AN INFRARED NEBULA ASSOCIATED WITH δ CEPHEI: EVIDENCE OF MASS LOSS? Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • We present the discovery of an infrared nebula around the Cepheid prototype delta Cephei and its hot companion HD 213307. Large scale (~2.1x10^4 AU) nebulosity is detected at 5.8, 8.0, 24 and 70 um. Surrounding the two stars, the 5.8 and 8.0 um emission is largely attributable to Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon (PAH) emission swept from the ISM by a wind originating from delta Cephei and/or its companion. Stochastically heated small dust grains are the most likely source of the 24 and 70 um extended emission. The 70 um emission, in particular, resembles a bow shock aligned in the direction of the proper motion of delta Cephei. This discovery supports the hypothesis that delta Cephei may be currently losing mass, at a rate in the range ~ 5x10^-9 to 6x10^-8 Mo/yr.

authors

  • Marengo, M
  • Evans, NR
  • Barmby, P
  • Matthews, LD
  • Bono, G
  • Welch, Douglas L
  • Romaniello, M
  • Huelsman, D
  • Su, KYL
  • Fazio, GG

publication date

  • December 20, 2010