GW Librae

GW Librae (GW Lib) was discovered in 1983 as a 9th magnitude object. GW Lib has also been known as the “Never – Bursting Dwarf Nova” due to its long dormant period.  On April 12, 2007 I noticed GW Lib was at 13.8. The previous night it was <15.7, so I sent off an alert notice to the astronomical community.

Returning to the observatory I noticed GW Lib was starting to brighten. The outburst was still in its early stages so I made frequent observations until clouds ended my observing session.  It rose almost 2 magnitudes in 6 hours to 11.8. The following night it was at magnitude 8.5. This was the first recorded outburst in 24 years since the discovery!

The outburst detection was caught at a very early stage and this enabled many international observatories to obtain optical spectroscopic data of GW Lib. The observations of this superoutburst covered the rising phase, maximum, plateau, and long fading phase. This information revealed a better understanding of the behavior of the accretion disk during the outburst , and pulsations in the white dwarf.

The full duration of this outburst was over 70 days. GW Lib is classed as a WZ Sge- type dwarf nova. The light curve details my visual observations from an early rising stage to end of the outburst.

Back to Light curves


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