Beta Canis Minoris

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Beta Canis Minoris
Position Beta Cmi.png
Position of Beta Canis Minoris.
Observation data
Epoch J2000      Equinox J2000
Constellation Canis Minor
Right ascension 07h 27m 09.04174s[1]
Declination +08° 17′ 21.5368″[1]
Apparent magnitude (V) 2.89[2]
Spectral type B8 Ve[3]
U−B color index –0.28[2]
B−V color index –0.09[2]
Variable type SPBe[3]
Radial velocity (Rv) +22[4] km/s
Proper motion (μ) RA: -51.76[1] mas/yr
Dec.: -38.29[1] mas/yr
Parallax (π) 20.17 ± 0.20[1] mas
Distance 162 ± 2 ly
(49.6 ± 0.5 pc)
Mass 3.5[3] M
Radius 3.5[5] R
Luminosity 195[3] L
Surface gravity (log g) 3.51[5] cgs
Temperature 11,772[5] K
Rotational velocity (v sin i) 210[6] km/s
Age 160+20
[7] Myr
Other designations
Gomeisa, Algomeyla, Gomelza, 3 Canis Minoris, BD+08°1774, FK5 285, HD 58715, HIP 36188, HR 2845, IRAS 07244+0823, SAO 115456.[8]

Beta Canis Minoris (β CMi, β Canis Minoris) is a star in the constellation of Canis Minor. In the night sky it is notable for its proximity to the prominent star Procyon. It has the traditional name Gomeisa, which comes from the Arabic al-ghumaisa’ "the bleary-eyed (woman)",[9] short for مرزم الغميصاء mirzam al-ghumaisa’ "girdle of the bleary-eyed one". In Arabic, the short form would be identical with the name of Procyon.

In Chinese, 南河 (Nán Hé), meaning South River, refers to an asterism consisting of β Canis Minoris, Procyon and ε Canis Minoris.[10] Consequently, β Canis Minoris itself is known as 南河二 (Nán Hé èr, English: the Second Star of South River.)[11]


From parallax measurements, the distance to this star is about 162 light-years (50 parsecs).[1] It has an apparent visual magnitude of 2.89,[2] making it easily visible to the naked eye. Beta Canis Minoris has about 3.5 times the Sun's mass and is rotating rapidly with a projected rotational velocity of 210 km s−1,[6] which gives a lower bound on the azimuthal rotational velocity along the star's equator. The actual rotation rate may be about once per day.[9]

The stellar classification of this star is B8 Ve.[3] A luminosity class V star belongs on the main sequence, which means it is generating energy through the thermonuclear fusion of hydrogen at its core. The star is radiating this energy from its outer envelope at an effective temperature of 12,050 K,[3] giving it a blue-white hue typical of B-type stars.[12] An 'e' classification indicates that the spectrum contains emission lines, which means this is a Be star that is surrounded by a thin, circumstellar disk made of gaseous material ejected from the star. This hot, gaseous disk is about three times the radius of the star.[3]

Beta Canis Minoris shows little variation in brightness, but it does display changes in the hydrogen emission coming from the gaseous disk. Examination with the Canadian MOST space telescope reveals low amplitude changes in luminosity from the star. This variation has a cyclic pattern formed from multiple overlapping frequencies, with the dominant frequencies being 3.257 and 3.282 cycles per day. As such, it belongs to a class called slowly pulsating B-type stars, or SPBe.[3]


  1. ^ a b c d e f van Leeuwen, F. (November 2007). "Validation of the new Hipparcos reduction". Astronomy and Astrophysics 474 (2): 653–664. arXiv:0708.1752. Bibcode:2007A&A...474..653V. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20078357. 
  2. ^ a b c d Johnson, H. L.; et al. (1966), "UBVRIJKL photometry of the bright stars", Communications of the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory 4 (99), Bibcode:1966CoLPL...4...99J 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h Saio, H.; et al. (January 2007), "MOST Detects g-Modes in the Late-Type Be Star β Canis Minoris (B8 Ve)", The Astrophysical Journal 654 (1): 544–550, arXiv:astro-ph/0609460, Bibcode:2007ApJ...654..544S, doi:10.1086/509315 
  4. ^ Wilson, Ralph Elmer (1953). General Catalogue of Stellar Radial Velocities. Washington: Carnegie Institution of Washington. Bibcode:1953QB901.W495..... 
  5. ^ a b c Meilland, A.; Stee, Ph.; Chesneau, O.; Jones, C. (October 2009), "VLTI/MIDI observations of 7 classical Be stars", Astronomy and Astrophysics 505 (2): 687–693, arXiv:0908.1239, Bibcode:2009A&A...505..687M, doi:10.1051/0004-6361/200911960 
  6. ^ a b Abt, Helmut A.; Levato, Hugo; Grosso, Monica (July 2002), "Rotational Velocities of B Stars", The Astrophysical Journal 573 (1): 359–365, Bibcode:2002ApJ...573..359A, doi:10.1086/340590 
  7. ^ Janson, Markus; et al. (August 2011), "High-contrast Imaging Search for Planets and Brown Dwarfs around the Most Massive Stars in the Solar Neighborhood", The Astrophysical Journal 736 (2): 89, arXiv:1105.2577, Bibcode:2011ApJ...736...89J, doi:10.1088/0004-637X/736/2/89 
  8. ^ "bet CMi -- Be Star", SIMBAD (Centre de Données astronomiques de Strasbourg), retrieved 2012-01-09 
  9. ^ a b Kaler, James B., "GOMEISA (Beta Canis Minoris)", Stars (University of Illinois), retrieved 2012-01-09 
  10. ^ (Chinese) 中國星座神話, written by 陳久金. Published by 台灣書房出版有限公司, 2005, ISBN 978-986-7332-25-7.
  11. ^ (Chinese) 香港太空館 - 研究資源 - 亮星中英對照表, Hong Kong Space Museum. Accessed on line November 23, 2010.
  12. ^ "The Colour of Stars", Australia Telescope, Outreach and Education (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation), December 21, 2004, retrieved 2012-01-16