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Published August 20, 1995 | Published
Journal Article Open

WFPC2 Imaging of the Circumstellar Nebulosity of HL Tauri


Planetary camera images of HL Tauri have been obtained through V-, R-, and I-band filters using the Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2 aboard the refurbished Hubble Space Telescope. These images show that HL Tauri is entirely reflection nebulosity at optical wavelengths, with no optical star visible to a limiting magnitude of V = 25.5. The optical nebula extends northeast of the stellar position along the direction of HL Tau's optical jet and has an unusual C-shaped morphology. The bright core of the nebula is only 1" in size and is centered only 1".2 from the actual stellar position. We estimate that visual extinction toward the unseen point source is at least 22 mag and that the stellar photospheric luminosity must be at least 3 L_☉. These findings corroborate other evidence that this star is significantly younger and more embedded than typical T Tauri stars.

Additional Information

© 1995 American Astronomical Society. Provided by the NASA Astrophysics Data System. Received 1994 October 24; accepted 1995 March 7. Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. We wish to thank John Carr (Ohio State University) for providing us with a measurement of HL Tau's 2.3 µm continuum veiling. We also thank the referee for useful comments. This work was conducted at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, and at the Space Telescope Institute operated by AURA, under contracts with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. K. R. S. acknowledges support from the NASA Origins of Solar Systems Research Program.

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Published - 1995ApJ___449__888S.pdf


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