Is It Possible To Get To Alpha Centauri?

By  //  October 5, 2013

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Alpha Centauri B is located 4.6 light-years away

ABOVE VIDEO: Can we get to Alpha Centauri? Alpha Centauri is the brightest star in the southern constellation of Centaurus, and the third brightest star in the night sky. The system is located 1.34 parsecs or 4.37 light years from the Sun, making it the closest star system to the Solar System. Although it appears to the unaided eye as a single object, Alpha Centauri is actually a binary star system whose combined visual magnitude of −0.27 makes it the third brightest star (other than the Sun) seen from Earth after the −1.46 magnitude Sirius and the −0.72 magnitude Canopus. The Alpha Centauri AB binary is too close to be resolved by the naked eye, because the angular separation varies between 2 and 22 arcsec, but through much of the orbit, both are easily resolved in binoculars or small 5 cm (2 in) telescopes. In the southern hemisphere, Alpha Centauri forms the outer star of The Pointers or The Southern Pointers, so called because the line through Beta Centauri some 4.5° west, points directly to the constellation Crux — the Southern Cross. The Pointers easily distinguish the true Southern Cross from the fainter asterism known as the False Cross. So is it time to give interstellar travel a shot?

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