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Astron. Astrophys. 327, 231-239 (1997)

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The cataclysmic variable WW Ceti: physical parameters
and periodic phenomena *

C. Tappert 1, 2, W.F. Wargau ** 3, R.W. Hanuschik 2 and N. Vogt 1

1 Astrophysics Group, P.Universidad Católica, Casilla 104, Santiago 22, Chile
2 Astronomisches Institut, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, D-44780 Bochum, Germany
3 Dept. of Mathematics and Astronomy, UNISA, P.O. Box 392, 0001 Pretoria, RSA

Received 25 April 1997 / Accepted 30 May 1997


We present spectroscopic and photometric data of the cataclysmic variable WW Cet. By comparison of our radial velocity data with earlier published ones we are able to restrict possible orbital periods to the two choices 0.175 806 90(25)d and 0.175 289 02(35)d. We derive as inclination of the system [FORMULA], which is supported by the fact that the photometric lightcurve shows periodic phenomena folded on the orbital period. These features are identified as a main and an intermediate hump which vary strongly with the brightness level of the system. Our derived periods place them at very unusual phases which are not conform with the normal explanation that the humps are caused by a hot spot which is seen from both front and back. However, our spectroscopy in quiescence indicates that these phasings are real and do not result from an error in the calculation of the ephemerides.

Key words: accretion disks - stars: cataclysmic variables - stars: individual: WW Cet

* based on observations at the South African Observatory in Sutherland, South Africa, and at the European Southern Observatory on La Silla, Chile
** Walter Wargau passed away in 1996 from a long-lasting illness.

Send offprint requests to: C. Tappert, Bochum address

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© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1997

Online publication: April 8, 1998