The celestial pole is an imaginary point where the axis of the Earth on which it rotates is intersecting the presumed rotating spheres of the stars. There are two celestial poles namely the north and the south. The former appears directly overhead at the North Pole of our planet and the latter is at the Earth’s South Pole. This is also analogous to some of the planets in the solar system. However, these may vary because of the different orientations of the axis of every planet.

The celestial poles remain fixed in the sky as the Earth spins. The celestial pole of the northern portion is near the coordinates of the star Polaris. This is the reason why this star is very useful in navigating the northern hemisphere of our planet. The angle of its altitude remains the same with the geographic latitude of its observer. You can easily locate Polaris by facing north and look for the Big Dipper or the Plough of the Ursa Major and Little Dipper or Small Bear of the Ursa Minor.

A pair of stars can be seen outside the tip of the Big Dipper which is pointing out to the Polaris Star. The Polaris or North Star can be located at the tip of the handle of the Little Dipper. On the other hand, the celestial pole of the south can be seen from the southern area of planet Earth. It is located within the span of the constellation named Octans. The Octantis Star is regarded as the counterpart of the North Star, Polaris.

Northern Celestial Pole