We report the discovery, by the Chandra X-Ray Observatory, of X-ray emission from the bipolar planetary nebula Menzel 3. In Chandra CCD imaging, Mz 3 displays hot [∼(3-6) × 106 K] gas within its twin, coaxial bubbles of optical nebulosity as well as a compact X-ray source at the position of its central star(s). The brightest diffuse X-ray emission lies along the polar axis of the optical nebula, suggesting a jetlike configuration. The observed combination of an X-ray-emitting point source and possible X-ray jet(s) is consistent with models in which accretion disks and, potentially, magnetic fields shape bipolar planetary nebulae via the generation of fast, collimated outflows.
- ISM: jets and outflows
- Planetary nebulae: individual (Menzel 3)
- Stars: AGB and post-AGB
- Stars: mass loss
- Stars: winds, outflows