What Are Variable Stars and How Many Different Types Of Variable Stars Are There That Change In Brightness?

Three types of variable stars grow brighter and dimmer at regular intervals: Cepheids, RR Lyrae, and long-period variables (LPVs).

These stars are probably between old age and death.

Cepheids take anywhere from about 1 to 70 days to go from their brightest to their dimmest and back to their brightest.

The brightness of RR Lyrae varies during regular cycles that average less than 1 day.

LPVs’ brightness fluctuates at irregular intervals longer than 80 days.

The cycle for the LPV named Mira, for example, takes more than 300 days.

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

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