Abundances in bulge stars from high-resolution, near-IR spectra
I. The CNO elements observed during the science verification of CRIRES at VLTN. Ryde1, 2, B. Edvardsson2, B. Gustafsson2, K. Eriksson2, H. U. Käufl3, R. Siebenmorgen3, and A. Smette4
1 Lund Observatory, Box 43, 22100 Lund, Sweden
2 Department of Astronomy and Space Physics, Uppsala University, Box 515, 75120 Uppsala, Sweden
3 ESO, Karl-Schwarzschild-Str. 2, 85748 Garching, Germany
4 ESO, Alonso de Cordova 3107, Vitacura, Casilla 19001, Santiago 19, Chile
Received 1 October 2008 / Accepted 11 January 2009
Context. The formation and evolution of the Milky Way bulge is not yet well understood and its classification is ambiguous. Constraints can, however, be obtained by studying the abundances of key elements in bulge stars.
Aims. The aim of this study is to determine the chemical evolution of C, N, O, and a few other elements in stars in the Galactic bulge, and to discuss the sensitivities of the derived abundances from molecular lines.
Methods. High-resolution, near-infrared spectra in the H band were recorded using the CRIRES spectrometer on the Very Large Telescope. Due to the high and variable visual extinction in the line-of-sight towards the bulge, an analysis in the near-IR is preferred. The C, N, and O abundances can all be determined simultaneously from the numerous molecular lines in the wavelength range observed.
Results. The three giant stars in Baade's window presented here are the first bulge stars observed with CRIRES during its science verification observations. We have especially determined the C, N, and O abundances, with uncertainties of less than 0.20 dex, from CO, CN, and OH lines. Since the systematic uncertainties in the derived C, N, and O abundances due to uncertainties in the stellar fundamental parameters, notably , are significant, a detailed discussion of the sensitivities of the derived abundances is included. We find good agreement between near-IR and optically determined O, Ti, Fe, and Si abundances. Two of our stars show a solar [C+N/Fe], suggesting that these giants have experienced the first dredge-up and that the oxygen abundance should reflect the original abundance of the giants. The two giants fit into the picture, in which there is no significant difference between the oxygen abundance in bulge and thick-disk stars. Our determination of the sulphur abundances is the first for bulge stars. The high [S/Fe] values for all the stars indicate a high star-formation rate in an early phase of the bulge evolution.
Key words: stars: abundances -- Galaxy: bulge -- infrared: stars
© ESO 2009