Beta Canum Venaticorum
Position: Primary (A)
Spectral Class: G0 V
Type: Main Sequence Star
Coordinates: -22.2X, -3.1Y, 19.8Z
Absolute Bolometric Magnitude: 4.46
Effective Surface Temperature: 6020°K
Life Zone: 0.90 au – 1.32 au
Optimum Distance: 1.10 au
The star Beta Canum Venaticorum lies 29.9 light years from Sol on a straight line, but actual distance travelled by human ships is 41.8 light years, as they voyage from star to star along the French Arm. The star is very similar to Earth’s, being just slightly larger, hotter, and brighter.
There are eight planets in the system. The common usage when discussing the system is to simply refer to them as Beta Canum-I through -VIII. Planets 1 to 3 all lie short of their star’s life zone; planet 4 lies at exactly optimum distance within the life zone; and planets 5 to 8 all lie considerably outside of it.
Both Beta Canum-I and -II are actually twin world systems. That is, Beta Canum-I is officially listed as a 5000-kilometer diameter rocky core world with a ring and a 4000-kilometer diameter satellite. In actuality, the world and its satellite are so close to the same size and mass that they both orbit a point fixed between them. Beta Canum-II is a little larger at 6000 kilometers, but it also has a 4000-kilometer satellite. Beta Canum-I and its twin orbit their star at 0.2 AU, while Beta Canum-II and its twin orbit at 0.3 AU.
Beta Canum-III is 19,000 kilometers in diameter. It is a hothouse world with a dense atmosphere and no freestanding water. Surface gravity is 1 3 g. The world has no satellites.
Beta Canum IV, the stellar system’s garden world, is described in detail in a separate entry.
Beta Canum-V, -VI, and -VII are icy core worlds with very little gravity or atmosphere. Beta Canum-V is 4000 kilometers in diameter and orbits its star at 2.27 AU; Beta Canum-VI has a diameter of 7000 kilometers and an orbital distance of 8.16 AU, and Beta Canum-VII orbits at 12.25 AU and has a diameter of 4000 kilometers. None of these worlds have satellites.
Beta Canum-VIII, the last world in the system, orbits its star at 15.92 AU and has a diameter of 16,000 kilometers, making it the second largest planet in the system. This small giant (or gas midget) holds four satellites captive as well as a ring. In order, progressing from the planet’s surface, they are: a 4000-kilometer diameter water and ice ball at 1 6,000-kilometer orbit (gravitational stress keeps much of the planet’s water in liquid form), a 100-kilometer diameter rock at 32,000 kilometers, a ring at 90,000 kilometers, a 5000-kilometer diameter rock at 1 12,000-kilometer orbit, and a 2000-kilometer ice ball at 1,760,000-kilometer orbit.