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Published on Oct 5, 2011
www.eyesonthesky.com - Video aimed at northern hemisphere observers about the variable star Mira in the constellation Cetus, that has recently peaked in brightness. Its variability was discovered by David Fabricius back in 1596, who initially mistook it for a supernova. Recently the GALEX space telescope that images in ultraviolet light was pointed at Mira, and discovered a 13 year long tail of material that the star has been shedding. Mira is at it's brightest this peak, at around magnitude 2.1 in October of 2011. It will decrease by about one magnitude per month, likely diminishing to it's typical low magnitude of around 9. The AAVSO routinely accepts volunteer variable star estimations, and with Jupiter nearby Mira right now, it is a great time for anyone interested in doing some citizen astronomy to look towards Mira right now.