Canopus, Alpha Carinae, is the brightest star in Carina constellation and the second brightest star in the night sky.
Canopus is fainter only than Sirius. The star is a supergiant or bright giant, yellowish-white in colour, with an apparent magnitude of -0.72. It is located at a distance of 310 light years from Earth. It lies too far south and can’t be seen north of latitude 37°18’N, but it is circumpolar for observers south of latitude 37°18’S.
For northern observers, Canopus doesn’t rise very high in the sky. The name Canopus comes from the Greek name Κάνωβος (Kanôbos), first recorded in Ptolemy’s Almagest (150 AD).
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