CBA Center for Backyard Astrophysics

Superhumps in Cataclysmic Binaries. III. V795 Herculis

Joseph Patterson and David Skillman

Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific

November 1994, Volume 106, Page 1141

We report photometry of the cataclysmic variable V795 Herculis during 1990-1994. Comparison of recent with previously published data shows that the 2.78-hr periodicity has essentially disappeared; the amplitude has diminished by a factor of at least 10. In its place, there is a low-amplitude signal near the radial-velocity (orbital?) period of 2.60 hr. During 1983-1989, the star did show an obvious 2.78-hr signal. We study the published data on this signal, together with our own data under the (questionable) assumption that the signal still exists with an amplitude too small to survive the rigors of unbiased period detection. The data are really too sparse and too poorly distributed to decide the issue of phase stability. But since the photometric signal is transient and exceeds the likely orbital period by approximately 8%, the photometric waves are likely to be yet another example of "superhumps", the phenomenon made famous by dwarf novae in superoutburst. At high frequencies, the star shows a quasi-periodic signal with P approximately 1160 s, and possibly also a stable signal with P = 1310.2 s (or 1330.4 s, the one-day alias). The beat period between these signals could be the orbital period, or that of the vanished superhump.



Copyright © 1994 Astronomical Society of the Pacific.