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Astron. Astrophys. 318, 256-268 (1997)

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Planetary nebulae morphologies, central star masses and nebular properties *

S.K. Górny 1, 2, G. Stasiska 2 and R.Tylenda 1

1 Copernicus Astronomical Center, Laboratory of Astrophysics, ul. Rabiaska 8, PL-87100 Toru, Poland
(skg@ncac.torun.pl, tylenda@ncac.torun.pl)
2 DAEC, Observatoire de Meudon, F-92195 Meudon Principal Cedex, France (grazyna@obspm.fr)

Received 2 April 1996 / Accepted 27 June 1996


We have constituted a sample of about 80 PN with defined morphologies and well observed basic parameters (fluxes, angular radii, expansion velocities and magnitudes of the central stars). For these PN, we have derived the central star masses by comparing the observed set of parameters with those predicted by a simple evolutionary model of a PN, expanding at the same velocity as the observed one. We have then examined the relations between the PN morphological types and other properties, linked to the central star mass.

Bipolar PN are shown to have a wider distribution of central star masses than the rest of PN, and shifted towards higher values. They lie closer to the Galactic plane and tend to have larger N/O ratios.

Point symmetric PN, which have not been much studied so far, are found to constitute an outstanding class. They show an almost perfect [FORMULA] - [FORMULA] correlation. They correspond to a rather short evolutionary stage of PN. They lie, on average, further from the Galactic plane than bipolar PN and tend to have lower N/O.

Globally, PN with higher central star masses are found closer to the Galactic plane, and the observed relation between N/O and [FORMULA] is roughly consistent with the predictions from evolutionary models for AGB stars.

Key words: planetary nebulae: general – stars: AGB and post-AGB – stars: fundamental parameters

* Table 1 is also available in electronic form and Table 3 is only available in electronic form at the CDS via anonymous ftp

Send offprint requests to: S.K. Górny

© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1997

Online publication: July 8, 1998