The celestial equator is an imaginary line that extends out from the Earth’s equator into the celestial sphere. It divides the celestial sphere in half (just like the real equator does with Earth) and is used to map stars and other celestial objects.
Where is the celestial equator?
The celestial equator is the great circle of the imaginary celestial sphere on the same plane as the equator of Earth. This plane of reference bases the equatorial coordinate system.
The location of the celestial equator depends on your location on Earth. It is an extension of Earth’s equator, so if you are standing in a city on Earth’s equator, the celestial equator would be directly above your location. What is the difference between the equator and the celestial equator?
What is the celestial equator on the celestial sphere?
The celestial equator is defined to be infinitely distant (since it is on the celestial sphere); thus, the ends of the semicircle always intersect the horizon due east and due west, regardless of the observer’s position on Earth. At the poles, the celestial equator coincides with the astronomical horizon.
You should be wondering “What plane is the celestial equator on?”
, and celestial equator. The celestial equator is currently inclined by about 23.44° to the ecliptic plane. The image shows the relations between Earth’s axial tilt (or obliquity), rotation axis, and orbital plane. The celestial equator is the great circle of the imaginary celestial sphere on the same plane as the equator of Earth.
Due to Earth’s axial tilt, the celestial equator is currently inclined by about 23.44° with respect to the ecliptic (the plane of Earth’s orbit).
Why is the celestial equator important?
The celestial equator is an extension of Earth’s equator in the sky. The celestial equator divides the sky into the northern and southern hemispheres, just as Earth’s equator does. In order to understand more about why the celestial equator is important, let’s discuss the rest of this stellar coordinate system, the celestial sphere.
What is the meaning of equator?
Definition In Equator In astronomy, the celestial equator is the great circle in which the plane of the terrestrial Equator intersects the celestial sphere; it consequently is equidistant from the celestial poles.