Fr.: étoile WN3/O3
A new type of → Wolf-Rayet stars found in the → Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC). These stars have both strong → emission lines, as well as → He II lines and → Balmer lines in absorption and spectroscopically resemble a → WN3 and → O3V binary pair. However, they are visually too faint to be WN3+O3 V → binary systems. So far nine WN3/O3 types have been detected, making up ~ 6% of the population of LMC WRs. Their temperatures are estimated to be around 100,000 K, a bit hotter than the majority of → WN Wolf-Rayet stars (by around 10,000 K) although a few hotter WNs are known. The abundances are what you would expect for → CNO equilibrium. However, most anomalous are their → mass-loss rates which are more like that of an → O star than a WN star. While their evolutionary status is uncertain, their low mass-loss rates and → wind velocities suggest that they are not products of homogeneous evolution. It is possible instead that these stars represent an intermediate stage between O stars and WNs. Since WN3/O3 stars are unknown in the Milky Way, their formation would depend upon → metallicity (Neugent et al., 2017, arxiv:1704.05497).