Astrophysics (Index)About

luminous blue variable

(LBV, S Doradus variable)
(type of extremely bright variable stars)

A luminous blue variable (LBV or S Doradus variable after an example in Large Magellanic Cloud) is a classification of variable star that is extremely bright and rare, consisting of the most luminous stars known, with luminosities hundreds of thousands times that of the Sun. They are also among the most massive stars, up to 100 solar masses. Some experience outbursts (LBV outbursts) bright enough to be mistaken for supernovae. In addition to LBVs in the Milky Way, they have been identified in other galaxies such as the Magellanic clouds, Andromeda, and Triangulum Galaxy and have been used to estimate distances to the latter two galaxies. Explanation of their structure and evolution continues to be fodder for research.

(star type,variable)
Further reading:
LBVLBV 1806-20possibly the only use as a prefix
VarVar. A-1used for some in M31 and M33