3. THE INPUT PARAMETERS
3.1 Input parameters depending on the shock
Shock velocity Vs: although the FWHM of the line profiles indicate the velocity of the emitting gas rather than that of the shock, as a first trial FWHM roughly suggest the Vs range.
Preshock density n0 : for a first trial, it is indicated from the characteristic line ratios (e.g. [SII]6548/[SII]6584), considering, however, that n0 is by a factor 5-100 less than the density of the downstream gas emitting the lines, depending on Vs.
Preshock magnetic field B0: it is generally assumed from the observations related to polarization. Its value is then refined phenomenologically. B0 is a crucial parameter because a high component transversal to the shock direction can substantially reduce compression.
3.2 Input parameters depending on photoionization
Different shapes of the primary radiation can be used:
a) Power-law radiation: it is characterized by the spectral indices αUV and αX, in the UV and in the X-ray domains, respectively., and by Fν that is the flux intensity at 1 Rydberg, in units of photons cm-2 s-1 eV-1 and is constrained mainly by the [OIII] 5007/[OII] 3727 line ratios, while the spectral index by the UV line ratios.
b) Black-body radiation: it is characterized by the stellar temperature TS, intended as a color temperature, and the ionization parameter U. Both values are strongly constrained by the HeII/HeI line ratios.
c) Black-body + power-law
The composite spectrum consisting of black-body in the UV and power-law in the X-ray domain is also considered by the code.
3.3 Input parameters depending on the dust
Dust-to-gas ratio d/g: it is directly related to the intensity of the infrared peak of the reprocessed radiation by dust., and depends on the ratio of the reprocessed radiation to bremsstrahlung in the IR, throughout the SED of the continuum. Notice that a high d/g, speeding up the cooling rate downstream, may change a non-radiative shock into a radiative one.
Grain radius agr: the smaller the grains, the higher the temperature reached by radiation heating, and the faster they are eroded by sputtering in grain-gas collisions.
3.4 Relative abundance of the elements
The following elements are considered : H, He, C, N, O, Ne, Mg, Si, S, Cl, A,and Fe. They are constrained by the ratios of single element lines. The high abundance of a strong coolant element (e.g. oxygen), affecting the cooling rate, may substantially change both line and continuum spectra.
3.5 Geometrical thickness of the nebula
The parameter D (together with the flux intensity and the density) determines whether the model is matter-bound or radiation-bound. In case str=1, a low D reduces the region of relatively low temperature in the internal region of the cloud, and leads to less intense, even negligible, neutral lines (Fig. 1).