Pegasus Constellation
pegasus constellation
The area highlighted in yellow is the asterism known as "The Square of Pegasus".
Pegasus Constellation Facts
  • Pegasus is a large constellation and easily identifiable due to its bright asterism known as "The Square of Pegasus".
  • Asterisms are groups of stars that form simple patterns but are part of one or more constellations.
  • Pegasus is visible in both the Northern and Southern hemispheres.
  • In the Northern hemisphere Pegasus can be seen from July to January.
  • In the Southern hemisphere the constellation can be viewed from August to December.
  • In the Southern hemisphere Pegasus will appear upside down.
  • In 1995 the first exoplanet known to orbit a sun like star was discovered in the constellation of Pegasus.
  • The constellation contains the first planets outside our solar system to have been directly observed by an Earth based telescope.
  • The nearest star to Earth which could possibly explode as a supernova is located in the Pegasus constellation.
  • Pegasus has been recognized as a constellation for 2,000 years.

Pegasus Mythology

pegasus mythology
Pegasus is a white winged stallion from Greek mythology.
Pegasus is a winged stallion horse derived from Greek mythology, a divine creature that brought forth springs from the Earth wherever it walked. Pegasus was also a servant to Zeus the King of Gods, obeying his every command.
There are several variations of how Pegasus was born, the most common version involves the Greek hero Perseus and his slaying of Medusa. As anyone who has seen the film “Jason and the Argonauts” will know Medusa was a monster with snakes for hair and whose gaze could turn a man to stone. Perseus was giving the task of slaying Medusa in her sea cave and did so successfully by using mirrors to avoid her stare. After cutting of her head with his sword the monster’s blood mingled with the sea water resulting in Pegasus being born from the cave floor along with his brother in the form of a young man named Chrysaor. Pegasus’s mother is therefore considered to be Medusa and his father Poseidon God of the Sea.

Main Stars in the Pegasus Constellation
pegasus constellation
The number next to each star is its apparent magnitude, its brightness from our point of view on Earth, the lower the number the brighter the star in the night sky.
Alpheratz
Confusingly Alpheratz is actually officially part of the Andromeda constellation but is considered a connecting star as it makes up part of the "Square of Pegasus" asterism. Alpheratz is the brightest star in Andromeda and also the brightest in Pegasus if you consider it part of the constellation.
Scheat
Also known as Beta Pegasi, Scheat is a red giant around 200 light years from Earth, it is almost 100 times larger in diameter than our sun with twice its mass.
Matar
Also known as Eta Pegasi, Matar is a binary star system around 170 light years from Earth, the primary star is a yellow giant 250 times brighter than our sun.
Algenib
Also known as Gamma Pegasi, Algenib is a blue sub giant emitting 6,000 times the energy of our sun.
Markab
Also known as Alpha Pegasi, Markab is a blue giant with twice the surface temperatures of the sun.
Homam
Also known as Zeta Pegasi, Homam is a blue main sequence star around 200 light years from Earth.
Enif
Also known as Epsilon Pegasi, Enif is officially the brightest star in the constellation of Pegasus, it is an orange super-giant star nearing the end of its lifespan and could possibly explode as a supernova over the next few million years, the star is almost 200 times larger in diameter than the sun and is located 690 light years from Earth.

Finding Pegasus - Northern Hemisphere
finding pegasus northern hemisphere
The chart shows the position of Pegasus over most of the United States in November at 9pm. This chart can also be applied to other areas of the Northern hemisphere such as Canada, the UK and Europe.

From July to August Pegasus will first appear low on the eastern horizon between 10pm and midnight, by around 4am the constellation will be directly overhead.

From September to October the constellation will be visible in the eastern sky around 8pm, by midnight it will be directly overhead before heading towards the north-western horizon.

In November to January Pegasus can be seen either high in the eastern sky or directly above from around 6pm before it moves westwards as the night goes on.

Finding Pegasus - Southern Hemisphere
finding pegasus southern hemisphere
The chart shows the position of Pegasus over most of Australia in late spring at 9pm. This chart can also be applied to other areas of the Southern hemisphere such as New Zealand, South Africa and South America. In the Southern hemisphere Pegasus is visible in the northern night sky.
In August Pegasus becomes visible at around 11pm low on the north-eastern horizon, by 3am the constellation will be high in the northern sky before heading towards the north-western horizon.
From September to October it will become visible in the north-eastern sky at around 8pm, gradually moving towards the northern sky as the night moves on.

From November to December the constellation will appear in the north-west at around 10pm before disappearing below the horizon a few hours later.


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