The long-period Galactic Cepheid RS Puppis

P. Kervella, A. Mérand, L. Szabados, P. Fouqué, D. Bersier, E. Pompei, G. Perrin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Context.The bright southern Cepheid RS Pup is surrounded by a circumstellar nebula reflecting the light from the central star. The propagation of the light variations from the Cepheid inside the dusty nebula creates spectacular light echoes that can be observed up to large distances from the star itself. This phenomenon is currently unique in this class of stars.Aims.For this relatively distant star, the trigonometric parallax available from Hipparcos has a low accuracy. A careful observation of the light echoes has the potential to provide a very accurate, geometric distance to RS Pup.Methods.We obtained a series of CCD images of RS Pup with the NTT/EMMI instrument covering the variation period of the star ( d), allowing us to track the progression of the light wavefronts over the nebular features surrounding the star. We measured precisely the phase lag of the photometric variation in several regions of the circumstellar nebula.Results.From our phase lag measurements, we derive a geometric distance of 1992 28 pc to RS Pup. This distance is affected by a total uncertainty of 1.4%, and corresponds to a parallax of = 0.502 0.007 mas and a distance modulus of = 11.50 0.03.Conclusions.The geometric distance we derive is by far the most accurate to a Cepheid, and among the most accurate to any star. RS Pup appears both as somewhat neglected and particularly promising to investigate the mass-loss history of Cepheids. Thanks to its highly accurate distance, it is also bound to become an important luminosity fiducial for the long period part of the period-luminosity diagram.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)167-178
Number of pages12
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Volume480
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2008

Fingerprint

stars
nebulae
parallax
echoes
time lag
luminosity
diagram
progressions
charge coupled devices
coverings
diagrams
histories
history
propagation

Keywords

  • ISM: dust, extinction
  • ISM: reflection nebulae
  • Stars: circumstellar matter
  • Stars: distances
  • Stars: individual: RS Pup
  • Stars: variables: Cepheids

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

Kervella, P., Mérand, A., Szabados, L., Fouqué, P., Bersier, D., Pompei, E., & Perrin, G. (2008). The long-period Galactic Cepheid RS Puppis. Astronomy and Astrophysics, 480(1), 167-178. https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20078961

The long-period Galactic Cepheid RS Puppis. / Kervella, P.; Mérand, A.; Szabados, L.; Fouqué, P.; Bersier, D.; Pompei, E.; Perrin, G.

In: Astronomy and Astrophysics, Vol. 480, No. 1, 03.2008, p. 167-178.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Kervella, P, Mérand, A, Szabados, L, Fouqué, P, Bersier, D, Pompei, E & Perrin, G 2008, 'The long-period Galactic Cepheid RS Puppis', Astronomy and Astrophysics, vol. 480, no. 1, pp. 167-178. https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20078961
Kervella P, Mérand A, Szabados L, Fouqué P, Bersier D, Pompei E et al. The long-period Galactic Cepheid RS Puppis. Astronomy and Astrophysics. 2008 Mar;480(1):167-178. https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20078961
Kervella, P. ; Mérand, A. ; Szabados, L. ; Fouqué, P. ; Bersier, D. ; Pompei, E. ; Perrin, G. / The long-period Galactic Cepheid RS Puppis. In: Astronomy and Astrophysics. 2008 ; Vol. 480, No. 1. pp. 167-178.
@article{8580c3dd87dd487d89a2e8336c4483a8,
title = "The long-period Galactic Cepheid RS Puppis",
abstract = "Context.The bright southern Cepheid RS Pup is surrounded by a circumstellar nebula reflecting the light from the central star. The propagation of the light variations from the Cepheid inside the dusty nebula creates spectacular light echoes that can be observed up to large distances from the star itself. This phenomenon is currently unique in this class of stars.Aims.For this relatively distant star, the trigonometric parallax available from Hipparcos has a low accuracy. A careful observation of the light echoes has the potential to provide a very accurate, geometric distance to RS Pup.Methods.We obtained a series of CCD images of RS Pup with the NTT/EMMI instrument covering the variation period of the star ( d), allowing us to track the progression of the light wavefronts over the nebular features surrounding the star. We measured precisely the phase lag of the photometric variation in several regions of the circumstellar nebula.Results.From our phase lag measurements, we derive a geometric distance of 1992 28 pc to RS Pup. This distance is affected by a total uncertainty of 1.4{\%}, and corresponds to a parallax of = 0.502 0.007 mas and a distance modulus of = 11.50 0.03.Conclusions.The geometric distance we derive is by far the most accurate to a Cepheid, and among the most accurate to any star. RS Pup appears both as somewhat neglected and particularly promising to investigate the mass-loss history of Cepheids. Thanks to its highly accurate distance, it is also bound to become an important luminosity fiducial for the long period part of the period-luminosity diagram.",
keywords = "ISM: dust, extinction, ISM: reflection nebulae, Stars: circumstellar matter, Stars: distances, Stars: individual: RS Pup, Stars: variables: Cepheids",
author = "P. Kervella and A. M{\'e}rand and L. Szabados and P. Fouqu{\'e} and D. Bersier and E. Pompei and G. Perrin",
year = "2008",
month = "3",
doi = "10.1051/0004-6361:20078961",
language = "English",
volume = "480",
pages = "167--178",
journal = "Astronomy and Astrophysics",
issn = "0004-6361",
publisher = "EDP Sciences",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The long-period Galactic Cepheid RS Puppis

AU - Kervella, P.

AU - Mérand, A.

AU - Szabados, L.

AU - Fouqué, P.

AU - Bersier, D.

AU - Pompei, E.

AU - Perrin, G.

PY - 2008/3

Y1 - 2008/3

N2 - Context.The bright southern Cepheid RS Pup is surrounded by a circumstellar nebula reflecting the light from the central star. The propagation of the light variations from the Cepheid inside the dusty nebula creates spectacular light echoes that can be observed up to large distances from the star itself. This phenomenon is currently unique in this class of stars.Aims.For this relatively distant star, the trigonometric parallax available from Hipparcos has a low accuracy. A careful observation of the light echoes has the potential to provide a very accurate, geometric distance to RS Pup.Methods.We obtained a series of CCD images of RS Pup with the NTT/EMMI instrument covering the variation period of the star ( d), allowing us to track the progression of the light wavefronts over the nebular features surrounding the star. We measured precisely the phase lag of the photometric variation in several regions of the circumstellar nebula.Results.From our phase lag measurements, we derive a geometric distance of 1992 28 pc to RS Pup. This distance is affected by a total uncertainty of 1.4%, and corresponds to a parallax of = 0.502 0.007 mas and a distance modulus of = 11.50 0.03.Conclusions.The geometric distance we derive is by far the most accurate to a Cepheid, and among the most accurate to any star. RS Pup appears both as somewhat neglected and particularly promising to investigate the mass-loss history of Cepheids. Thanks to its highly accurate distance, it is also bound to become an important luminosity fiducial for the long period part of the period-luminosity diagram.

AB - Context.The bright southern Cepheid RS Pup is surrounded by a circumstellar nebula reflecting the light from the central star. The propagation of the light variations from the Cepheid inside the dusty nebula creates spectacular light echoes that can be observed up to large distances from the star itself. This phenomenon is currently unique in this class of stars.Aims.For this relatively distant star, the trigonometric parallax available from Hipparcos has a low accuracy. A careful observation of the light echoes has the potential to provide a very accurate, geometric distance to RS Pup.Methods.We obtained a series of CCD images of RS Pup with the NTT/EMMI instrument covering the variation period of the star ( d), allowing us to track the progression of the light wavefronts over the nebular features surrounding the star. We measured precisely the phase lag of the photometric variation in several regions of the circumstellar nebula.Results.From our phase lag measurements, we derive a geometric distance of 1992 28 pc to RS Pup. This distance is affected by a total uncertainty of 1.4%, and corresponds to a parallax of = 0.502 0.007 mas and a distance modulus of = 11.50 0.03.Conclusions.The geometric distance we derive is by far the most accurate to a Cepheid, and among the most accurate to any star. RS Pup appears both as somewhat neglected and particularly promising to investigate the mass-loss history of Cepheids. Thanks to its highly accurate distance, it is also bound to become an important luminosity fiducial for the long period part of the period-luminosity diagram.

KW - ISM: dust, extinction

KW - ISM: reflection nebulae

KW - Stars: circumstellar matter

KW - Stars: distances

KW - Stars: individual: RS Pup

KW - Stars: variables: Cepheids

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=39849102039&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=39849102039&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1051/0004-6361:20078961

DO - 10.1051/0004-6361:20078961

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:39849102039

VL - 480

SP - 167

EP - 178

JO - Astronomy and Astrophysics

JF - Astronomy and Astrophysics

SN - 0004-6361

IS - 1

ER -