The Teapot AsterismJul 15, 2023
The Teapot is a well-known asterism within the larger constellation of Sagittarius, and it's one of the easiest star patterns to recognize in the night sky. It is found in the southern hemisphere of the sky, and it's often visible during the summer months in the northern hemisphere. It's positioned in the direction of the center of our Milky Way galaxy, which is home to a dense concentration of stars, dust, and gas. This region of the sky offers some of the most spectacular views of the Milky Way.
Definition of an Asterism
An asterism is not a true constellation but rather a pattern or group of stars that can be part of a constellation or a collection of constellations. Sometimes they're simple shapes of just a few stars and other times they are a collection of lots of bright stars. They're useful for people who want to familiarize themselves with the night sky. The Teapot, Maui’s hook, the Summer Triangle, and the Northern cross are a few of many commonly known asterisms in the night sky.
Finding The Teapot Asterism
Finding the Teapot asterism and Sagittarius the Archer constellation go hand in hand, because not only is the Teapot within Sagittarius, but their patterns are very similar. When looking at the night sky use the Summer Triangle asterism to help identify Cygnus and Aquila. Sagittarius is located next to Aquilla in line with the two constellations. On the other side of the teapot Scorpius can be found. It is also located in the brightest part of the Milky Way Galaxy. The Milky Ways galaxy can often resemble the steam that comes out of the spout of the Teapot Asterism. While most people cannot see the Milky Way Galaxy due to light pollution, the hook pattern within Scorpius is a great way to identify the Teapot.
This asterism is located in Sagittarius the Archer and it's best seen in June, July, and August, which is summertime for the Northern Hemisphere and winter for the Southern Hemisphere. It's visible from both hemispheres unless you live above 55 degrees North. You can see it pretty much everywhere from 55 degrees down to the equator and everywhere in the Southern Hemisphere. The best way to find it is to look for Scorpius. Look for that giant hook-like shape in the sky, and if you're lucky enough to see the Milky Way galaxy from where you live then look for the brightest part of the sky, and from there you'll be able to find the teapot pattern.