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Two AM CVn systems in outburst - V406 Hya and SDSS J0129+3842

ATEL # 2334; T. Barclay (Armagh Observatory/MSSL-UCL), G. Ramsay (Armagh Observatory), D. Steeghs (Warwick), P. Wheatley (Warwick), S. Rosen (Leicester)
on 5 Dec 2009; 17:26 UT
Distributed as an Instant Email Notice (Nova)
Password Certification: Gavin Ramsay (

Subjects: Request for Observations, Binaries, Cataclysmic Variables, Nova, Variables

We are conducting a campaign of monitoring AM CVn systems visible from the Northern Hemisphere once a week using the Liverpool Telescope on La Palma. On the night of 3/4 December 2009 we observed two of the AM CVn systems to be in a state of outburst, V406 Hya (RA=09:05:54.79, Dec=-05:36:08.6) and SDSS J0129+3842 (RA=01:29:40.06, Dec=+38:42:10.4). V406 Hya (also known as 2003aw) has a typical quiescent brightness of g~20.2. At 02:21UT we observed this system at a g magnitude of 14.80+-0.02. We observed SDSS J0129+3842 to be at g=16.81+-0.02 at 22:58UT, 3.2 mag. brighter than the typical quiescent brightness of g~20.05+-0.05. We observed this system again a day later at 22:28UT on 4 December 2009 at a brightness of g=15.13+-0.02. Both these outbursts are above ~5 magnitudes and are among the highest amplitude outbursts observed in AM CVn systems. Our observations are continuing and we encourage further observations.

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