CS 22966-043: A bright new field SX phoenicis star similar to those in NGC 5053

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CS 22966-043 is an ultra-short-period pulsating star with high velocity (RV = -266 km s-1) discovered during the course of a search for spectroscopic binaries among blue metal-poor field stars, in progress since 1992. With respect to period (0.0374 days), mean color (〈B - V〉 = 0.24), and metal abundance ([Fe/H] ≈ -2.4), it closely resembles the SX Phoenicis stars found among the blue stragglers in NGC 5053. CS 22966-043 also is the primary of a spectroscopic binary with (probable) period of 430 days. Light-travel time across the projected orbit, as large as 0.0037 days, must be added to the times of observation to combine data obtained in different years with minimal phase dispersion. If CS 22966-043 is, indeed, a blue straggler formed by binary interaction as is now generally believed, then it seems most probable that the interaction was one of mass transfer from the present-day secondary during its post-main-sequence evolution rather than merger of a close binary. The latter option would require that this rare field star was, in addition, a member of a primordial triple system.

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Astronomical Journal

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