eclipsing binary

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A binary star whose orbital plane is sufficiently close to our line of sight for partial or total eclipses of at least one of the components to occur. Regardless of the masses, the star with the higher surface luminosity is called the primary, and primary minimum occurs when it is eclipsed by the fainter secondary. On the basis of the light-curve, eclipsing binaries are divided into three types: Algol stars, Beta Lyrae stars, and W Ursae Majoris stars. Eclipses may also occur in various cataclysmic variables, such as dwarf novae, novae, symbiotic stars, and related types.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics.

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