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Modelling the optical spectrum of Romano’s star


  • Based in part on data collected at the Subaru telescope and obtained from the SMOKA, which is operated by the Astronomy Data Center, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, while other data were taken from the archive of the Special Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) of the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS).



We consider the luminous blue variable (LBV) star V532 in M33, also known as Romano’s star, in two different spectral states: in the optical minimum of 2007/2008 and during a local brightening in 2005. Optical spectra of low and moderate resolution are modelled using the non-local thermodynamic equilibrium model atmosphere code cmfgen. All the observed properties of the object in the minimum are well described by a late WN (nitrogen-sequence Wolf-Rayet) star model with a relatively high hydrogen abundance (H/He = 1.9), while the spectrum during the outburst corresponds to the spectral class WN11 and is similar to the spectrum of P Cyg. The atmosphere is enriched in nitrogen by about a factor of 6 in both states. Most of the heavy-element abundances are consistent with the chemical composition of M33. Bolometric luminosity is shown to vary between the two states by a factor of ∼1.5. This makes V532 another example of an LBV that shows variations in its bolometric luminosity during an outburst.

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