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35th Star in History of Astronomy is Detected by Miss Joanna Mackle.


Another new star has been discovered at the University Observatory. It was announced last night that Miss Joanna C. S. Mackie of the Observatory staff, in the middle of her examination of photographs of the Milky Way taken recently, has detected a new star.

The position of the woomer is night assembled 16 hours, 49 minutes, 30 seconds.

Miss Cannon, of the observatory staff, has studied the spectrum of the new star, and finds it to be characteristic of a nova in its early stage.

Between December 4 and 6 the new star increased rapidly in brightness from the 16th magnitude, or fainter, to a maximum of about 6.5. Since that time it has undergone marked fluctuations in brightness and its present magnitude is only about 8.5. It is, therefore, a great deal too faint to be seen with the naked eye.

Other observatories with large instruments are being asked by the Harvard Observatory to determine detailed characteristics of the spectrum of the new star and are informed that, while it is now far to the west in the evening, it will soon be accessible for study in the early morning. It is explained at the Observatory that the discovery just made is the 35th of its kind in the history of astronomy and the 19th to the credit of the Harvard College Observatory. In the four hundred years preceding 1886 only nine new stars were detected. In the interval between 1886 and Miss Mackie's discovery 25 had been located, 18 of them by the Harvard staff and the other seven by observatories in other places.

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