(cba:news) seasonal trinkets
jop at astro.columbia.edu
Fri Dec 5 15:10:24 EST 1997
Dear CBAers, Dec. 5, 1997.
An exciting coupla days. Cap'n Bob and Dave West sprang into action,
and the data show clearly that TT Ari has switched to a new period,
0.1495+-0.0002 d. That's Porb+8.7%, whereas the old superhump clocked
in at Porb-3.5%. Imagine that, it actually switched sides. Uncharted
waters for TT Ari, and only reported in print for one other star in the
CV zoo. In our somewhat theory-biased nomenclature, we might say that
it switched from a nodal to an apsidal superhump.
Mighty big amplitude too, 0.18 mag. Get thee to a telescope.
Jonathan has this week on a 2.4 m telescope. There's precious little
clear weather, but on his only clear night so far, he found an 80 min
binary period (in LL And, a real bottom-of-the-barrel CV). The
remarkable thing is its brightness, about 22.5 mag. I think this may
be the faintest star ever to reveal its binary period from optical
observations carried out on the Earth. (Please correct me if this is
wrong.) Not bad for a mere stripling of 24 years.
No change in target priorities. Get a piece of that fine TT Ari action
while it still lingers in the evening sky.
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