Gemini observations of Wolf-Rayet stars in the Local Group starburst galaxy IC 10

P.A. Crowther, L. Drissen, J.B. Abbott, P. Royer, Stephen Smartt

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53 Citations (Scopus)


We present Gemini-N GMOS and CFHT MOS spectroscopy of Wolf-Rayet candidates in the Local Group dwarf galaxy IC 10 that were previously identified by Massey et al. and Royer et al. From the present spectroscopic survey, the WC/WN ratio for IC 10 remains unusually high, given its low metallicity, although none of the WC9 stars suspected from narrow-band imaging are confirmed. Our spectroscopy confirms 9 newly discovered Wolf-Rayet candidates from Royer et al., whilst spectral types of 14 Wolf-Rayet stars previously observed by Massey & Armandroff are refined here. In total, there are 26 spectroscopically confirmed Wolf-Rayet stars in IC 10. All but one of the fourteen WC stars are WC4-6 stars, the exception being # 10 from Massey et al., a broad-lined, apparently single WC7 star. There are a total of eleven WN stars, which are predominantly early WN3-4 stars, but include a rare WN10 star, # 8 from Royer et al. # 5 from Massey et al. is newly identified as a transition WN/C star. Consequently, the WC/WN ratio for IC10 is 14/11similar to1.3, unusually high for a metal-poor galaxy. Re-evaluating recent photometric data of Massey & Holmes, we suggest that the true WC/WN ratio may not be as low as similar to0.3. Finally, we present ground-based finding charts for all confirmed WR stars, plus HST/WFPC2 charts for twelve cases.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)483-493
Number of pages11
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Space and Planetary Science


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