This paper reports on the use of point spread function fitting to model, and ultimately remove a stellar object from spectrophotometric images of an emission nebula called the Red Rectangle. In an effort to produce a semblance of the extended emission, the central star of the nebulosity is removed from images of the Red Rectangle nebula at three specific wavelengths. The nebular spectrum of the Red Rectangle reveals optical emission at particular wavelengths in the red region, and virtually no emission by around 500 nm. If a point spread function can be accurately fit to an image where no emission is visible, a model of the central star can be found. This function can then be subtracted from images exhibiting nebulosity. Since the source of many of the features in the Red Rectangle’s spectrum remain unidentified, a representation of the extended emission may prove useful to astronomers in order to explain its origin.
Canning, Meghan, "Extracting the mystery from the red rectangle" (1999). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
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