Vela was part of Argo Navis, depicted here by Johannes Hevelius in his Firmamentum Sobiescianum sive Uranographia (1687). Source image provided by www.RareMaps.com — Barry Lawrence Ruderman Antique Maps Inc.
|Vela Constellation Profile
|Location: Southern Hemisphere
||Size/Area: 500 sq. deg.
||Size Rank: 32
|On Meridian: 9pm March 25th
||Best View (North): Spring
||Best View (South):
|Bordering Constellations: Carina, Centaurus, Antlia, Pyxis, Puppis
The Myth Behind the Constellation Vela
Vela, “The Sails”, was part of a much larger constellation known as Argo Navis, the ship Argo. Argo was the vessel that Jason and the Argonauts sailed on during their quest for the Golden Fleece (see Aries.) In the mid-eighteenth century French astronomer Nicolas-Louis de La Caille divided this super constellation into three parts; Carina, Puppis and Vela. He also created a fourth constellation, Pyxis, using stars from part of this vast group.
Vela Constellation Points of Interest
Interesting stars and objects.
Bright Stars in Vela
These are the stars in Vela with a minimum magnitude of 3.0.