Volume 563, March 2014
|Number of page(s)||4|
|Published online||14 March 2014|
A remarkable recurrent nova in M 31: The optical observations
Astrophysics Research Institute, Liverpool John Moores
IC2 Liverpool Science Park,
2 European Space Astronomy Centre, PO Box 78, 28691 Villanueva de la Cañada, Madrid, Spain
3 Department of Astronomy, San Diego State University, San Diego CA 92182, USA
4 Astronomical Institute, Academy of Sciences, 251 65 Ondřejov, Czech Republic
Received: 13 January 2014
Accepted: 10 February 2014
Context. In late Nov. 2013 the fifth eruption in five years of the M 31 recurrent nova M 31N 2008-12a was announced.
Aims. In this Letter we address the optical lightcurve and progenitor system of M 31N 2008-12a.
Methods. Optical imaging data of the 2013 eruption from the Liverpool Telescope, La Palma; Danish 1.54 m Telescope, La Silla; and archival Hubble Space Telescope near-IR, optical, and near-UV data are astrometrically and photometrically analysed.
Results. Photometry of the 2013 eruption, combined with three previous eruptions, enabled construction of a template lightcurve of a very fast nova ( days). The archival data allowed recovery of the progenitor system in optical and near-UV data, indicating a red-giant secondary with bright accretion disk, or alternatively a system with a sub-giant secondary but dominated by a disk.
Conclusions. The eruptions of M 31N 2008-12a, and a number of historic X-ray detections, indicate a unique system with a recurrence timescale of ~1 yr. This implies the presence of a very high-mass white dwarf and a high accretion rate. The recovered progenitor system is consistent with such an elevated rate of accretion. We encourage additional observations, especially towards the end of 2014.
Key words: galaxies: individual: M 31 / novae, cataclysmic variables / stars: individual: M 31N 2008-12a
© ESO, 2014
Current usage metrics show cumulative count of Article Views (full-text article views including HTML views, PDF and ePub downloads, according to the available data) and Abstracts Views on Vision4Press platform.
Data correspond to usage on the plateform after 2015. The current usage metrics is available 48-96 hours after online publication and is updated daily on week days.
Initial download of the metrics may take a while.