β Cephei


Beta Cephei is called Alfirk: "Herd"; it's five degrees north of alpha. With alpha centred, move two binocular fields north: binoculars.

The star is part of a curious little asterism that looks like a dipper without the handle (in spring upside down):

Beta Cephei (with a binary label of Struve 2806) is a blue giant with an eighth-magnitude companion: 3.2, 8.6; 256 and separation 14.8".

It is also the prototype of an important class of pulsating variables, although the variations are too small for naked eye or binocular appreciation.

The telescopic binary Struve 2883, near the eastern edge of your field of view, has a bright primary and fainter companion: 5.6, 8.5; 252, 14.5".

Two stars north of beta now hold our interest, kappa and gamma. Move about two binocular fields northwest of beta to find kappa.

Kappa Cephei is also known as Struve 2675; it's a multiple system:
      AB: 4.4, 8.3; 120, 7.2"
      AC: 4.4, 10.3; 334, 170".

To find gamma Cephei, move two binocular fields due east: gamma. Click on gamma on the map for its details.

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1999-2014 by Richard Dibon-Smith.