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Published January 20, 2013 | Published + Submitted
Journal Article Open

High-resolution Infrared Imaging and Spectroscopy of the Z Canis Majoris System during Quiescence and Outburst


We present adaptive optics photometry and spectra in the JHKL bands along with high spectral resolution K-band spectroscopy for each component of the Z Canis Majoris system. Our high angular resolution photometry of this very young (≾1 Myr) binary, comprised of an FU Ori object and a Herbig Ae/Be star, was gathered shortly after the 2008 outburst while our high-resolution spectroscopy was gathered during a quiescent phase. Our photometry conclusively determines that the outburst was due solely to the embedded Herbig Ae/Be member, supporting results from earlier works, and that the optically visible FU Ori component decreased slightly (~30%) in luminosity during the same period, consistent with previous works on the variability of FU Ori type systems. Further, our high-resolution K-band spectra definitively demonstrate that the 2.294 μm CO absorption feature seen in composite spectra of the system is due solely to the FU Ori component, while a prominent CO emission feature at the same wavelength, long suspected to be associated with the innermost regions of a circumstellar accretion disk, can be assigned to the Herbig Ae/Be member. These findings clarify previous analyses of the origin of the CO emission in this complex system.

Additional Information

© 2013 American Astronomical Society. Received 2012 August 2; accepted 2012 December 4; published 2012 December 28. This work was performed in part under contract with the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) funded by NASA through the Sagan Fellowship Program. A portion of this work was supported by the National Science Foundation under grant Nos. AST-1203023, AST-0804417, 0334916, 0215793, 0520822, and 1245018. A portion of the research in this Letter was carried out at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under a contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and was funded by internal Research and Technology Development funds. The authors thank Pat Hartigan for his help obtaining the Keck/NIRSPEC observations. Some of the data presented herein were obtained at the W. M. Keck Observatory, which is operated as a scientific partnership among the California Institute of Technology, the University of California, and NASA. The Observatory was made possible by the generous financial support of the W. M. Keck Foundation.

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Published - 2041-8205_763_1_L9.pdf

Submitted - 1212.2637v1.pdf


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