Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory Star Catalog


Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory Star Catalog

The Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory Star Catalog is an astrometric star catalogue. It was published by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory in 1966 and contains 258,997 stars. ["Star Catalog: Positions and Proper Motions of 258,997 Stars for the Epoch and Equinox of 1950.0", Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory Staff, Publications of the Smithsonian Institution of Washington, D.C., no. 4652, 4 vols., 1966 (reprinted 1971.)] [ [http://tdc-www.harvard.edu/catalogs/sao.html Webpage on the SAO star catalog] ] [ [http://www.to.astro.it/astrometry/Astrometry/DIRA2/DIRA2_doc/SAO/SAO.HTML More on the SAO star catalog] ] The catalogue wascompiled from various previous astrometric catalogues, and contains only stars to about ninth magnitude for which accurate proper motions were known. Names in the SAO catalogue start with the letters SAO, followed by a number. The numbers are assigned following 18 ten-degree bands of declination, with stars sorted by right ascension within each band.

Examples of SAO catalogue entries

* SAO 67174 is Vega.
* SAO 113271 is Betelgeuse.
* SAO 40012 is HD 277559.
* SAO 158687 is the star that was occulted by Uranus in March 1977, leading to the discovery of rings around Uranus. [Detection of rings around Uranus, R. L. Millis, L. H. Wasserman, and P. V. Birch, "Nature" 267 (May 26, 1977), pp. 330–331. [http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1977Natur.267..330M Abstract at ADSABS] ]

References


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