Astronomy is looking Up!

Astronomy is one of the most ancient sciences in the world. Our ancestors had the advantage of clear skies without light/smoke pollution and observing the night sky was something which fascinated them.

They observed and noted down the celestial objects and grouped them into Constellations. Trying to find what stars and planets are, where they came from, where they were headed were topics of great interest as the answers to these questions will explain how the Earth came into existence and, if this Earth of ours will remain forever.

Now, let's shift our focus to the object of interest for this month:

Big Dipper

The Big Dipper is a group of 7 stars, easily recognizable in the night sky. It has been used as a celestial tool to predict the future, as a navigational tool, and, beleive it or not, to determine the eyesight quality of a person as well!

Big Dipper

These seven stars form part of the Ursa Major (Great Bear) constellation. The Big Dipper is famous because the North Pole Star (Polaris) can be found using it. The seven stars are named as follows: Dubhe, Merak, Phecda, Megrez, Alioth, Mizar, Alkaid

In the same line of sight as Mizar, but three light-years beyond it, is the star Alcor. Its proximity to Mizar renders it more difficult to resolve, and it has served as a traditional test of sight. Mizar is called Vasishta and Alcor is called Arundhati in Hindu mythology.

The flag of the state of Alaska features a stylized Big Dipper and North Star.

Alaska Flag
Alaska Flag