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The star Sirius rings within the New Year

You can at all times acknowledge the star Sirius. It’s the brightest star within the sky. And the three distinguished Belt stars within the easy-to-see constellation Orion the Hunter level to it.

Want to entertain your folks on New Year’s Eve? Give them a fast tour of the heavens, and present them Sirius, the brightest star within the sky. It has the nickname the Dog Star, as a result of it’s a part of the constellation Canis Major the Greater Dog. Sirius may also be known as the New Year’s star. It’ll ring in 2022 by reaching its highest level within the sky across the stroke of midnight. That’s true for each New Year’s Eve.

Orion over Gir National Park in India.
View at EarthSky Community Photos. | Nikunj Rawal in Gir National Park, India, captured this picture of Orion on November 21, 2020. Note the brightest star on the backside, Sirius. Thank you, Nikunj!

How to search out the star Sirius

How can you discover Sirius? Well, for starters, it’s the brightest star in Earth’s evening sky. Its identify means glowing or scorching.

The solely factors of sunshine that may shine brighter than Sirius are a few of the planets. If you’re scanning the darkish sky and aren’t positive which level of sunshine is Sirius, right here’s a sure-fire strategy to know. Look for the distinguished Belt stars of the constellation Orion. Orion’s Belt at all times factors to Sirius.

Night sky with prominent Orion and bright Sirius to lower left.
This picture comes from EarthSky Facebook buddy Susan Jensen in Odessa, Washington. See the way it matches the chart above, with the three stars of Orion’s Belt pointing to Sirius?

Sirius is up late for the occasion

So Sirius is highest within the sky at midnight each New Year’s. Astronomers name this a midnight end result of Sirius. As the New Year rings in, Sirius is at its highest.

By midnight, by the best way, we imply the nighttime, that’s, halfway between sundown and dawn. Like the sun, the celebs rise within the east and journey westward throughout the sky. When the sun or any star is within the japanese half of the sky, it’s climbing upward. When the sun or any star is within the western sky, it’s descending downward. Midway between rising and setting, the sun or any star reaches its highest level within the sky.

Because the celebs rise and set two hours earlier with every passing month, Sirius will probably be highest up for the evening round 10 p.m. native time on February 1.

House with porch lights and trees with one bright star in night sky above.
Brightest star Sirius at nightfall on December 27, 2018, by way of Peter Lowenstein in Mutare, Zimbabwe. Around New Year’s, the star may be discovered within the japanese half of the sky within the night, highest round midnight, and within the western half of the sky between midnight and daybreak.
Space station components above with night sky over orbital view of curve of Earth.
View larger. | Sirius from space. It’s the brightest star on this picture, the bluish one, to the best within the picture. The 3 Belt stars of Orion – buried within the haze alongside Earth’s horizon – are nonetheless pointing to it. Image by way of NASA.

Bottom line: Look for the star Sirius at midnight end result – highest within the sky round midnight, or halfway between sundown and dawn – each New Year’s Eve.

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