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Possible Discovery of a Very Short Period, Low-Accretion Rate Polar

Presentation #550.04 in the session “Variable Stars”.

Published onJan 11, 2021
Possible Discovery of a Very Short Period, Low-Accretion Rate Polar

We report on the likely discovery of a Low-Accretion Rate Polar (LARP) whose orbital period is inferred to be only 85.55 minutes. The object, EPIC228682495, was first discovered in a long cadence dataset with the K2 Space Telescope and later followed up with short-cadence photometry using the PESTO camera at the Observatoire Mont Megantic. We interpret the largely sinusoidal variations in the light curve to be the result of very large modulations due to cyclotron beaming which occur at the orbital period (assuming that the white dwarf’s spin is synchronized with the binary’s rotation). The implications arising from the fact that this polar has a period so close to the orbital period minimum for Cataclysmic Variables are also discussed.


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