EDP Sciences
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Volume 417, Number 3, April III 2004
Page(s) 987 - 992
Section Interstellar and circumstellar matter
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20034525

A&A 417, 987-992 (2004)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20034525

Distribution of magnetically confined circumstellar matter in oblique rotators

O. Preuss1, M. Schüssler1, V. Holzwarth2 and S. K. Solanki1

1  Max-Planck-Institut für Aeronomie, 37191 Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany
2  School of Physics and Astronomy, University of St. Andrews, St. Andrews Fife KY16 9SS, Scotland, UK

(Received 16 October 2003 / Accepted 27 December 2003 )

We consider the mechanical equilibrium and stability of matter trapped in the magnetosphere of a rapidly rotating star. Assuming a dipolar magnetic field and arbitrary inclination of the magnetic axis with respect to the axis of rotation we find stable equilibrium positions a) in a (warped) disk roughly aligned with the magnetic equatorial plane and b) at two locations above and below the disk, whose distance from the star increases with decreasing inclination angle between dipole and rotation axis. The distribution of matter is not strongly affected by allowing for a spatial offset of the magnetic dipole. These results provide a possible explanation for some observations of corotating localized mass concentrations in hot magnetic stars.

Key words: stars: circumstellar matter -- stars: emission lines, Be -- stars: magnetic fields -- stars: rotation -- stars: winds, outflows -- stars: mass-loss

Offprint request: M. Schüssler, schuessler@linmpi.mpg.de

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