“Comet Hunter” discovers two previously unknown “variable stars”.

Two Previously Unknown “Variable Stars” Austrian amateur astronomer and former Deputy Editor-in-Chief of KURIER, Michael the hunter, was discovered. The head of the Martinsberg Astronomical Center (AZM) in Waldviertel, which discovered the comet named “290P/Jäger” in 1998, was able to observe these two rare stars.

Stars are not always the same brightness; Sometimes they change their brightness significantly and relatively quickly. Then we talk about “variable stars”. Coincidentally, these two stars were found in AZM while observing known comets, Jäger reports.

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On November 18, a “red dwarf” in the Sagittarius constellation increased its brightness by three magnitudes in less than a minute, and on January 12, a star in Gemini flashed briefly. Both stars were previously not known as “variables”. With the support of experienced variable observer Klaus Bernhardt from Upper Austria, one of these suns is now included in the “International Variable Star Index”.

The well-known “convertible”

The well-known “variable” will keep astronomers busy during the first half of the year. T Coronae Borealis is a “white dwarf” that shows such a violent outburst every 80 years that it is visible to the naked eye for a few days in the starry sky. The AZM chief emphasizes that an explosion is possible at any time. When the time comes, the Astronomy Center will offer a special tour to observe the “variables.”

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The season at AZM starts on March 8th and there will be more than 20 events until the beginning of November. Seasonal highlights in summer and fall include the Perseids, a partial lunar eclipse and another very bright comet. The popular full moon hikes will be held again this year, the topic of light pollution will also be addressed and children will be offered solar observations during the summer months.

Darkest part of the country

The Martinsberg Astronomical Center is located in the southwestern Waldviertel at an altitude of 860 meters above sea level and is “particularly close to heaven”. As the public observatory is located across from all the metropolises in one of the darkest parts of the country, the light pollution is correspondingly high. Defined.

More about the “Star Friends” program here: azm-sternwarte-orion.at

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