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The progenitor and remnant of the helium nova V445 Puppis

  • Goranskij, V. P.
  • Shugarov, S. Yu.
  • Zharova, A. V.
  • Kroll, P.
  • Barsukova, E. A.
Publication Date
Nov 28, 2010
Submission Date
Nov 28, 2010
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V445 Pup was a peculiar nova with no hydrogen spectral lines during the outburst. The spectrum contained strong emission lines of carbon, oxygen, calcium, sodium, and iron. We have performed digital processing of photographic images of the V445 Pup progenitor using astronomical plate archives. The brightness of the progenitor in the B band was 14.3 mag. It was a periodic variable star, its most probable period being 0.650654+/-0.000011 day. The light curve shape suggests that the progenitor was a common-envelope binary with a spot on the surface and variable surface brightness. The spectral energy distribution of the progenitor between 0.44 and 2.2 micrometers was similar to that of an A0V type star. After the explosion in 2001, the dust was formed in the ejecta, and the star became a strong infrared source. This resulted in the star's fading below 20 mag in the V band. Our CCD BVR observations acquired between 2003 and 2009 suggest that the dust absorption minimum finished in 2004, and the remnant reappeared at the level of 18.5 mag V. The dust dispersed but a star-like object was absent in frames taken in the K band with the VLT adaptive optics. Only expanding ejecta of the explosion were seen in these frames till March 2007. No reddened A0V type star reappeared in the spectral energy distribution. The explosion of V445 Pup in 2000 was a helium flash on the surface of a CO-type white dwarf. Taking into account the results of modern dynamic calculations, we discuss the possibility of a white-dwarf core detonation triggered by the helium flash and the observational evidence for it. Additionally, the common envelope of the system was lost in the explosion. Destruction in the system and mass loss from its components exclude the future SN Ia scenario for V445 Pup.

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