David Turner

The Remarkable 2016 Maximum of the Pulsating Class M Supergiant Mu Cephei

Class M supergiant variables are relatively unstudied, although most pulsate like Cepheids and obey a precise period-luminosity relation. As predicted predecessors of core collapse supernovae, they might display portents of future explosions in their light signatures, two easily-viewed examples being Betelgeuse and Mu Cephei, multi-mode pulsators with Mu Cep being more luminous. Its 2016 rise to maximum light was curiously late and exceptionally bright, with possible ringing near maximum.

David TurnerDavid Turner was inspired towards a lifelong interest and career in astronomy by a visit to the David Dunlap Observatory at age seven, and a grade eight teacher’s assignment on Polaris. A long-time member of RASC and AAVSO, his expertise lies in studies of star clusters, interstellar extinction, and Cepheids, with a newfound interest in M supergiant pulsators.