SALT HRS discovery of a long-period double-degenerate binary in the planetary nebula NGC 1360

B. Miszalski*, R. Manick, J. Mikolajewska, K. Iłkiewicz, D. Kamath, H. Van Winckel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Whether planetary nebulae (PNe) are predominantly the product of binary stellar evolution as some population synthesis models (PSM) suggest remains an open question. Around 50 short-period binary central stars (P ~ 1 d) are known, but with only four with measured orbital periods over 10 d, our knowledge is severely incomplete. Here we report on the first discovery from a systematic Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) High Resolution Spectrograph (HRS) survey for long-period binary central stars. We find a 142 d orbital period from radial velocities of the central star of NGC1360, HIP 16566. NGC1360 appears to be the product of common-envelope (CE) evolution, with nebula features similar to post-CE PNe, albeit with an orbital period considerably longer than expected to be typical of post-CE PSM. The most striking feature is a newly identified ring of candidate low-ionization structures. Previous spatiokinematic modelling of the nebula gives a nebula inclination of 30° ± 10°, and assuming the binary nucleus is coplanar with the nebula, multiwavelength observations best fit a more massive, evolved white dwarf (WD) companion. A WD companion in a 142 d orbit is not the focus of many PSM, making NGC1360 a valuable system with which to improve future PSM work. HIP 16566 is amongst many central stars in which large radial velocity variability was found by low-resolution surveys. The discovery of its binary nature may indicate long-period binaries may be more common than PSM models predict.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2275-2287
Number of pages13
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volume473
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018

Keywords

  • Binaries: spectroscopic
  • Planetary nebulae: general
  • Planetary nebulae: individual: NGC1360
  • Stars: AGB and post-AGB
  • Techniques: radial velocities
  • White dwarfs

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