Hubble space telescope observations of white dwarfs in the globular cluster m41

Harvey B. Richer, Gregory G. Fahlman, Rodrigo A. Ibata, Peter B. Stetson, Roger A. Bell, Michael Bolte, Howard E. Bond, William E. Harris, James E. Hesser, Georgi Mandushev, Carlton Pryor, Don A. Vandenberg

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Abstract

With the Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2) on the Hubble Space Telescope, we have discovered in M4 (NGC 6121, C1620—264) the first extensive sequence of cooling white dwarfs seen in a globular cluster. Adopting a distance modulus of (m — M)V = 12.65 and a reddening of E(B — V) = 0.37, we show that the sequence, which extends over 9 < MU < 13, is comprised of white dwarfs of mass -0.5 M0. The total mass loss from the present turnoff to the white dwarf sequence is 0.31 M0, and the intrinsic dispersion in the mean mass appears to be <0.05 M0. Both the location of the white dwarf cooling sequence in the cluster color-magnitude diagram and the cumulative luminosity function attest to the basic correctness and completeness of the physics in theoretical models for the upper three magnitudes of the observed white dwarf cooling sequence. To test the theory in globular clusters at cooling ages beyond -3 X 108 yr will require deeper and more complete data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L17-L20
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume451
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 20 1995

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globular clusters
Hubble Space Telescope
cooling
color-magnitude diagram
completeness
physics
diagram
cameras
luminosity

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

Richer, H. B., Fahlman, G. G., Ibata, R. A., Stetson, P. B., Bell, R. A., Bolte, M., ... Vandenberg, D. A. (1995). Hubble space telescope observations of white dwarfs in the globular cluster m41. Astrophysical Journal, 451(1), L17-L20. https://doi.org/10.1086/309674
Richer, Harvey B. ; Fahlman, Gregory G. ; Ibata, Rodrigo A. ; Stetson, Peter B. ; Bell, Roger A. ; Bolte, Michael ; Bond, Howard E. ; Harris, William E. ; Hesser, James E. ; Mandushev, Georgi ; Pryor, Carlton ; Vandenberg, Don A. / Hubble space telescope observations of white dwarfs in the globular cluster m41. In: Astrophysical Journal. 1995 ; Vol. 451, No. 1. pp. L17-L20.
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Richer, HB, Fahlman, GG, Ibata, RA, Stetson, PB, Bell, RA, Bolte, M, Bond, HE, Harris, WE, Hesser, JE, Mandushev, G, Pryor, C & Vandenberg, DA 1995, 'Hubble space telescope observations of white dwarfs in the globular cluster m41', Astrophysical Journal, vol. 451, no. 1, pp. L17-L20. https://doi.org/10.1086/309674

Hubble space telescope observations of white dwarfs in the globular cluster m41. / Richer, Harvey B.; Fahlman, Gregory G.; Ibata, Rodrigo A.; Stetson, Peter B.; Bell, Roger A.; Bolte, Michael; Bond, Howard E.; Harris, William E.; Hesser, James E.; Mandushev, Georgi; Pryor, Carlton; Vandenberg, Don A.

In: Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 451, No. 1, 20.09.1995, p. L17-L20.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Fahlman, Gregory G.

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AU - Bolte, Michael

AU - Bond, Howard E.

AU - Harris, William E.

AU - Hesser, James E.

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AU - Pryor, Carlton

AU - Vandenberg, Don A.

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N2 - With the Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2) on the Hubble Space Telescope, we have discovered in M4 (NGC 6121, C1620—264) the first extensive sequence of cooling white dwarfs seen in a globular cluster. Adopting a distance modulus of (m — M)V = 12.65 and a reddening of E(B — V) = 0.37, we show that the sequence, which extends over 9 < MU < 13, is comprised of white dwarfs of mass -0.5 M0. The total mass loss from the present turnoff to the white dwarf sequence is 0.31 M0, and the intrinsic dispersion in the mean mass appears to be <0.05 M0. Both the location of the white dwarf cooling sequence in the cluster color-magnitude diagram and the cumulative luminosity function attest to the basic correctness and completeness of the physics in theoretical models for the upper three magnitudes of the observed white dwarf cooling sequence. To test the theory in globular clusters at cooling ages beyond -3 X 108 yr will require deeper and more complete data.

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Richer HB, Fahlman GG, Ibata RA, Stetson PB, Bell RA, Bolte M et al. Hubble space telescope observations of white dwarfs in the globular cluster m41. Astrophysical Journal. 1995 Sep 20;451(1):L17-L20. https://doi.org/10.1086/309674