The Sextant

Origin:Johannes Hevelius, 1690
Fully Visible:83°S – 78°N

German/Polish astronomer Johannes Hevelius (1611–1687) created this constellation in the late seventeenth century. It represents the astronomical sextant, an instrument he used for measuring star positions.

The constellation of Sextans

Notable Features

Visible Named Stars
The brightest star in the constellation, α Sex, is just fourth-magnitude. None of the visible stars in this constellation have an official name.
Other Interesting Stars
HD 86081 Bibhā This ninth-magnitude star is known to have at least one exoplanet. It is located near the constellation line connecting α Sex and γ Sex.
Deep Sky Objects
C53 Spindle Galaxy This is an edge-on lenticular galaxy with a central supermassive black hole. It is estimated that the mass of the black hole is on the order of 2 billion solar masses, making it the nearest billion-solar-mass black hole to Earth. This galaxy is also catalogued as NGC 3115.
Meteor Shower Radiants
221 DSX Daytime Sextantids This shower is active through most of September into early October, with a peak around 27 September and a ZHR of 20. Its radiant (near α Sex) is close to the Sun at this time of year so the Daytime Sextantids are very difficult to see in the hours before sunrise. The shower may be associated with the minor planet 2005 UD.