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Alpha Centauri

Astronomy. a triple-star system that is the brightest celestial object in the constellation Centaurus.
Also called Rigel Kentaurus.
Origin of Alpha Centauri
< New Latin: Alpha of Centaurus Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for Alpha Centauri
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Historical Examples
  • Took his finger off the button and there we were: Alpha Centauri.

    Accidental Death Peter Baily
  • The Valhalla was on the return leg of a journey to Alpha Centauri.

    Starman's Quest Robert Silverberg
  • We have drawn attention to Alpha Centauri as the nearest of the stars.

    Astronomy of To-day Cecil G. Dolmage
  • The two nearest fixed stars are Alpha Centauri and 61 Cygni.

    Man's Place in the Universe Alfred R. Wallace
  • Rockets are slow; you would die before you got back from Alpha Centauri.

    Accidental Flight Floyd L. Wallace
  • I could launch this model for Alpha Centauri tonight—and it would get there.

    Martyr Alan Edward Nourse
  • "But Alpha Centauri is so very far away," Mrs. Bernardi sighed.

    Collector's Item Evelyn E. Smith
  • No reason why it should even go to Alpha Centauri at all, in fact.

    Collector's Item Evelyn E. Smith
  • Our destination is Tara, in the star system of Alpha Centauri.

    Danger in Deep Space Carey Rockwell
Alpha Centauri in Science
Alpha Centauri
  (āl'fə sěn-tôr'ē)   
A triple star system in the constellation Centaurus that is the third brightest star in the night sky, with an apparent magnitude of -0.27, and the star nearest to Earth, at a distance of about 4.2 light-years. The two brighter stars, Alpha Centauri A and B, form a binary star system, which is orbited by Proxima Centauri, a smaller, dimmer star.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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