Apr 23, 2014: Photometry of W UMa for Observational Astronomy class

Michael Richmond
Apr 24, 2014

On the night of Apr 23/24, 2014, a student taking the Observational Astronomy course -- Derek Cabone -- acquired images of the variable star W UMa for his class project. At the same time, undergraduate Mike Every and AST graduate student Dmitry Vorobiev used the 14-inch telescope to test the detector that Mike Every has built for his capstone project.

The main setup was:

W UMa is a bright binary system, with a mean V-band magnitude of V = 7.75.

The two stars orbit each other with a period of about 8 hours. We acquired measurements for about 5.5 hours, so we covered more than half the period. One minimum and two maxima can be seen in the light curve. There was a brief break in our measurements when the camera stopped taking pictures for some reason ... we couldn't figure out why.

Mr. Cabone and other students will be reducing and analyzing the data themselves, and then (I hope) combining it with data from a second night.

Last modified 4/24/2014 by MWR.