Thursday, January 14, 2016

Tabby's Star - Stay Tuned

I haven't written anything about Tabby's star (KIC 8462852) on here yet, although there was a discussion on the Unseen Podcast a few weeks ago. The latest is a preprint of a paper by Bradley Schaefer, in which he went in detail over the historical data for Tabby's Star and found a surprising result - the magnitude of the star has been steadily dimming over the time of the photographic record he use - the Harvard sky survey photographic plates, which date back to 1890. Depending on what you assume, the dimming is as fast as 0.2 magnitudes per century. Fast - a century is a blink of an eye in the life of a star, so this sort of rapid decline in brightness is not understood.

Anyway, interviewing Dr. Schaefer very soon, and you will all be able to hear what he says. I'll update this post when it's out. There is a bunch of other stuff to cover, like the initial SETI searches and the lack of IR excess.

Update: interview concluded, out soon. Subscribe to to get it when it comes out.

Here's the podcast blog page: