Ursa Major (The Great Bear)
Ursa Major (pronounced ˌɜːrsə ˈmeɪdʒər) is the Latin name of a large constellation (in fact it extends itself for about 55 degrees across the sky) situated north of the celestial equator. As such, it is more easily visible from the northern hemisphere.
In English language this constellation is also known as "The Great bear" while in astronomical texts and literature this constellation is often abbreviated as "UMa" (according to the standard of the International Astronomical Union - IAU) or as "UMaj" (according to a naming convention used by NASA).
The Latin genitive of the constellation name is "Ursae Majoris" (pronounced ˌɜːrsiː məˈdʒɒrɪs) 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 Ursae Majoris (the brightest star of Ursa Major based on the Bayer catalog); or 23 Ursae Majoris (the 23th star in the constellation of Ursa Major based on the Flamsteed catalog).
Sky chart of Ursa Major from your location
Here we provide a simplified sky chart of the Ursa Major constellation. Alternatively it is possible to locate Ursa Major in the night sky using our Online Interactive Planetarium.
Visibility of Ursa Major from your location
Ursa Major is circumpolar and transits at 18:16 UTC (altitude: 87.5°)
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 Ursa Major actually is) these times can have little relevance.
Top bright stars in Ursa Major
The table below lists the top 20 brightest stars in the Ursa Major constellation. See also the complete list of 223 stars brighter than magnitude 6.5 (approximate) in the constellation of Ursa Major. Click on each star to see more details about it.
(*) HR stands for Harvard Revised Bright Star Catalogue, which is also known as the Yale Catalogue of Bright Stars.
Top deep sky objects in Ursa Major
The table below lists the 20 brightest deep sky objects in the Ursa Major constellation. See also the complete list of 514 deep sky objects in the constellation of Ursa Major. The list includes objects from the Messier, New General Catalogue (NGC) and Index Catalogue (IC).