Author(s)Andrew P. Odell
Contributor(s)The Pennsylvania State University CiteSeerX Archives
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AbstractAims. For the past 25 years, BW Vulpeculae has been the topic of period analyses centered on a secular period change with a periodic variation superposed, presumed to be due to light time effects in a binary system. According to this paradigm, one would expect what seems like a period increase of about 0.5 s during or soon after the year 2001. Methods. I have continued photometric monitoring through the year 2012, adding 35 new timings of maximum and minimum light. Results. This expected change in period did not occur, which rules out that interpretation of the period variation. As of 2012, the observed timings are about two hours early compared to those predicted by the quadratic ephemeris, but are very close to those predicted by the linear ephemeris. Conclusions. In fact, the period has remained constant for the last 32 years, indicating that the previous epochs of constant period are almost certainly the correct interpretation, though the cause of the period changes is still not clear. Continued photometric monitoring of BW Vul leads to the conclusion that the period changes are abrupt, followed by epochs of constant period lasting between 12 and at least 32 years.