What Star Constellation Is Closest to the Moon?

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The star constellation that is the closest to the moon is Taurus the bull. Find out what star constellation is closest to the moon with help from an educational professional in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Moons & Planets
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Video Transcript

Hi, my name’s Eylene Pirez, and I’m an astrophysicist. And, this is, “What Star Constellation Is Nearest to the Moon?” So, when we are looking at constellations – let’s say that here is Earth, and here’s the moon orbiting us, so it has a path, let’s say that this is the equator – what we actually call constellations are these figures of the projection, is the map of the sky. It’s not necessarily, like, the constellations are stars that are come from the exact same cluster, or from similar distances. They can actually be very, very far from each other, and they generally are. So, let’s say, like, if you had, say, a constellation of Taurus was over here. In our mapping of it, we plot it as, like, these few stars, and, like, we call that Taurus. Now, where are the actual stars? Let’s say that one is here, one is over here, another one is here. So, it actually has to do with the projection of how we see it in the sky – not necessarily where they come from. So, just because this star, we see them near the other one, does not mean that they are near each other. They are completely different distances. So, a constellation is not a whole group of things. They’re just separate objects, separate places on the sky that we just see as if they were close to each other. Now, when we look at our constellations, we also have to realize that the moon’s path is always changing. So, it never stays next to the same constellation for a very long time. So, it actually doesn’t stay near one single star constellation, but it goes near many of them as its path is changing all across the Earth. My name is Eylene Pirez, and I’m an astrophysicist, and this is, “What Star Constellation Is Closest to the Moon?”

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