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North Star Closer to Earth Than Thought
Nat Geo ^ | December 4, 2012 | Andrew Fazekas

Posted on 12/09/2012 1:56:24 PM PST by BenLurkin

In fact, the North Star—also called Polaris—is 30 percent closer to our solar system than previously thought, at about 323 light-years away, according to an international team who studied the star's light output.

Using Russia's 6-Meter Telescope, the researchers were able to calculate the North Star's distance from our solar system by analyzing its spectrum of light and obtaining data on its temperature and changes in intrinsic brightness over time.

That significantly revises the previously accepted value of 434 light-years, which was obtained by the European star-mapping satellite Hipparcos in the 1990s.

Known to fade and brighten over a four-day period, this celestial beacon of true north is considered the closest and brightest member of a class of stars called Cepheids that change in brightness over time.

The new results also located nearly a half dozen stars that appear to be surrounding the North Star and show signs that they have all once belonged to the same star cluster, which has now dispersed.

"This system is known to contain two other stars in addition to the Cepheid stars, but there may be yet another unseen object orbiting Polaris ... a massive orbiting planet for example," he added.

(Excerpt) Read more at news.nationalgeographic.com ...


TOPICS: Science
KEYWORDS: xplanets

1 posted on 12/09/2012 1:56:32 PM PST by BenLurkin
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To: BenLurkin

I thought it looked closer than 434 light-years away.
:~ )


2 posted on 12/09/2012 1:58:35 PM PST by nuconvert ( Khomeini promised change too // Hail, Chairman O)
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To: BenLurkin

No wonder I get lost all the time. I’ve been correcting for 434 light-years of parallax, not 323 light-years.


3 posted on 12/09/2012 2:02:14 PM PST by ProtectOurFreedom
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To: BenLurkin

(clickable)
4 posted on 12/09/2012 2:05:27 PM PST by NonValueAdded (If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs, you've likely misread the situation.)
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To: BenLurkin
Scientists can change things anytime they want. They learn more, they adjust the theory, they move on. It's no big deal -- this is how science is done.

But if anyone else comes along and asks a question, it's -- "Hey, you moron! This is settled science! This is beyond dispute! Don't tell me what you believe -- I've got facts!"

That is, until they find new facts and have to change the science again. But it's OK. That's how science is done.

5 posted on 12/09/2012 2:18:01 PM PST by ClearCase_guy (Republicans have made themselves useless, toothless, and clueless.)
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To: ClearCase_guy

Disgusting ain’t it ?


6 posted on 12/09/2012 2:31:21 PM PST by gusopol3
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To: ClearCase_guy
The new discovery of a closer North Star is "most unexpected for what is considered to be one of the Hipparcos satellite's most solid results," said study leader David Turner

How much did that satellite cost? How could it have made an error that large? What else did it measure wrong?

7 posted on 12/09/2012 2:32:38 PM PST by SC Swamp Fox (Aim small, miss small.)
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To: BenLurkin

If it blew up today, would we see it in our lifetime?


8 posted on 12/09/2012 2:33:36 PM PST by Obama_Is_Sabotaging_America (IMPEACH OBAMA)
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To: nuconvert

Yeah, but how far away is Nibiru now (Planet-X) ??!

TEOTW is just days away....


9 posted on 12/09/2012 2:37:07 PM PST by mikrofon (Mayan not be true.)
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To: SC Swamp Fox

A mathmatical error or it’s racing toward the blue marble. The sky is falling and the Mayans were right, oh no!


10 posted on 12/09/2012 2:46:46 PM PST by bgill (We've passed the point of no return. Welcome to Al Amerika.)
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To: ProtectOurFreedom

“I’ve been correcting for 434 light-years of parallax, not 323 light-years.”

Annual or diurnal?


11 posted on 12/09/2012 2:47:22 PM PST by Born to Conserve
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To: BenLurkin

Crap. Now I have to readjust my whole life.


12 posted on 12/09/2012 3:01:28 PM PST by Doomonyou (Let them eat Lead.)
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To: BenLurkin
Just goes to show that sometimes it doesn't pay to cut corners. The Europeans thought that they could save a bit of money by dropping the second H in Hipparchos and calling the satellite Hipparcos, but as a result they got less reliable information.

On the other hand, the fact this comes from a Russian source makes me a bit suspicious. If the light from Polaris is 323 years old, it started on its way here in the year 1689--the first year of the reign of Peter the Great. If Polaris is 434 light-years away, on the other hand, the light started on its way here in 1578, a year when the Russians were defeated by the Swedes.

May be some Russian chauvinism involved.

13 posted on 12/09/2012 3:08:30 PM PST by Verginius Rufus
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To: BenLurkin
Now there's a difference that makes a difference...
14 posted on 12/09/2012 3:37:05 PM PST by hinckley buzzard
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To: Obama_Is_Sabotaging_America
If it blew up today, would we see it in our lifetime?

Well, if you are alive 323 years from today, yep, you would see it.

15 posted on 12/09/2012 3:37:10 PM PST by calex59
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To: Obama_Is_Sabotaging_America

Better eat your oatmeal.


16 posted on 12/09/2012 3:43:51 PM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both)
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To: ProtectOurFreedom

Did you adjust for Starlight Savings Time?


17 posted on 12/09/2012 3:55:06 PM PST by TrueKnightGalahad
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To: BenLurkin

OMG!!!! WE'RE DOOOOOOOOOOOMED!!!!


18 posted on 12/09/2012 3:59:26 PM PST by left that other site (Worry is the Darkroom that Develops Negatives.)
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To: BenLurkin

According to my calculations it is 347 light years away.


19 posted on 12/09/2012 4:02:42 PM PST by layman (Card Carrying Infidel)
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To: left that other site; al baby

lol.

Pass out the plastic BRD catching bags


20 posted on 12/09/2012 4:10:29 PM PST by GeronL (http://asspos.blogspot.com)
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To: BenLurkin

434 downsized to 323?

Hmmm....

This could all be due to deflation, where even our money ain’t worth what it used to be some 10 years ago.

On the positive side, a savings of 30% would mean that, the amount of fuel (and cost) to get to Polaris, would be a lot less.

Also, what else could be the scientists be wrong about? Is it possible that, even the universe is 30% smaller than the current estimates?


21 posted on 12/09/2012 4:21:15 PM PST by adorno (Y)
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To: adorno
All I know is that it's best to never take any scientific pronouncements too seriously.
22 posted on 12/09/2012 4:22:38 PM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both)
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To: BenLurkin
All I know is that it's best to never take any scientific pronouncements too seriously.

Except for global warming pronouncements; otherwise, you risk the chance of being called a "denier", and you for certain don't want to go through life being scarred that way.
23 posted on 12/09/2012 4:35:55 PM PST by adorno (Y)
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To: BenLurkin

No wonder the polar ice cap is melting.......


24 posted on 12/09/2012 5:20:52 PM PST by Red Badger (Lincoln freed the slaves. Obama just got them ALL back......................)
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To: layman
According to my calculations it is 347 light years away.

347 light years, 42 miles, 9 feet, and 3/4 inches, to be precise. I double checked it.


25 posted on 12/09/2012 5:31:18 PM PST by Flick Lives (We're going to be just like the old Soviet Union, but with free cell phones!)
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To: Flick Lives

Haven't seen one of those in awhile!

26 posted on 12/09/2012 6:04:02 PM PST by BwanaNdege (Man has often lost his way, but modern man has lost his address - Gilbert K. Chesterton)
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To: Red Badger

http://www.johnspeedie.com/healy/heyho.wav


27 posted on 12/09/2012 6:13:03 PM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both)
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To: layman
Of course the 323 figure is in Roman years. If they were using the Islamic calendar (expect NASA to adopt that any day now to show respect for Muslim contributions to science), it would be about 3% more so something like 333 light-years (since their year is 11 days shorter than the solar year).

Of course if we were to use Martian years it would be a lot less since the Martian year is 1.88 of our years (687 days). Mars is tilted 25 degrees but I don't know which star would be the North Star on Mars--chances are it is not Polaris. So the Martians probably could care less how far away Polaris is. Anyway they must be hiding way under the surface since our spaceships have yet to find them.

28 posted on 12/09/2012 6:43:39 PM PST by Verginius Rufus
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To: KevinDavis; annie laurie; Knitting A Conundrum; Viking2002; Ernest_at_the_Beach; Mmogamer; ...

Thanks BenLurkin.
 
X-Planets
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Google news searches: exoplanet · exosolar · extrasolar ·

29 posted on 12/15/2012 6:36:08 PM PST by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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