Computer Graphics
TU Braunschweig

A wind-shell interaction model for multipolar planetary nebulae

A wind-shell interaction model for multipolar planetary nebulae

We explore the formation of multipolar structures in planetary and pre-planetary nebulae from the interaction of a fast post-AGB wind with a highly inhomogeneous and filamentary shell structure assumed to form during the final phase of the high density wind. The simulations were performed with a new hydrodynamics code integrated in the interactive framework of the astrophysical modeling package SHAPE. In contrast to conventional astrophysical hydrodynamics software, the new code does not require any programming intervention by the user for setting up or controlling the code. Visualization and analysis of the simulation data has been done in SHAPE without external software. The key conclusion from the simulations is that secondary lobes in planetary nebulae, such as Hubble 5 and K3-17, can be formed through the interaction of a fast low-density wind with a complex high density environment, such as a filamentary circumstellar shell. The more complicated alternative explanation of intermittent collimated outflows that change direction, in many cases may therefore not be necessary. We consider that the wind-shell interaction scenario is more likely since the bow-shock shape expected from a strongly cooling bow-shock from jets is different from that of the observed bubbles. Furthermore, the timescales of the wind-wind interaction suggest that the progenitor star was rather massive.

Author(s):Wolfgang Steffen, Nicholas Koning, A Esquivel, G. Garcia-Segura, Ma. T. Garcia-Diaz, J.A. Lopez, Marcus Magnor
Published:September 2013
Journal:Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society Vol. 436
Project(s): Astrophysical Modeling and Visualization 

  title = {A wind-shell interaction model for multipolar planetary nebulae},
  author = {Steffen, Wolfgang and Koning, Nicholas and Esquivel, A and Garcia-Segura, G. and Garcia-Diaz, Ma. T. and Lopez, J.A. and Magnor, Marcus},
  journal = {Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society},
  volume = {436},
  number = {1},
  pages = {470--478},
  month = {Sep},
  year = {2013}


  • Wolfgang Steffen

    Fmr. Visiting Researcher
  • Nicholas Koning

  • A Esquivel

  • G. Garcia-Segura

  • Ma. T. Garcia-Diaz

  • J.A. Lopez

  • Marcus Magnor

    Head of Institute