EDP Sciences
Free access
Volume 437, Number 3, July III 2005
Page(s) 1029 - 1046
Section Stellar atmospheres
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20052810

A&A 437, 1029-1046 (2005)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20052810

An XMM-Newton observation of the multiple system HD 167971 (O5-8V + O5-8V + (O8I)) and the young open cluster NGC 6604

M. De Becker1, G. Rauw1, R. Blomme2, J. M. Pittard3, I. R. Stevens4 and M. C. Runacres2

1  Institut d'Astrophysique, Université de Liège, Allée du 6 Août, Bât. B5c, 4000 Liège (Sart Tilman), Belgium
    e-mail: debecker@astro.ulg.ac.be
2  Royal Observatory of Belgium, Avenue Circulaire 3, 1180 Brussels, Belgium
3  Department of Physics & Astronomy, University of Leeds, Leeds LS2 9JT, UK
4  School of Physics & Astronomy, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TT, UK

(Received 3 February 2005 / Accepted 19 March 2005)

We discuss the results of two XMM-Newton observations of the open cluster NGC 6604 obtained in April and September 2002. We concentrate mainly on the multiple system HD 167971 (O5-8V + O5-8V + (O8I)). The soft part of the EPIC spectrum of this system is thermal with typical temperatures of about 2 $\times$ 106 to 9 $\times$ 106 K. The nature (thermal vs. non-thermal) of the hard part of the spectrum is not unambiguously revealed by our data. If the emission is thermal, the high temperature of the plasma (~2.3 $\times$ 107 to 4.6 $\times$ 107 K) would be typical of what should be expected from a wind-wind interaction zone within a long period binary system. This emission could arise from an interaction between the combined winds of the O5-8V + O5-8V close binary system and that of the more distant O8I companion. Assuming instead that the hard part of the spectrum is non-thermal, the photon index would be rather steep (~3). Moreover, a marginal variability between our two XMM-Newton pointings could be attributed to an eclipse of the O5-8V + O5-8V system. The overall X-ray luminosity points to a significant X-ray luminosity excess of about a factor 4 possibly due to colliding winds. Considering HD 167971 along with several recent X-ray and radio observations, we propose that the simultaneous observation of non-thermal radiation in the X-ray (below 10.0 keV) and radio domains appears rather unlikely. Our investigation of our XMM-Newton data of NGC 6604 reveals a rather sparse distribution of X-ray emitters. Including the two bright non-thermal radio emitters HD 168112 and HD 167971, we present a list of 31 X-ray sources along with the results of the cross-correlation with optical and infrared catalogues. A more complete spectral analysis is presented for the brightest X-ray sources. Some of the members of NGC 6604 present some characteristics suggesting they may be pre-main sequence star candidates.

Key words: radiation mechanisms: non-thermal -- stars: early-type -- stars: individual: HD 167971 -- stars: winds, outflows -- X-rays: stars

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