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A newly identified Luminous Blue Variable in the galactic starburst cluster Westerlund 1

Clark, J. S. and Negueruela, I. (2004). A newly identified Luminous Blue Variable in the galactic starburst cluster Westerlund 1. Astronomy & Astrophysics, 413(2) L15-L18.

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We present observations of the massive transitional star W243 in Westerlund 1 . We find an apparent spectral type of early-mid A from our data, in contrast to an earlier classification of B2I, made from data obtained in 1981. The concurrent development of a rich emission line spectrum suggests a very high mass loss rate; the continued presence of He I emission suggesting that the underlying star remains significantly hotter than implied by its apparent spectral type. We suggest that W243 is a Luminous Blue Variable undergoing an eruptive phase, leading to an extreme mass loss rate and the formation of a pseudo photosphere.

Item Type: Journal Article
Copyright Holders: 2004 ESO
ISSN: 1432-0746
Keywords: stellar evolution; variable stars; stellar winds, outflows; supergiants
Academic Unit/Department: Science > Physical Sciences
Interdisciplinary Research Centre: Centre for Earth, Planetary, Space and Astronomical Research (CEPSAR)
Item ID: 13112
Depositing User: Astrid Peterkin
Date Deposited: 12 Feb 2009 17:01
Last Modified: 23 Feb 2016 21:16
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