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Anchoring Starlight: Aldebaran

Aldebaran Field

Aldebaran is a big, ancient star, far larger than the Sun (see the image for a comparison of their sizes) and the brightest star in the constellation of Taurus, the Bull. At about 65 light years away it’s a comparatively close neighbour. Within the constellation of Taurus it appears as part of an open star cluster, the Hyades, but it’s actually much closer. It lies near the path followed by the Sun and the Moon as they cross the sky and is regularly occluded by the Moon as it passes in front of it. Aldebaran’s luminosity is considerably higher than that of the Sun, about 425 times as bright, while its surface temperature is a little less than the Sun’s. Over the next few million years it is expected that it will grow brighter yet.

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