Institute of Astronomy

The brightest star

Published on 28/02/2011 
Question: 

What is the brightest star in the night sky?

We believe our galaxy, the Milky Way, contains roughly 200 THOUSAND MILLION stars (that is, 200,000,000,000). However, if you were to count the number of stars in the night sky with a naked eye, you would only be able to count about 6,000. Besides our star, the Sun, the brightest star in the night sky is Sirius, in the constellation Canis Major (the “Big Dog”). Sirius is almost twice as bright as the next brightest star, Canopus, in the constellation Carina.

Page last updated: 2 May 2011 at 11:10