Movie Showing Motion in the R Aqr Jet From October 1991 to October 1993 Using HST FOC Data

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Session 2 -- Software
Display presentation, Monday, June 12, 1995, 9:20am - 6:30pm

[2.10] Movie Showing Motion in the R Aqr Jet From October 1991 to October 1993 Using HST FOC Data

J.M. Hollis, R.G. Lyon, J.E. Dorband, W.A. Feibelman (NASA/GSFC)

This video graphically shows sub-arcsecond changes in the morphology of the inner 5 arcseconds of the R Aqr jet over a two-year period in the light of [O II] at 2470 /AA. These unsaturated data were taken with the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Faint Object Camera (FOC) when the primary mirror flaw was still affecting observations. Images of the R Aqr stellar jet were successfully restored to the original design resolution by completely characterizing the telescope-camera system with the aid of phase-retrieval techniques. Thus, a noise-free point spread function was employed in the final restorations which utilized the maximum entropy method (MEM). The video shows that the northeast (NE)-southwest (SW) oriented jet-counterjet rotates in projection on the sky in a counter clockwise manner. Moreover, this motion appears to compress the leading side of the jet. Further, the data clearly show that the jet is expanding along the NE-SW axis with a prominent helical-like structure evident in the stronger NE side of the jet. We interpret the rotational motion as likely due to precession of the accretion disk which probably is responsible for the two-sided jet structure, and the helical structure as likely due to the orbital motion of the hot companion and accretion disk around the Mira primary. The restoration computations and the algorithms employed were effected on a massively parallel computer system, and demonstrate that mining of flawed HST data can be scientifically worthwhile.

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