Astronomical Society of Edinburgh
Journal 43

Binocular Variable Stars in 2000-2001

Dave Gavine and Lorna McCalman continue to monitor selected variable stars using 80mm binoculars but it is hoped to rope in some of the CCD experts eventually. The present "repertoire" of about 32 stars has recently been extended to include RY, ST and Z Ursae Majoris and V Ursae Minoris, useful stars because they are circumpolar and can be observed all year round, like the stars of Draco. In addition Ron Livesey has a programme of telescopic variables in which he is experimenting with different observing methods, including filters, to try to counteract the problems of the retinal response to red stars which he sees very bright.

Light curves based on our (binocular) observations are presented. Notable events during the year were the unusual dimming of V465 Cas and the steep dive of R Coronae Borealis (not shown). R CrB is a frustrating star! It always decides to go into one of these deep fades when the star is disappearing in the western twilight in late autumn. Needless to say we missed it - again.

All the stars were followed using the BAA charts which may be seen, together with light curves and the information on each star, in the Variable Star Section Archive on the BAA website: http://www.ast.cam.ac.uk/~baa/.

Light curves from observations Light curves from observations

Dave Gavine