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Astron. Astrophys. 351, 607-618 (1999)

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TT Arietis: 1985-1999 accretion disc behaviour

Z. Kraicheva, V. Stanishev, V. Genkov and L. Iliev

Institute of Astronomy, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, 72 Tsarigradsko Shouse Blvd., 1784 Sofia, Bulgaria (zk@astro.bas.bg)

Received 24 June 1999 / Accepted 20 September 1999


Results of a long-term (1985-1999) photometric study of the VY Scl novalike TT Ari and CCD spectroscopic observations of the star in the region of H[FORMULA] are presented. Photoelectric UBV observations carried out at Rozhen and Belogradchik observatories confirmed [FORMULA] 6 years cyclical variability of the accretion disc luminosity in high state found by frequency analysis of 70 years long light curve. The data show that the color indexes vary with the same cycle length and that in the maximum of the cycle TT Ari becomes bluer. The analysis of the "3-hour" modulations in 1995-1998 data indicates a replacement of the [FORMULA] "negative superhump" by [FORMULA] "positive" one in 1997. The new wave remains active for at least a year. Based on 45 runs obtained from 1987 to 1998 in U and B bands the behaviour of the "20-min" quasi-periodic oscillations and the flickering during both "negative" and "positive superhumps" regimes is investigated. All runs show strong flickering activity and power spectra with a typical red noise shape. It is found that H[FORMULA] profiles and the observational characteristics of the flickering are different after 1997 when the "positive superhump" regime started. Generally, the activity of the flickering decreased by [FORMULA] 50% in 1997-1998. The autoregressive analysis suggests that the "20-min" QPOs observed in TT Ari light curves are most probably generated by some stochastic process such as the flickering.

Key words: accretion, accretion disks – stars: individual: TT Ari – stars: novae, cataclysmic variables – X-rays: stars

Send offprint requests to: Z. Kraicheva

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© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1999

Online publication: November 3, 1999