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Variable Stars

Variable Star Types

Eruptive Variables

Be: Be Stars
FU: FU Orionis Stars
GCAS: Gamma Cassiopeiae Stars
Rapidly rotating Be III-IV stars. Examples: Gamma Cas, Pleione (BU Tau)
I: Irregular variable
Poorly known and/or studied irregular variable
IA:
Poorly studied irregular of early spectral type (O-A)
IB:
Poorly studied irregular variable of later spectral type (F-M)
IN: Irregular nebulous variables
Nebular or Orion variables, irregular variables associated with bright diffuse nebulae.
INA:
Orion variables of early spectral type (O-A)
INB:
Orion variables of later spectral type (F-M)
INT:
T Tauri star
IS:
ISA:
of early spectral type (O-A)
ISB:
of later spectral type (F-M)
RCB: R Coronae Borealis (R CrB) stars
RS: RS Canum Venaticorum (RS CVn) stars
SDor, S Dor: S Doradus stars
also Hubble-Sandage variables Examples: Eta Carinae, P Cygni, S Doradus in LMC
UV: UV Ceti stars, flare stars
UVN: Flaring nebular (Orion) variables
WR: Wolf-Rayet stars

Pulsating Variables

Cep: Delta Cephei stars, Cepheid variables
Named after Delta Cephei, the second of these stars discovered (by English amateur John Goodricke in 1784; first was Eta Aql, discovered by Edward Pigott in the same year). These are supergiants of spectral types F, G, K which pulsate with a period of a few to almost 100 days and an amplitude between 0.1 and 2 magnitudes. Cepheids are normally evolved stars which habve used up, after their hydrogen, also their helium in the core. There are type I (Delta Cephei) and type II (W Virginis) Cepheids, distinguished by chemical composition and membership in different stellar populations (type I Cepheids are found in population I, i.e. spiral arms and irregular galaxies, type II in population II, globular clusters, galactic halos and ellipticals), and different period-luminosity relations (for the same period, type I Cepheids are typically about 1.5 magnitudes brighter).
DCep: Delta Cephei stars
"Classical" cepheids, belonging to population I (spiral arms, irregular galaxies), typically with long periods. There is a subclass with almost symmetric light curves.
CW: W Virginis Stars, Cepheids type II
Cepheids belonging to stellar population II, the old stellar population (galactic halos, globular clusters, elliptical galaxies). Two period ranges are preferred:
CWA: long-period (> 8d) W Virginis stars
10-30 days (Ex: W Vir)
CWB, BL Her: short-period (< 8d) W Vir stars or BL Her stars
1-4 days (Ex: BL Her)

Rotating Variables

BY Dra

Cataclysmic Variables (CVs)

AM Her

Eclipsing Binaries

X-Ray Variables

Other

Index of Variable Star types

AM Her                       
BL Her
BY Dra
Cep: Cepheids: DCep, CW (W Vir)
CW: W Vir/type II Cep: CWA (W Vir), CWB (BL Her)
CWA: W Vir
CWB: BL Her
DCep: Delta Cephei
I: Irregular variable
IA
IB
IN
INA
INB
INT: T Tauri stars
IS
ISA
ISB
RCB
RS
SDor, S Dor: S Doradus stars
UV
UVN
WR: Wolf-Rayet stars















References

List of Well-Observable Variables

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Links


Hartmut Frommert [contact]
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