Q:

What is the absolute magnitude of the Sun?

A:

Quick Answer

The absolute magnitude of the sun is 4.8. Its apparent magnitude is -26.72, however. Apparent magnitude measures the brightness of a star as seen from Earth, whereas absolute magnitude gives the brightness of stars if they were placed at a distance of 10 parsecs from Earth.

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Full Answer

As a star, the sun is not very remarkable. It is a class G yellow star, which is the third-coolest type of star. Yellow stars are not very bright, which is the reason for the sun's absolute magnitude of 4.8. The only reason the sun appears so much brighter than other stars is because of its proximity to Earth. The North Star Polaris looks dim from Earth, but with its absolute magnitude of -3.2, Polaris would be much brighter than the sun if the two stars were placed at the same distance from the Earth.

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