Arcturus: Facts About the Bright Red Giant Star

Arcturus is a red giant star in the Northern Hemisphere of Earth‘s sky and the brightest star in the constellation Boötes (the herdsman). Arcturus is also among the brightest stars that can be seen from Earth. Astronomers say Arcturus will end up as a white dwarf at the end of its life.

The name Artcurus comes from the Greek meaning “keeper or guardian of the bear”, which refers to the its position adjacent to the tail of the constellation Ursa Major (the Great Bear). 

Locating Arcturus

Arcturus in the Bootes constellation

Arcturus can be found in the Boötes Constellation.  (Image credit: Getty Images)

Arcturus can be found around 37 light-years away from Earth and is the 4th brightest star in the night sky.