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Earth’s Neighbors: The Nearest Stars

by Kenny Hoeschen
Earth’s Neighbors: The Nearest Starszoom in

This diagram from Space.com charts the 53 stars that are nearest to Earth, along with each star’s classification and distance.

The nearest stars to Earth are in the Alpha Centauri triple-star system, about 4.37 light-years away. One of these stars, Proxima Centauri, is slightly closer, at 4.24 light-years. Of all the stars closer than 15 light-years, only two are spectral type G, similar to our sun: Alpha Centauri A and Tau Ceti. In late 2012, astronomers discovered that Tau Ceti may host five planets including one within the star’s habitable zone. Tau Ceti is the nearest single G-type star like our sun (although the Alpha Centauri triple-star system also hosts a G-type star and is much closer).

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