In today’s paper, the authors study how the periods of two black hole x-ray binaries are changing. They find that the periods are decaying faster than expected based on standard theoretical arguments.
Cataclysmic variables are binary star systems where one of the stars—a white dwarf—devours its main sequence partner over time. Kepler proves yet again that it can find a lot more than just exoplanets by identifying a cataclysmic variable with a period of less than an hour.
The progenitors of a special type of cataclysmic variable, AM CVn, and possibly supernovae have been found.
The authors identify two distinct sequences of blue straggler stars in the globular cluster NGC 392. They hypothesize that one branch is formed via stellar mergers and the other is binary stars undergoing mass transfer. This is the second globular cluster found to possess this double sequence.
Dust traps may be the key to forming Kepler-16b and other circumbinary planets.
Shapiro time delays are one of the four tests of general relativity possible in the solar system. Astronomers can use these timing delays to measure properties of binary pulsar systems.
A new brown dwarf system has been discovered only 2 parsec away; Gillon et al. analyze its light curve to study clouds on the surfaces of these stars.
Pakmor et al. propose a new mechanism to make Type 1a supernova explosions from a pair of white dwarfs.
By looking for variations in the observed periods for eclipsing binary stars, astronomers have found evidence that a sizable fraction of these systems are actually systems of three or more stars.