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A large radio nebula around P Cygni

Skinner, CJ; Becker, RH; White, RL; Exter, KM; Barlow, MJ; Davis, RJ; (1998) A large radio nebula around P Cygni. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society , 296 (3) pp. 669-688. 10.1046/j.1365-8711.1998.01388.x. Green open access

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We present a large set of radio observations of the luminous blue variable P Cygni. These include two 6-cm images obtained with MERLIN which spatially resolve the 6-cm photosphere, monitoring observations obtained at Jodrell Bank every few days over a period of two months, and VLA observations obtained every month for seven years. This combination of data shows that the circumstellar environment of P Cyg is highly inhomogeneous, that there is a radio nebula extending to almost an arcminute from the star at 2 and 6 cm, and that the radio emission is variable on a time-scale no longer than one month, and probably as short as a few days. This short-time-scale variability is difficult to explain. We present a model for the radio emission with which we demonstrate that the star has probably been losing mass at a significant rate for at least a few thousand years, and that it has undergone at least two major outbursts of increased mass loss during the past two millenia.

Type: Article
Title: A large radio nebula around P Cygni
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1046/j.1365-8711.1998.01388.x
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-8711.1998.01388.x
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the version of record. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: circumstellar matter, stars: individual: P Cyg, stars: mass-loss, stars: variables: other, radio continuum: stars
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Dept of Physics and Astronomy
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10096087
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