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News Release Archive:

News Release 65 of 950

June 3, 2013 10:15 AM (EDT)

News Release Number: STScI-2013-22

Rare Stellar Alignment Offers Opportunity to Hunt for Planets

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Video: Time-lapse Animation of Proxima Centauri's Proper Motion

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This animation is assembled from 10 years of observations of the red dwarf star Proxima Centauri, the nearest star to our Sun at 4.2 light-years. Proxima has a relatively large proper motion compared to that of more distant background stars. It moves 3.85 arcseconds per year across the sky, which is the angular size of a nickel located 1.5 miles away. The astrometric data used for this visualization were collected between 2000 to 2010 at The Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO), located in northern Chile.

Credit: NASA, ESA, A. Riedel and T. Henry (RECONS/SMARTS), and G. Bacon (STScI)

Selected still images from this video (click to enlarge):