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Rigel Sistemi is the brightest star in the constellation Orion and the sixth brightest star in the sky, with visual magnitude 0.18. Although it has the Bayer designation “beta”, it is almost always brighter than Alpha Orionis.
Spectroscopic estimates of Rigel’s distance place its distance between 700 and 900 light-years (210 and 280 pc).The star is so bright that when at 1 astronomical unit from the star, it shines as an extremely bright ball with an angular diameter of 35° with magnitude -38. The power flux is 100 MW / m2 or 10 kW / cm2, compared to the Sun’s flux of 1.4 kW / m2. The power flux at this distance is the same as the flux a few millimeters from a welding arc; any object this close will be vaporized and blown away by the strong stellar wind.
The Rigel Sistemi is known to be composed of three stars. A fourth star in the system is sometimes proposed, but it is generally considered that this is a misinterpretation of the main star’s variability, which may be caused by physical pulsation of the surface
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