of Physics, University of Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia
April 6, 2006; accepted May 2, 2006
Abstract Using the Harvard College Observatory photographic
plate collection and recent CCD observations by the ASAS project we have
reconstructed the light variations of the southern pulsating red giant star VZ
Velorum between 1890 and early 2006. Contrary to an early report on its
low-amplitude semiregular nature, we found a relatively stable Mira-like light
curve with a mean period of 318 days and amplitude up to 7 magnitudes. The
latest observations show evidence for a slightly shorter period (312 days).
However, the difference does not exceed the intrinsic period jitter often seen
in Mira type variables.