Evidence for quasiperiodicity in orbital period modulation of WW Cygni

  • Alexandru Pop
  • Maria Crăciun
  • Gabriela Raluca Mocanu
  • Călin Vamoş
Original Article
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Abstract

The Algol type binary system WW Cygni is known to display an intricate orbital period variability phenomenon which consists in the presence of an alternating component superposed on a secular trend. The alternating component clearly deviates from a strictly periodic pattern. In the present paper we studied WW Cyg using a data set consisting of 309 times of primary minimum, free of outliers, covering a time base of 113.8 yr. We investigated these timing data using periodicity detection methods relying on both amplitude spectrum and enhanced self-correlation (ESC) methods through Monte Carlo simulations. The problem of estimation of the statistical significance in the ESC method was further developed. The multiperiodicity of the \(O-C\) residuals was investigated via iterative prewhitening using three types of models consisting of polynomial (P) + multiperiodic (MP) terms, P + light travel time effect (LTTE) terms, and P + MP terms + LTTE terms. The interpretation of the results led us to the following two hypotheses: (i) a quasiperiodic modulation at a time scale of about 46 yr induced by the cyclic magnetic activity occurring in the cool secondary component of WW Cyg, or (ii) the coexistence of a periodic modulation with a period of 50.41 yr related to the presence of an unseen compact stellar object of at least \(2.22~\mbox{M}_{\odot }\) in the system and a quasiperiodic modulation at a time scale of about 19.7 yr, caused by the mechanism (i).

Keywords

Binaries: eclipsing Stars: individual: WW Cyg Methods: data analysis, statistical 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alexandru Pop
    • 1
  • Maria Crăciun
    • 2
  • Gabriela Raluca Mocanu
    • 1
  • Călin Vamoş
    • 2
  1. 1.Astronomical Institute, Astronomical Observatory Cluj-NapocaRomanian AcademyCluj-NapocaRomania
  2. 2.“T. Popoviciu” Institute of Numerical AnalysisRomanian AcademyCluj-NapocaRomania

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