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Characterizing Four Subsets of Kepler O’Connell Effect Binaries

Presentation #308.03 in the session Binaries at Different Evolutionary Stages.

Published onJun 29, 2022
Characterizing Four Subsets of Kepler O’Connell Effect Binaries

We have used the Kepler Eclipsing Binary Catalog to better understand the enigmatic O’Connell effect – the presence of unequally bright maxima in eclipsing binary light curves – by selecting a sample of 258 KEBC systems showing the phenomenon [1]. In the process of analyzing these systems, we have identified four classes of systems that stand out from others in our sample, either because of the unusual features their light curves display or the character of their component stars. The first class of 75 systems displays strong temporal variation in their light curves. The second class of ~34 systems features eclipse minima that are asymmetric. The third class includes ~9 systems showing a concave-up region between the eclipse minima, giving the light curve the appearance of an eclipsing binary signal superimposed on a sinusoid. The final class consists of the sole white dwarf in our sample.

Our goal is to determine how these four classes’ characteristics differ from the rest of our sample. To that end, we will run statistical tests between systems belonging to each class with the rest of our sample. These tests include the K–S test to determine if the two samples are drawn from the same population, and Spearman’s ρ coefficient to determine correlations between the characteristics. Ultimately, the analysis of these tests’ results provides insight into the similarities and differences of these classes compared to our sample. This insight gives a clearer picture of what physical processes occur in these systems and additional observational signatures that may be related to the O’Connell effect.

[1] https://www.aavso.org/oconnell-effect-target-list

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