From the atmosphere to the circumstellar environment in cool evolved stars

M. Wittkowski (1) and C. Paladini (2)

(1) ESO, Karl-Schwarzschild-Str. 2, 85748 Garching bei Muenchen, Germany
(2) Institut d'Astronomie et d'Astrophysique, Universite Libre de Bruxelles, ULB, CP.226, Boulevard du Triomphe, 1050 Brussels, Belgium

We discuss and illustrate contributions that optical interferometry has made on our current understanding of cool evolved stars. We include red giant branch (RGB) stars, asymptotic giant branch (AGB) stars, and red supergiants (RSGs). Studies using optical interferometry from visual to mid-infrared wavelengths have greatly increased our knowledge of their atmospheres, extended molecular shells, dust formation, and winds. These processes and the morphology of the circumstellar environment are important for the further evolution of these stars toward planetary nebulae (PNe) and core-collapse supernovae (SNe), and for the return of material to the interstellar medium.

Reference: To appear in the Book of the VLTI School 2013, held 9-21 Sep 2013 Barcelonnette (France), "What the highest angular resolution can bring to stellar astrophysics?", Ed. Millour, Chiavassa, Bigot, Chesneau, Meilland, Stee, EAS Publications Series (2015)
Status: Conference proceedings