W Virginis star
setâre-ye W dušizé
Fr.: étoile de type W Virginis
A member of a class of → pulsating stars with a period of 1 to 35 days located in the → instability strip of the → H-R diagram. Also known as type II Cepheid variables, W Virginis stars are typically 1.5 mag fainter than classical Type I Cepheids and have a mass less than that of the Sun. They also exhibit a period-luminosity relation which is distinct, but works in a similar way to the relation for Type I Cepheids. Hence W Virginis stars can also be used to measure Galactic and extragalactic distances.
W, alphabetical letter; → variable star designation; → Virgo; → star.