Astronomy and Astrophysics, volume 538A, 24-24 (2012/2-1)
Thermal infrared properties of classical and type II cepheids. Diffraction limited 10 µm imaging with VLT/VISIR.
GALLENNE A., KERVELLA P. and MERAND A.
Abstract (from CDS):
We present new thermal infrared (IR) photometry and spectral energy distributions (SEDs) of eight classical Cepheids (type I) and three type II Cepheids, using VISIR thermal IR photometric measurements, supplemented with literature data. We used the BURST mode of the instrument to get diffraction-limited images at 8.59, 11.25, and 11.85µm. The SEDs show a IR excess at wavelengths longer than 10µm in ten of the eleven stars. We tentatively attribute these excesses to circumstellar emission created by mass loss from the Cepheids. On the basis of some hypotheses for the dust composition, we estimate a total mass of the envelope ranging from 10–10 to 10–8M☉. We also detect a spatially extended emission around AX Cir, X Sgr, W Sgr, Y Oph, and U Car, while we do not resolve the circumstellar envelope (CSE) of the other stars. The averaged circumstellar envelope brightnesses relative to the stellar photosphere are α(AX Cir)=13.8±2.5%, α(X Sgr)=7.9±1.4%, α(W Sgr)=3.8±0.6%, α(Y Oph)=15.1±1.4%, and α(U Car)=16.3±1.4% at 8.59µm. With this study, we extend the number of classical Cepheids with detected CSEs from 9 to 14, confirming that at least a large fraction of all Cepheids are experiencing significant mass loss. The presence of these CSEs may also impact the future use of Cepheids as standard candles at near and thermal infrared wavelengths.
circumstellar matter - stars: variables: Cepheids - stars: mass-loss - stars: imaging - infrared: stars
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