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Variable and Potentially Variable Stars in the Bright Star Catalog

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Dorrit Hoffleit

Yale University Observatory, New Haven, CT 06520




The fourth edition of the Bright Star Catalog, now being complied jointly at the Yale and Strasbourg Observatories, will contain 610 confirmed and 1261 suspected variable stars. This amounts to 20% of the Bright Star Catalog and is up to 12% over the numbers in the 1964 edition. Among the stars with late M-type or peculiar A-type spectra high percentages have been found to be variable. In these categories it is noted that relatively few variables confirmed by 1969 have amplitudes under 0.5 visual magnitude, whereas the vast majority of those discovered and verified subsequently do have amplitudes well under 0.5 mag. Most of these are either slowly varying irregular variables of class Lb, or CVn stars with periods less than two days. Lists have been prepared of the potentially variables stars with these spectral characteristics. They should be monitored photoelectrically, the Ap types frequently, the M stars occasionally. AAVSO members who have photoelectric equipment might well enjoy the thrills of discovery observing these stars.


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