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Temperature Variations from HST Imagery and Spectroscopy of NGC 7009

  • R. H. Rubin (a1) (a2), N. J. Bhatt (a1), R. J. Dufour (a3), B. A. Buckalew (a3), M. J. Barlow (a4), X.-W. Liu (a4), P. J. Storey (a4), B. Balick (a5), G. J. Ferland (a6), J. P. Harrington (a7) and P. G. Martin (a8)...

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We obtained new HST/STIS long-slit spectra and WFPC2 imagery of the planetary nebula NGC 7009 in order to obtain high spatial resolution of the intrinsic flux ratio [O III] 4364/5008, which is a well-known diagnostic for electron temperature (T e ). Our primary purpose was to quantify T e variations across the nebula. We address whether the observational data support the possibility that the [fractional] mean-square T e variation (t 2) (Peimbert 1967) in NGC 7009 may be as large as ~0.1. Such large values are required to reconcile the “abundance dichotomy” by T e variations alone. The abundance dichotomy (discussed by Liu at greater length elsewhere in this volume) refers to the significantly higher heavy element abundances derived from optical recombination lines (e.g., a factor of ~5 for NGC 7009, Liu et al. 1995) compared with the corresponding values deduced from collisionally-excited lines.

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References

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Liu, X., Storey, P.J., Barlow, M.J., & Clegg, R.E.S. 1995, MNRAS, 272, 369
Peimbert, M. 1967, ApJ, 150, 825

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