope shows that it has a 7th-magnitude companion. The two stars form a true binary, orbiting each other every 300 years or so. They lie 46 light-years away from Earth.

Fornax Cluster

 A cluster of galaxies about 75 million light-years away, the brightest of which, notably NGC 1316 and NGC 1365, can be seen with a small telescope. NGC 1316 is a peculiar spiral, also known as radio source Fornax A. NGC 1365 is a barred spiral.


 Where to?

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