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New optical nova in M 31

ATel #1790; M. Henze, W. Pietsch, V. Burwitz (Max-Planck-Institut fuer extraterrestrische Physik, MPE), D. Hatzidimitriou, P. Reig, N. Primak, G. Papamastorakis (University of Crete)
on 19 Oct 2008; 13:15 UT
Credential Certification: Wolfgang Pietsch (wnp@mpe.mpg.de)

Subjects: Optical, Nova

Referred to by ATel #: 1818, 1871

We report the discovery of a new nova in M 31 on four consecutive dithered stacked R filter CCD images, obtained on 2008 Oct 18.91, with the 1.3m Ritchey Chretien f/7.5 telescope at Skinakas Observatory, Crete, Greece, using an Andor DZ436-BV CCD Camera (with a Marconi 2k x 2k chip with 13.5µm sq. pixels). The R magnitude of the object was 18.3. The object is already visible on several earlier R images obtained with the same telescope and camera: Oct 06.11, 19.1; 16.10, 18.7; 18.08, 18.6. This photometric history could point towards a slowly evolving nova with a possible still rising luminosity. The object is also clearly visible on H-alpha images obtained at Skinakas Observatory, with the same telescope and camera as above and using a broad (75\AA) H-alpha filter, on 2008 Oct 18.97. We determined a magnitude of 18.2 from a photometric solution using R magnitudes (see also ATel #1602) of the Local Group Survey M 31 catalogue (Massey et al. 2006, AJ, 131, 2478). The fact that the object shows up as a bright H-alpha source allows us to classify it as a nova (see also ATel #1141). The position obtained for the nova is RA = 00h43m02.42s, Dec = 41d14'09.9" (J2000, accuracy of 0.3"), which is 3'24" east and 2'00" south of the core of M 31.

All magnitudes given are obtained from a photometric solution using R magnitudes of the Local Group Survey M 31 catalogue (see above). No object is visible (limiting R magnitude of ~20.0) at the position of the nova on Skinakas images of 2008 Sep 24.05 and before. There is no entry in VizieR/CDS for this object and no minor planet could be found on this position using the MPC/IAU Minor Planet Checker (see http://scully.harvard.edu/~cgi/CheckMP ).