Star Names:

Antlia


Map of The Constellation of Antlia
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Antlia or the "Air Pump" is a small constellation in the southern hemisphere, named by French astronomer Abbé Nicolas Louis de Lacaille, who was the first to draw it in the 18th century. The constellation’s original name was Antlia pneumatica ("air pump"), commemorating French physicist Denis Papin’s invention of the device.

The Antlia constellation occupies an area of 239 square degrees and contains one star with known planets. It can be seen at latitudes between +45° and -90° and is best visible at 9 p.m. during the month of April.

Antlia has four main stars, none of them exceeding the magnitude of 3.5. The brightest star in the constellation is [180], alpha Antliae, a K-type orange giant 370 light-years distant from the Earth.

There are several other notable stars in Antlia. Zeta Antliae is a wide double star that can be easily spotted with binoculars. It lies near the border with the constellation Pyxis. [202], zeta-1 Antliae, is a binary star composed of two white A-type main sequence dwarfs, while [198], zeta-2 Antliae, is a white A-type subgiant.

[190], delta Antliae, is a triple star system, the primary component of which is a spectroscopic binary classified as a blue-white B-type main sequence dwarf.

[183], theta Antliae is a binary star composed of a white A-type main sequence dwarf and a yellow-white F-type bright giant, approximately 384 light-years distant from Earth.

[181], epsilon Antliae, and [182], iota Antliae, are orange K-type giants, while [184], eta Antliae, is another double star, approximately 106 light-years distant from Earth. Its primary component is a yellow-white F-type giant.

The Antlia constellation contains several deep sky objects. Spiral galaxy NGC 2997, sometimes referred to as ESO 434-G 35, appears like a nucleus in the midst of a chain of hot giant clouds and lies approximately 24.8 million light-years away from the constellation. NGC 3132, a bright planetary nebula, can be seen near the border with the Vela constellation . It appears as a misty elliptical disc and is a full magnitude brighter than the much better known Ring Nebula in the constellation Lyra. The Antlia Dwarf, discovered as recently as 1997, is a spheroidal dwarf galaxy 4.3 million light-years away from Earth.

Antlia belongs to the Lacaille family of constellations, along with Norma, Circinus, Telescopium, Microscopium, Sculptor, Fornax, Caelum, Horologium, Octans, Mensa, Reticulum and Pictor.

Constellations directly bordering Antlia are Hydra, Pyxis, Vela and Centaurus.


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