• Question: What is your favourite example of a binary star?

    Asked by ILikeQuantumPhysics to Heidi on 21 Nov 2019.
    • Photo: Heidi Thiemann

      Heidi Thiemann answered on 21 Nov 2019:

      I’m going to cheat a bit and say my favourite binary system is actually a system of FIVE stars! A colleague of mine, Marcus, discovered 5 stars orbiting each other, called a “doubly eclipsing quintuple system”, quite a name!
      What’s really cool about this system is there’s actually two sets of binary stars, which orbit each other, as well as a fifth star which orbits one of the binary stars. The whole system is about the size of our Solar System, and it’s a great example of the amazing things you find in space.