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A detailed optical study of Kepler's supernova remnant
Blair, William P.; Long, Knox S.; Vancura, Olaf
AA(Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD), AB(Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD), AC(Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD)
Astrophysical Journal, Part 1 (ISSN 0004-637X), vol. 366, Jan. 10, 1991, p. 484-494. Research supported by the Johns Hopkins University. (ApJ Homepage)
Publication Date:
NASA/STI Keywords:
Nebulae, Spectrophotometry, Stellar Spectra, Supernova Remnants, Charge Coupled Devices, Emission Spectra, Kepler Laws, Line Spectra
Astronomy Keywords:
nebulae: individual (Kepler's supernova), nebulae: internal motions, nebulae: supernova remnants, radiation mechanisms
Bibliographic Code:


We present optical CCD/interference filter imagery and long-slit CCD spectrophotometry of the remnant of Kepler's supernova (SN 1604 A.D.) obtained with the 2.5 m DuPont telescope at the Las Campanas Observatory. Subtraction of a continuum image from the emission line image shows the full extent of the optical emission of the supernova remnant, which has both diffuse and knotty structures. Spectroscopy in the 4700-7000 Å range confirms the presence of nonradiative, Balmer-dominated, shock emission in Kepler's remnant and shows this emission to be much more extensive than previously realized, extending to knotty structures as well as diffuse emission. This is the first report of nonradiative shock emission from filaments with a knotty morphology. Emission knots are also identified which appear to be at intermediate stages of becoming radiative. The shock velocity in the Balmer-dominated shocks is 1530-2000 km s-1. If this is the expansion velocity of the entire supernova remnant, the distance to Kepler's SNR is 2.9±0.4 kpc.

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