Discovery of a New Classical Nova Shell Around a Nova-like Cataclysmic Variable

Guerrero, Martín A.; Sabin, Laurence; Tovmassian, Gagik; Santamaría, Edgar; Michel, Raul; Ramos-Larios, Gerardo; Alarie, Alexandre; Morisset, Christophe; Bermúdez Bustamante, Luis C.; González, Chantal P.; Wright, Nick J.
The Astrophysical Journal, Volume 857, Issue 2, article id. 80, 11 pp. (2018).


The morphology and optical spectrum of IPHASX J210204.7+471015, a nebula classified as a possible planetary nebula are, however, strikingly similar to those of AT Cnc, a classical nova shell around a dwarf nova. To investigate its true nature, we have obtained high-resolution narrowband [O III] and [N II] images and deep optical spectra. The nebula shows an arc of [N II]-bright knots notably enriched in nitrogen, while an [O III]-bright bow shock is progressing throughout the ISM. Diagnostic line ratios indicate that shocks are associated with the arc and bow shock. The central star of this nebula has been identified by its photometric variability. Time-resolved photometric and spectroscopic data of this source reveal a period of 4.26 hr, which is attributed to a binary system. The optical spectrum is notably similar to that of RW Sex, a cataclysmic variable star (CV) of the UX UMa nova-like (NL) type. Based on these results, we propose that IPHASX J210204.7 + 471015 is a classical nova shell observed around a CV-NL system in quiescence.