Dome A on the Antarctic plateau is likely one of the best observing sites on Earth thanks to the excellent atmospheric conditions present at the site during the long polar winter night. We present high-cadence time-series aperture photometry of 10,000 stars with i < 14.5 mag located in a 23 deg2 region centered on the south celestial pole. The photometry was obtained with one of the CSTAR telescopes during 128 days of the 2008 Antarctic winter. We used this photometric data set to derive site statistics for Dome A and to search for variable stars. Thanks to the nearly uninterrupted synoptic coverage, we found six times as many variables as previous surveys with similarmagnitude limits. We detected 157 variable stars, of which 55% were unclassified, 27% were likely binaries, and 17% were likely pulsating stars. The latter category includes δ Scuti, γ Doradus, and RR Lyrae variables. One variable may be a transiting exoplanet.
- site testing
- stars: variables: general