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    Ultra-high-resolution observations of circumstellar K I and C2 around the post-AGB star HD 56126

    Crawford, Ian and Barlow, M.J. (2000) Ultra-high-resolution observations of circumstellar K I and C2 around the post-AGB star HD 56126. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 311 (2), pp. 370-376. ISSN 0035-8711.

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    We have used the Ultra-High-Resolution Facility (UHRF) at the AAT, operating at a resolution of 0.35 km s−1 (FWHM), to observe K I and C2 absorption lines arising in the circumstellar environment of the post-AGB star HD 56126. We find three narrow circumstellar absorption components in K I, two of which are also present in C2. We attribute this velocity structure to discrete shells resulting from multiple mass-loss events from the star. The very high spectral resolution has enabled us to resolve the intrinsic linewidths of these narrow lines for the first time, and we obtain velocity dispersions (b-values) of 0.2–0.3 km s−1 for the K I components, and 0.54 ± 0.03 km s−1 for the strongest (and best defined) C2 component. These correspond to rigorous kinetic temperature upper limits of 211 K for K I and 420 K for C2, although the b-value ratio implies that these two species do not co-exist spatially. The observed degree of rotational excitation of C2 implies low kinetic temperatures (Tk ≈10 K) and high densities (n ≈ 106 to 107 cm−3) within the shell responsible for the main C2 component. Given this low temperature, the line profiles then imply either mildly supersonic turbulence or an unresolved velocity gradient through the shell.


    Item Type: Article
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Natural Sciences
    Depositing User: Sarah Hall
    Date Deposited: 12 Aug 2019 14:08
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:53


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