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🌎 Location: Greenwich, United Kingdom [change]

Cancer (The Crab) Constellation

Cancer (pronounced ˈkænsər) is the Latin name of a large constellation (in fact it extends itself for about 33 degrees across the sky) situated close to the celestial equator. As such, it is at least partly visible from both hemispheres in certain times of the year.

In English language this constellation is also known as "The Crab" while in astronomical texts and literature this constellation is often abbreviated as "Cnc" (according to the standard of the International Astronomical Union - IAU) or as "Canc" (according to a naming convention used by NASA).

The Latin genitive of the constellation name is "Cancri" (pronounced ˈkæŋkraɪ) and it is used to identify some of the brightest stars in this constellation based on the Bayer or Flamsteed star naming convention. For instance: α Cancri (the brightest star of Cancer based on the Bayer catalog); or 23 Cancri (the 23th star in the constellation of Cancer based on the Flamsteed catalog).

Cancer is above the horizon from Greenwich, United Kingdom [change]. Altitude: 28°.
Available Resources for Cancer

Sky Chart of Cancer Constellation

Here we provide a simplified sky chart of the Cancer constellation. Alternatively it is possible to locate Cancer in the night sky using our Online Interactive Planetarium.

Chart of  constellation
This constellation image is derivatve work based on original work by IAU and Sky & Telescope magazine (Roger Sinnott & Rick Fienberg) CC-BY-3.0.

Visibility of Cancer Constellation

Location: Greenwich, United Kingdom [change]
Latitude: 51° 28’ 47” N
Longitude: 0° 00’ 00” E
Timezone: Europe/London

Today's Cancer rise, transit and set times from Greenwich, United Kingdom [change] are the following (all times relative to the local timezone Europe/London):

Azimuth: 70.2°
Max altitude: 58.3°
Azimuth: 289.8°
Cancer is above the horizon from Greenwich, United Kingdom

The rise and set times provided here are just directional indications and they refer to a point approximately placed at the center of the constellation. In case of very large constellations (like Cancer actually is) these times can have little relevance.

Bright Stars in Cancer Constellation

The table below lists the top 20 brightest stars in the Cancer constellation. See also the complete list of 106 stars brighter than magnitude 6.5 (approximate) in the constellation of Cancer. Click on each star to see more details about it.

HR Number(*) Star designation Proper name Visual magnitude Color Notes
HR3249 β Cancri Tarf 3.52 Variable; Double;
HR3461 δ Cancri Asellus Australis 3.94 Double;
HR3475 ι Cancri 4.02 Variable; Double;
HR3572 α Cancri Acubens 4.25 Variable; Multiple;
HR3449 γ Cancri Asellus Borealis 4.66 Multiple;
HR3163 8 Cancri 5.12
HR3306 5.13 Double;
HR3627 ξ Cancri Nahn 5.14 Double;
HR3262 χ Cancri 5.14
HR3561 ο1 Cancri 5.2
HR3575 σ3 Cancri 5.2 Double;
HR3540 ρ2 Cancri 5.22
HR3623 κ Cancri 5.24 Variable; Multiple;
HR3176 μ2 Cancri 5.3
HR3366 η Cancri 5.33
HR3669 π2 Cancri 5.34
HR3357 θ Cancri 5.35 Variable; Multiple;
HR3532 57 Cancri 5.39 Multiple;
HR3550 60 Cancri 5.41 Variable;
HR3621 τ Cancri 5.43
...go to the complete list of 106 bright stars in the constellation of Cancer

(*) HR stands for Harvard Revised Bright Star Catalogue, which is also known as the Yale Catalogue of Bright Stars.

Deep Sky Objects in Cancer Constellation

The table below lists the 20 brightest deep sky objects in the Cancer constellation. See also the complete list of 354 deep sky objects in the constellation of Cancer. The list includes objects from the Messier, New General Catalogue (NGC) and Index Catalogue (IC).

Name Type Magnitude
Messier 44 (Praesepe Cluster) Open Cluster 3.1 (V)
Messier 67 (King Cobra) Open Cluster 6.9 (V)
NGC 2775 Galaxy 10.48 (V)
NGC 2648 Galaxy 11.82 (V)
NGC 2563 Galaxy 12.39 (V)
NGC 2535 Galaxy 12.6 (V)
NGC 2750 Galaxy 12.7 (B)
NGC 2619 Galaxy 12.72 (V)
NGC 2789 Galaxy 13.06 (V)
NGC 2672 Galaxy 13.1 (B)
NGC 2545 Galaxy 13.2 (B)
NGC 2608 Galaxy 13.2 (B)
NGC 2749 Galaxy 13.3 (B)
NGC 2623 Galaxy 13.36 (V)
NGC 2599 Galaxy 13.4 (B)
NGC 2554 Galaxy 13.5 (B)
NGC 2592 Galaxy 13.6 (B)
IC 2446 Galaxy 13.64 (V)
NGC 2513 Galaxy 13.7 (B)
...go to the complete list of 354 deep sky objects in the constellation of Cancer