Nonlinear asteroseismology of RR lyrae

L. Molnár, Z. Kolláth, R. Szabó, S. Bryson, K. Kolenberg, F. Mullally, S. E. Thompson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Citations (Scopus)


The observations of the Kepler Space Telescope revealed that fundamental-mode RRLyrae stars may show various radial overtones. The presence of multiple radial modes may allow us to conduct nonlinear asteroseismology: comparison of mode amplitudes and frequency shifts between observations and models. Here we report the detection of three radial modes in the star RRLyr, the eponym of the class, using the Kepler short cadence data: besides the fundamental mode, both the first and the ninth overtones can be derived from the data set. RRLyrae shows period doubling, but switches occasionally to a state where a pattern of six pulsation cycles repeats instead of two. We found hydrodynamic models that show the same three modes and the period-six state, allowing for comparison with the observations.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberL13
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Sep 20 2012


  • stars: individual (RR Lyr)
  • stars: oscillations
  • stars: variables: RR Lyrae

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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    Molnár, L., Kolláth, Z., Szabó, R., Bryson, S., Kolenberg, K., Mullally, F., & Thompson, S. E. (2012). Nonlinear asteroseismology of RR lyrae. Astrophysical Journal Letters, 757(1), [L13].