CfA OIR Division Lunch Talks

May 6, 1999 Pratt Conference Room, 12:30 pm

Kinematics of Molecular Hydrogen in Pre-Planetary and Planetary Nebulae

Dr. Joel Kastner, MIT


We have obtained high-resolution spectra of 2.12 micron molecular hydrogen emission from a sample of bipolar pre-planetary and planetary nebulae (PNs), to address the problem of the origin of axial symmetry in these objects. In this talk I will concentrate on observations of the well-studied, pre-PN AFGL 2688 (the Egg Nebula), the very young PN AFGL 618, and the more evolved PN NGC 2346. The results offer a detailed view of the kinematics of circumstellar molecular disks and high-velocity polar outflows in these nebulae, and in so doing offer insight into their recent evolution.