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27 Tauri

Proper NameAtlas
Bayer DesignationNone
Flamsteed Number27 Tauri
HR (BSC)1178
Right Ascension3h 49m 10s
Declination+24° 3' 12"
Distance382 light years
117 parsecs
MagnitudeApparent: +3.6
Absolute: -1.7
Spectral ClassB8III blue giant
Optimum VisibilityNovember / December
NotesAtlas is a triple system, with a close binary at its heart and a much more distant third member that orbits the inner pair over a period of 260 years. The system shows variability characteristic of a pulsating star, with its magnitude changing across several overlapping periods ranging from eighteen hours to more than two days.

In Greek mythology, Atlas was a hero, the son of a Titan, who rebelled against the gods; his famous punishment was to bear the heavens above the Earth. More relevant from an astronomical perspective, though, was the fact that he fathered both the Hyades and the Pleiades. The variable blue star that takes his name shares the constellation of Taurus with the clusters named for his daughters, and indeed the star Atlas belongs to the Pleiades cluster.

Imagery provided by Aladin sky atlas


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