Structural Analysis of NGC 2371-2 Using Deep Images in [O-III] and Tri-color
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The odd structure of NGC 2371/2, a planetary nebula (PN) has been studied. This nebula has ejected gas during the final stages of stellar evolution. These gases do not appear to be symmetric as would be expected. Using a narrow-band [O-III] filter centered at 5007 Angstroms ( ̊A ) with the Steward Observatory 61 inch Kuiper telescope and Mont4K camera, deep field images were obtained to study the faint structure of the PN which have never been studied before. Multiple images were taken and combined to create a final processed image. The total exposure time with an [O III] filter was 9 hours. Using the same instrumentation, 1 hour of exposures were taken with three filters, R, V, and B. These images have been processed and stacked for a final tricolor image. The final [O III] image was contoured under six ranging intensity levels. Each contour ranges in pixel counts by 5,000. This gives detail of the nebula for each intensity level. The final contour plot shows all the contour plots stacked on top of each other. The contours were done in Iraf. The structure of the nebula has been compared to prior studies. These studies show only part of the nebula and miss some of the fainter details that are seen in this paper. In early work the outer gas shell appears to be detached from the nebula; however, through this research the outer shell has faint gas connecting it with the rest of the nebula. Also found in this study were two jets moving NE and SW from the central star.
Carthage College Senior Thesis in Physics 2009 Erin Martin