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In the night sky: Orion
In the night sky: Orion

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1.2.3 Moving constellations

A drawing of the different consellations are in relation to earth.
Figure 8

Most of the names that we know constellations by come from ancient Middle Eastern, Greek, and Roman mythologies. The movement of stars through the sky has been the topic of stories and superstitions throughout human history.

The constellations appear to move across the sky because of the rotation of the Earth and the orbit of the Earth around the Sun, so different constellations can be seen at different times of the year and at different times of the night.

Activity 1.1

Get out your star wheel or open the Stellarium app that you looked at in Map of the night sky, and use it to find out what stars you might be able to see in the sky this evening.

  • Star wheel – turn the top circle around until it reveals the current date and time.
  • Stellarium – the app will fast forward to what you’ll see as soon as it’s dark and track the movement of the stars as the timer moves forward. You can speed this up so that you can see the stars ‘move’ over the course of a night.