Geometrical constraints on the hot spot in beta lyrae

Jamie R. Lomax, Jennifer L. Hoffman, Nicholas M. Elias, Fabienne A. Bastien, Bruce D. Holenstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


We present results from six years of recalibrated and new spectropolarimetric data taken with the University of Wisconsin's Half-Wave Spectropolarimeter and six years of new data taken with the photoelastic modulating polarimeter at the Flower and Cook Observatory of beta Lyrae. Combining these data with polarimetric data from the literature allows us to characterize the intrinsic BVRI polarized light curves. A repeatable discrepancy of 0.245days (approximately 6hr) between the secondary minima in the total light curve and the polarization curve in the V band, with similar behavior in the other bands, may represent the first direct evidence for an accretion hot spot on the disk edge.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number59
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 1 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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