EUVE_J1429-38.0: A New Magnetic Cataclysmic Variable

N. Craig (1), S.B. Howell, M.M. Sirk, R.F. Malina

1) Center for EUV Astrophysics, 2150 Kittredge Street, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720

The Astrophysical Journal Letters, 457, L91, 1996


The source EUVE_J1429-38.0 was discovered serendipitously by the Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer (EUVE) satellite on 1993 March 5. Optical spectroscopy confirms a cataclysmic-variable-type optical counterpart for the source, showing Balmer, He I and Ca emission, as well as strong He II emission. The optical spectrum, the apparent high/low state behavior, and possible weak cyclotron humps visible in the spectrum indicate that this star is likely to be an AM Herculis system, but the possibility of being a DQ Her, or an unlocked AM Her system can not be excluded. Analysis of the highly modulated EUVE photometry yields a period of 2 hr 22 min, which we conclude is the binary orbital period. In addition, a 57 min period is also present. An orbital period of 2.5 hr would make EUVE_J1429-38.0 only the third known AM Her system within the cataclysmic variable period gap, all three of which were discovered through EUV observations.

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