EDP Sciences
Free access
Volume 421, Number 3, July III 2004
Page(s) 1149 - 1158
Section Stellar atmospheres
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20035668

A&A 421, 1149-1158 (2004)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20035668

Warm water vapor envelope in the supergiants  $\alpha$ Ori and  $\alpha$ Her and its effects on the apparent size from the near-infrared to the mid-infrared

K. Ohnaka

Max-Planck-Institut für Radioastronomie, Auf dem Hügel 69, 53121 Bonn, Germany

(Received 12 November 2003 / Accepted 31 March 2004 )

We present a possible interpretation for the increase of the angular diameter of the supergiants $\alpha$ Ori (M 1-2 Ia-Ibe) and $\alpha$ Her (M 5 Ib-II) from the K band to the 11  $\mu$m region and the high-resolution 11  $\mu$m spectra without any salient spectral features revealed by Weiner et al. (2003b). The angular diameters as well as the high-resolution spectra of  $\alpha$ Ori and  $\alpha$ Her obtained in the 11  $\mu$m region can be reproduced by a warm water vapor envelope, whose presence in $\alpha$ Ori was revealed by Tsuji (2000a) based on the reanalysis of the near-infrared data obtained with the Stratoscope II. While prominent absorption due to H 2O can be expected from such a dense, warm water vapor envelope, the absorption lines can be filled in by emission from the extended part of the envelope. This effect leads to a significant weakening of the H 2O lines in the 11  $\mu$m region, and makes the observed spectra appear to be rather featureless and continuum-like. However, the emission due to H 2O lines from the extended envelope leads to an increase of the apparent size in this spectral region. The observed angular diameter and the high resolution spectra of  $\alpha$ Ori and $\alpha$ Her in the 11  $\mu$m region can be best interpreted by the water vapor envelope extending to 1.4-1.5  $R_{\star}$, with a temperature of ~ 2000 K and a column density of H 2O of the order of  1020 cm -2.

Key words: infrared: stars -- molecular processes -- techniques: interferometric -- stars: late-type -- stars: supergiants -- stars: individual:  $\alpha$ Ori,  $\alpha$ Her

SIMBAD Objects

© ESO 2004

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.