Rigel, or Beta Orionis, a bright star in the southwest corner of the constellation Orion. Rigel is a supergiant and one of the brightest stars known. In absolute magnitude it is some 50,000 times brighter than the sun. Although Rigel is a young star, it is using up its supply of hydrogen fuel at such a rapid rate that it will burn itself out in a few million years. Rigel is about 800 light-years distant from the earth.