From the National Radio Astronomy Observatory, news that won’t surprise talkshoppers too much. Interesting though. Large magnetic field links binary pair
Dave Finley, Public Information Officer
Astronomers have found a giant magnetic loop stretched outward from one of the stars making up the famous double-star system Algol. The scientists used an international collection of radio telescopes to discover the feature, which may help explain details of previous observations of the stellar system.
Artist’s conception of Algol star system
with radio image superimposed on grid.
CREDIT: Peterson et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF
“This is the first time we’ve seen a feature like this in the magnetic field of any star other than the Sun,” said William Peterson, of the University of Iowa.
The pair, 93 light-years from Earth, includes a star about 3 times more massive than the Sun and a less-massive companion, orbiting it at a distance of 5.8 million miles, only about six percent of the distance between Earth and the Sun. The newly-discovered magnetic loop emerges from the poles of the less-massive star and stretches outward in the direction of the primary star. As the secondary star orbits its companion, one side — the side with the magnetic loop — constantly faces the more-massive star, just as the same side of our Moon always faces the Earth.