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U Tucanae

This weeks light curve of the week highlights one of the challenges we face as a community that's attempting to collect long-term light curves.  U Tucanae is a bright southern Mira variable with a reasonably good chart and a decades-long history of observations by visual observers.  Visual observations began to decline around the same time that automated observations began with the ASAS system in Chile.  Unfortunately the instrumental photometry from ASAS hasn't been publicly available since early 2010, leading to a sharp decline in overall coverage.  Automated surveys are an important new tool in astronomical research, but visual observers also need to be vigilant and maintain the decades-long light curves that we currently have.

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