50 Years Superhumps in Cataclysmic Variables and Elsewhere

December 6, 2022

Registration is Free to all participants



Superhumps are semi-periodic variations in the light curves of different classes of binaries, with periods a few percent larger (“positive superhumps”) or smaller (“negative superhumps”) than the orbital period.

The first superhumps were detected by Dr. Nikolaus Vogt in December 1972 with the ESO 1-m telescope at ESO La Silla observatory, during a superoutburst of the dwarf nova VW Hyi (see N. Vogt 1974, A&A 36, 369).

During the following years, the presence of superhumps during superoutbursts of all SU-UMa type dwarf novae was confirmed. An important step towards the understanding of this phenomenon was the detection that the accretion disk of the eclipsing dwarf nova Z Cha was not circular during a superoutburst, but deformed into an elliptical shape. Since then, superhumps have played a mayor role in determining binary parameters and in understanding the evolution of close binary systems.

We want to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the discovery on Nikolaus-day (6th December) in a hybrid mode, i.e. most local participants could be present in the ESO Vitacura office, while most foreign persons can assist via on-line live mode. The program comprises mainly invited talks of about 30 minutes each, but also shorter contributed ones. We will have a lunch break, several coffee breaks and will finish with a social event (BBQ) in the garden of the ESO premises.