Luminosity: 6.92 solar luminosities Mass: 3.17 solar masses Tidal distortions also result in “gravity darkening” effects, whereby in a significant number of images of Algol B, the edge or “limb” of the image is actually brighter than the center. When a star exceeds its Roche lobe, the material outside the lobe falls off into the companion star’s Roche lobe. (2008) for more information on these eclipsing binaries. 2.09) in Orion and Kochab (Beta Ursae Minoris, mag. There are many variable stars known throughout the heavens, but Algol might well be the most famous variable star … Copy this URL to share: Mirfak lies along the imaginary line extended from Gamma to Delta Cassiopeiae, and forms a triangle with Algol and the bright Almach, Gamma Andromedae. Arthur: Star of Bootes, situated in the extension of the tail of Ursa Major. After observing the star to determine the period of its light variations, he suggested that Algol was what we now know as an eclipsing binary, i.e. 2.23), the westernmost star of Orion’s Belt, Alphecca (Alpha Coronae Borealis, mag. The images vary in quality, but the best have a resolution of 0.5 milliarcseconds, or approximately 200 times better than the Hubble Space Telescope. 2.17) in Centaurus, Aspidiske (Iota Carinae, mag. 2.12). The other three stars, all located in the vicinity of Algol, are Pi Persei (π Persei, Gorgonea Secunda), a white main sequence star with an apparent magnitude of 4.7, Rho Persei (ρ Persei, Gorgonea Tertia), a reddish (class M) bright giant with a visual magnitude of 3.39, and Omega Persei (ω Persei, Gorgonea Quarta), an orange giant with a magnitude of 4.6. Image: Dr Fabien Baron, Dept. This is because our eyes, especially in low light conditions, cannot distinguish colour very well. What distinguishes Algol variables from, e.g. In 2003, the General Catalogue of Variable Stars listed more than 3,500, which was 9% of all known variables. Algol, Epsilon Persei and Almach, image: Wikisky. Algol’s eclipses can be observed without a telescope. Algol, Beta Persei, is a bright multiple star located in Perseus. Perseus and Caput Medusæ, plate 6 in Urania’s Mirror, a set of celestial cards accompanied by A familiar treatise on astronomy … by Jehoshaphat Aspin. Algol – the “demon” star The shape and timing of the eclipses gives the shape and size of the stars. Star - Star - Eclipsing binaries: An eclipsing binary consists of two close stars moving in an orbit so placed in space in relation to Earth that the light of one can at times be hidden behind the other. Initially, the star system seemed to evolve in a manner that defied established beliefs about stellar evolution. Algol was one of the first non-nova variable stars ever discovered. 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