9 Aurigae strong evidence for non-radial pulsations

We present further photometric observations of the unusual F0 V star 9 Aurigae and present evidence that this star's radial velocity, spectroscopic line widths and line depths are also variable with the same frequencies as the photometric data (f_1~=0.795 and f_2~=0.345 d^-1). The phases of these si...

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Journal Title: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society Vol. 273; no. 3; pp. 662 - 674
Authors: Edward Guinan, K. Krisciunas, R. F. Griffin, K. D. Luedeke, George McCook
Format: Article
Published: April 1995
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Summary: We present further photometric observations of the unusual F0 V star 9 Aurigae and present evidence that this star's radial velocity, spectroscopic line widths and line depths are also variable with the same frequencies as the photometric data (f_1~=0.795 and f_2~=0.345 d^-1). The phases of these sinusoids are stable over time-scales of longer than one year, though the amplitudes can vary, making the prediction of photometric behaviour impossible. Given that a variety of other explanations have already been discounted (e.g. interactions with a close companion, the existence of a lumpy, orbiting ring of dust, or star spots) and that these variations occur on time-scales an order of magnitude slower than the fundamental radial pulsation period, we have very strong evidence that 9 Aurigae exhibits non-radial g-mode pulsations. Since the power spectrum of the radial velocity data shows frequency f_2 but does not clearly show f_1, the present data suggest that f_2 is associated with a low-degree spherical harmonic L=1 or 2), while f_1 is associated with a higher degree harmonic. 9 Aurigae, along with such stars as gamma Doradus, HD 224638, HD 224945, and HD 164615, appears to constitute a new class of pulsating variables. These stars are to be found at or beyond the cool edge of the Cepheid instability strip in the HR Diagram. Prior to this, only much hotter stars have been shown to exhibit non-radial g-modes.
ISSN: 0035-8711