Saturday, July 12, 2008


Star type
g F9-A5 IV-V

Distance from Earth
g 35.6 ly

Star Service No.
g NA

g 2.8 billion years

Radius/Mass/Temp (xSol)
g 166%; 125%; 6,140 K

Brightness (xSol)
g 351%

g [Fe/H] = 0.20

Comparison to Sol
g NA

Picture of star
g NA

Star system features
g This was the star Einstein used during the solar eclipse of Sept. 21, 1922, to determine the speed of light in space, as it fell close to the Sun.

Known planets
g Beta Virginis could host two or three jovian planets either [brown dwarfs] in wide orbits. Astronomers have set an upper limit of 1.9, 5 and 23 Jupiter masses for the putative planets with orbital periods of 15, 25 and 50 years respectively. However more recent studies have not confirmed the existence of any substellar companion around Beta Virginis yet. McDonald Observatory team has set limits to the presence of one or more planets with masses between 0.16 and 4.2 Jupiter masses and average separations spanning between 0.05 and 5.2 AUs.

Habitable zone
g The orbital distance where a planet currently would be "comfortable" for Earth-type carbon-based lifeforms with liquid water on the planetary surface in the so-called habitable zone is centered near 1.87 AU - between the orbital distances of Mars and the Main Asteroid Belt in the Solar System. At that distance from the star, such a planet would have an orbital period close to 2.3 Earth years (835 days). Life on an Earth-like planet, however, may have developed closer to the star before it evolved and began heating up out of the main sequence into a subgiant, thereby shifting its habitable zone outwards away from the star.

Orbital map
g NA

View from star
g NA

Nearby stars
(Star systems with 10 light years)
g NA

Map locating star system
g NA

Location in Earth sky
g In constellation Virgo ... Since it is close to the ecliptic, it can be occulted by the Moon and (very rarely) by planets. The next planetary occultation of Zavijava will take place on 11 August 2069 by Venus.

Other names
g Gl 449; Zavijah; Alaraph; Minelauva; 5 Virginis; HR 4540; BD +02°2489; HD 102870; SAO 119076; FK5 445; GC 16215; CCDM 11507+0146; HIP 57757; Beta Virginis; β Vir; β Virginis; Zavijava Aa; Bet Vir A

Sci-fi mentions
g Beta Virginis was the original destination of the Bussard scoopship Leonora Christine in Poul Anderson's Tau Zero.

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