Polarimetry of CH Cygni
Variable linear polarization has been detected in CH Cyg. Observations in 1977–79 (UBV) and 1979–80 (UBVRI) are presented. The amount of polarisation increases towards ultraviolet and the observed values range from 0.34 to 1.85% in the ultraviolet, and 0.04 to 0.68% in the yellow light. In the red and infrared observations the polarizationwas typically less than 0.1 %. Daring the interval September 1977 – February 1978 and in May 1980 a second component of polarization, with different direction and wavelength dependence, was present, resulting in a strong rotation of the position angle as a function of wavelength. The R and I observations of May 1980 (PR ≅ 0.4 %, PI ≅ 0.5%) showed that the second component was increasing towards the infrared. The peculiar wavelength dependence of polarization and position angle could be explained by variations in particle size and scattering geometry in a complicated dust envelope around the M giant. Another hypothesis is that the component of polarization increasing towards the ultraviolet is produced by electron scattering in an extended envelope of a hot companion and the second component by transient dust envelope of the M giant.