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Canopus From the Northern Limit of Visibility

By: Babak A. Tafreshi

 

Region: Middle East

Site: Alborz Mountains - Iran

Date: March 2007

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Prominent constellation Orion is in the middle top in this winter evening of Alborz Mountains, Iran. The Moon has illuminated the landscape while the valley is also lit by the light of its small villages. The south direction of the line connecting the three stars of Orion belt leads you to Sirius; the brightest star of the night sky. While its north direction reaches the V figure of Taurus, the Bull, at the upper right. But more interesting is a bright star right at the southern horizon, which looks like a tower light at the top of mountains. It is Canopus, the second brightest star of the night sky, which is not as dazzling in this image because it is visible through dimming atmospheric layers through the horizon. Click on the constellation icon above the image to see labels and guide lines. As explained by the photographer "Canopus is the Alpha star of the southern constellation Carina and from my photography latitude of 36-degree north, it only rise one degree above the horizon, so the southern horizon should be perfectly clear and transparent to see Canopus from the star northern limit of visibility. I was at a peak with over 2700 meters altitude in a crystal clear winter night." Babak Tafreshi

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