Central Stars of Planetary Nebulae
In addition to studies of massive stars, some low and intermediate mass stars pass through a phase at the end of their (long) life when a `Planetary Nebula' is being formed, in which late pulses remove surface hydrogen layers, revealing a spectrum reminiscent of massive stars - a subset of these Central Stars of Planetary Nebulae (CSPN) exhibit a Wolf-Rayet spectrum. I have studied a variety of these with Orsola De Marco - e.g. SwSt1.
Although many examples of carbon-sequence Wolf-Rayet CSPNe are known, we have identified the first unambiguous example of a nitrogen-sequence CSPNe, IC 4663. The image of IC4663 to the right shows a greyscale Gemini image ([OIII]) plus a colour HST composite (RGB = Halpha, [OIII], V-band).
- An Ultraviolet to Mid-Infrared Study of the Physical and Wind Properties of HD164270 (WC9) and Comparison to BD+30 3639 [WC9]) Crowther, Morris & Smith 2006
- Physical and Wind Properties of [WC] Stars Crowther, 2007
- IC 4663: The first unambiguous [WN] Wolf-Rayet central star of a planetary nebula Miszalski et al. 2012