(brightest star in constellation Orion)
Rigel is the
lower left-hand star of Orion, i.e., foot of his right leg
(if he's facing us).
It is a quadruple star system, the brightest of
which is Rigel A, a blue-white supergiant
and Alpha Cygni variable (ACYG).
Rigel B is a spectroscopic binary system,
with two main-sequence blue-white B9 stars,
the pair about 2200 AU from Rigel A.
Rigel C is another similar star, which orbits the
Rigel B pair with 63 year period.
Rigel lights up some nearby nebulae.
Note that the determined characteristics depend upon an
accurate measure of the star's distance,
and determinations still vary.
Characteristics based upon one determination:
- spectroscopic binary.
- two B9 stars.
(star,binary star,bright star,variable star)
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Referenced by pages:
absolute magnitude (M)
B-type star (B)