1 Instituut voor Sterrenkunde, K.U. Leuven, Celestijnenlaan 200D, 3001 Leuven, Belgium
2 Department of Physics and Astronomy, Valparaiso University, Valparaiso, IN 46383, USA
Received: 17 January 2012
Accepted: 15 March 2012
Aims. We focus here on one particular and poorly studied object, IRAS 11472–0800. It is a highly evolved post-asymptotic giant branch (post-AGB) star of spectral type F, with a large infrared excess produced by thermal emission of circumstellar dust.
Methods. We deployed a multi-wavelength study that includes the analyses of optical and IR spectra as well as a variability study based on photometric and spectroscopic time-series.
Results. The spectral energy distribution (SED) properties as well as the highly processed silicate N-band emission show that the dust in IRAS 11472–0800 is likely trapped in a stable disc. The energetics of the SED and the colour variability show that our viewing angle is close to edge-on and that the optical flux is dominated by scattered light. With photospheric abundances of [Fe/H] = −2.7 and [Sc/H] = −4.2, we discovered that IRAS 11472–0800 is one of the most chemically-depleted objects known to date. Moreover, IRAS 11472–0800 is a pulsating star with a period of 31.16 days and a peak-to-peak amplitude of 0.6 mag in V. The radial velocity variability is strongly influenced by the pulsations, but the significant cycle-to-cycle variability is systematic on a longer time scale, which we interpret as evidence for binary motion.
Conclusions. We conclude that IRAS 11472–0800 is a pulsating binary star surrounded by a circumbinary disc. The line-of-sight towards the object lies close to the orbital plane, therefore the optical light is dominated by scattered light. IRAS 11472–0800 is one of the most chemically-depleted objects known so far and links the dusty RV Tauri stars to the non-pulsating class of strongly depleted objects.
Key words: stars: AGB and post-AGB / binaries: general / binaries: spectroscopic / stars: chemically peculiar / stars: evolution / stars: abundances
Based on observations collected at the European Southern Observatory, Chile. Programme ID: 65.L-0615(A), on observations made with the Mercator Telescope, operated on the island of La Palma by the Flemish Community, at the Spanish Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos and on observations obtained with the HERMES spectrograph, which is supported by the Fund for Scientific Research of Flanders (FWO), Belgium, the Research Council of K.U. Leuven, Belgium, the Fonds National Recherches Scientific (FNRS), Belgium, the Royal Observatory of Belgium, the Observatoire de Genève, Switzerland and the Thüringer Landessternwarte Tautenburg, Germany.
Tables 3 and 6 are only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (188.8.131.52) or via http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/542/A53
© ESO, 2012