Part 1: Occulting Stars

ecbin sim

In this section you will use a simple program that simulates a binary star system. You are able to change many characteristics of the system, including the stars' temperatures and masses, as well as the characteristics of their orbit around each other. The program produces a lightcurve for the binary star system based on the parameters you select.

Eclipsing Binary Star Simulator

Experiment with the simulator and use it to answer the questions below. Try to be systematic with the different settings you test in order to get the best understanding. Some settings may have only a slight effect on the lightcurve - you can push the zoom in button to see the result more clearly.

•аHow would you determine the relative temperatures of the stars in an eclipsing binary from only its lightcurve?

•аUsing only the lightcurve, how would you determine the relative sizes (radii) of the stars in an eclipsing binary?

HINT: You will likely find that changing the orbital characteristics or the observing band does not have any noticeable effect on your answers.

ай 2017 University of Iowa