Among the 118218 stars measured by Hipparcos, 11597 were found to be (possibly) variable. Of these more than 8000 are new. If you want to find some background to understanding what variable stars are, and why they are important in astronomy, take a look here from the home page of the American Association of Variable Star Observers. Further information is also available from the Variable Star Network [external link] (VSNET ) web site.
Variables are broadly classified as follows (the star in brackets is a typical example for that class and is linked to the Hipparcos light curve for that star):
- pulsating variables
- eruptive variables
- eclipsing binary stars (beta Persei (Algol): HIP 14576)
- rotating stars (RS Canum Venaticorum: HIP 64293)
Two Annexes of the Hipparcos and Tycho Catalogues are dedicated specifically to variable stars.
Clicking on the highlighted text will bring up 10 examples of the light curves from each of the different parts of the Variability Annex. The light curves are given in pdf format: you can examine them in greater detail; or you can experiment by trying to determine the periods of these variables yourself using the interactive software tool provided!
|| Copyright © 2014 European Space Agency. All rights reserved.
The RSSD Web Portal provides a single login facility to simplify access to several other applications within this site.
The login facility has detected that you have passwords to one or more of these other systems (Livelink, Mantis, CVS, etc.) which do not match your current LDAP password.
By clicking on [SYNCHRONIZE] you will be able to reset all these passwords and bring them into line with your main portal password with no further effort on your part.
Synchronizing Passwords - Please Wait