EDP Sciences
Free access
Volume 388, Number 1, June II 2002
Page(s) L20 - L23
Section Letters
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20020583

A&A 388, L20-L23 (2002)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20020583


The dominant X-ray wind in massive star binaries

J. M. Pittard1 and I. R. Stevens2

1  Department of Physics & Astronomy, The University of Leeds, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds, LS2 9JT, UK
2  Department of Physics & Astronomy, The University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT, UK

(Received 8 March 2002 / Accepted 12 April 2002 )

We investigate which shocked wind is responsible for the majority of the X-ray emission in colliding wind binaries, an issue where there is some confusion in the literature, and which we show is more complicated than has been assumed. We find that where both winds rapidly cool (typically close binaries), the ratio of the wind speeds is often more important than the momentum ratio, because it controls the energy flux ratio, and the faster wind is generally the dominant emitter. When both winds are largely adiabatic (typically long-period binaries), the slower and denser wind will cool faster and the stronger wind generally dominates the X-ray luminosity.

Key words: stars: binaries: general -- stars: early-type -- stars: Wolf-Rayet -- X-rays: stars

Offprint request: J. M. Pittard, jmp@ast.leeds.ac.uk

SIMBAD Objects

© ESO 2002

What is OpenURL?

The OpenURL standard is a protocol for transmission of metadata describing the resource that you wish to access.

An OpenURL link contains article metadata and directs it to the OpenURL server of your choice. The OpenURL server can provide access to the resource and also offer complementary services (specific search engine, export of references...). The OpenURL link can be generated by different means.

  • If your librarian has set up your subscription with an OpenURL resolver, OpenURL links appear automatically on the abstract pages.
  • You can define your own OpenURL resolver with your EDPS Account.
    In this case your choice will be given priority over that of your library.
  • You can use an add-on for your browser (Firefox or I.E.) to display OpenURL links on a page (see http://www.openly.com/openurlref/). You should disable this module if you wish to use the OpenURL server that you or your library have defined.