Another New Variable Star Discovery

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9 years 3 weeks ago #104341 by eansbro
Another New Variable Star Discovery was created by eansbro
They say "lightning never strikes twice", well in the case of our very own
amateur astronomer Mike Foylan of Cherryvalley Observatory based in Meath
this is not the case.

While working with his Italian colleges based in Italy, an analysis of
deeper images taken with the telescope of the University of Siena by Mr. Ale
Marchini a previously unreported variable star was made. From analysis by
Mike, Mr. Fabio Salvaggio, Mr. Ale Marchini and Mr. Riccardo Papini the new
discovery is also a binary system but with a difference from previous
discovery. I am sure Mike will fill us in on all the details soon.

The following user(s) said Thank You: michaeloconnell, michael_murphy, johnomahony, Mike, Graham

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9 years 3 weeks ago #104363 by Mike
Replied by Mike on topic Another New Variable Star Discovery
Many thanks Eamonn,

Hi guys
I meant to post information sooner but only getting around to it now due to work commitments, anyways here is the gist of the discovery (official designation: 000-BLR-043)

The system is located in the constellation of Ophiuchus and has a period of ~8.5 hours and its amplitude is between 14.67 and 15.51 in wide V-Band. Its J2000.0 RA & DEC is 17 11 24.62 -00 40 41.5 (257.85258 -0.67819).
It is classed as an EW, or more precisely a W UMa type, the following information from the AAVSO website gives an excellent explanation…

W UMa stars are easily recognized by their light curves with near equal minima and continuous light variation. Variability ranges from a few tenths to slightly over a magnitude. The periods are typically short and range between 0.25 days to around 1.0 days. Each of the components in the binary are of nearly the same spectral type, from around middle A to early K, with the bulk concentrated in middle F through early G. The stars are assumed to be in a similar evolutionary state, located near or just above the main sequence. The components are of different mass, but share very similar temperatures. The stars in the W UMa systems are believed to be very close together, even touching. Thus, they are categorized as near or over-contact systems. Each star in the binary has the same surface temperature despite having different masses because they share a common envelope; the stars are in thermal contact, and heat flows from the more massive star to the less massive one.

There is also nice artwork by Dirk Terrell which demonstrates a good representation of what this system would look like from a hypothetical circumbinary planet:

Here is the direct link to the AAVSO database for the new binary star discovery:

It’s a nice target for anyone with a modest telescope and camera system that wishes to develop their photometry skills and report their findings. As an added bonus there was a known RR Lyr type variable star within the same FOV, therefore it was possible to complete lightcurve analysis on this star also.

Link to Discovery Lightcurve: flic.kr/p/vbnusX
Link to Finder Chart: flic.kr/p/vbnvbF
Link to Known RR Lyr Type Variable Star: flic.kr/p/uvP1DN

This was in collaboration with my colleagues in Italy (Mr. Fabio Salvaggio, Mr. Ale Marchini and Mr. Riccardo Papini), as we work as a team all four of us share discoveries, observations, analyse and share data and generally help one another which proves once again that working together in such teams has great benefits.


I83 Cherryvalley Observatory

After one look at this planet any visitor from outer space would say; "I WANT TO SEE THE MANAGER".
The following user(s) said Thank You: Graham

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