Luminous variables in the Quintuplet cluster

I.S. Glass1, S. Matsumoto2, B.S. Carter3 and K. Sekiguchi4

1South African Astronomical Observatory, PO Box 9, Observatory 7935, South Africa
2Institute of Astronomy, University of Tokyo, Mitaka, Tokyo 181, Japan
3Carter Observatory, PO Box 2909, Wellington, New Zealand
4Subaru Telescope, NAOJ, 650 North A'ohoku Place, Hilo, HI 96720, USA

Paper: MNRAS, in press


We report observations of variability amongst the stars of the ``Quintuplet" cluster located about 30 pc in projection from the centre of the Galaxy. Two of the five cocoon star members, which may be protostars or peculiar Wolf-Rayets, are seen to vary slowly with moderate amplitude (0.4-0.5 mag). The bright star within the ``Pistol" H ii region, suspected of being a Luminous Blue Variable (LBV), has in fact been found to show variability, confirming its tentative classification. A second nearby presumed LBV also varies. One of the apparent Quintuplet members is likely to be a Mira variable along the same line of sight.

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