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J.J. Feldmeier (NOAO / YSU), S.B. Howell (WIYN / NOAO), J.C. Mihos (CWRU), M.E. Everett (PSI)
How likely is it for variable stars to stay variable? Although many bright variable stars are known to pulsate stably for as long as they have been observed, there are some notable exceptions: Macri, Sasselov, & Stanek (2001) report the disappearance of variability from a Cepheid star first detected by Hubble, and the photometric variability amplitude of Polaris has been declining for the last sixty years. Additionally, as yet, there is little data on the persistence of milli-mag variability seen in many stars. This question has important significance for future synoptic surveys such as the Pan-STARRS project, and the LSST.
We report on a stellar variability survey using the Case Western Burrell Schmidt telescope of a stellar field observed in a similar way five years earlier, and using similar reduction and analysis techniques. Our preliminary results are that the pulsating variables originally found in this field were easily recovered, but a fraction of the original unclassified variables in the field that had milli-mag photometric variations now appear to be consistent with non-variability. We will also discuss the fraction of "new variables" discovered in our second epoch, and the implications of this survey.
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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #4
© 2005. The American Astronomical Soceity.