Title

Flares on Mira stars?

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1-1-1991

Abstract

I collect 14 cases of flares reported on Mira type stars. These flares typically have an amplitude of over half a magnitude, a rise time of minutes, and a duration of tens of minutes. Nine of the 11 stars represent a normal cross section of the Mira population, while the remaining two are in symbiotic systems (CH Cyg and RX Pup). The flares were observed photographically (five cases), photometrically (three cases), visually (three cases), and with radio telescopes (two cases), while CH Cyg has had flares observed by many techniques. The evidence for the existence of flares on Miras is strong but not definitive. It is possible to hypothesize a variety of background or instrumental effects that could explain all 14 events; however, there is no evidence that suggests the data should be taken at other than face value, and there are good arguments for rejecting the possibility of artifacts. I feel that the current data warrant systematic observational and theoretical investigation of the possibility of flares on Mira stars.

Publication Source (Journal or Book title)

Astrophysical Journal

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