Search for indications of stellar mass ejections using FUV spectra
Institut für Physik, IGAM, Karl-Franzens Universität Graz, Universitätsplatz 5, 8010 Graz, Austria
2 Institut d’Estudis Espacials de Catalunya/CSIC, Campus UAB, Facultat de Ciénces, Torre C-5 – parell – 2 a planta, 08193 Bellaterra, Spain
3 Space Research Institute, Austrian Academy of Sciences, 6 Schmiedlstrasse, Austria
Received: 23 October 2010
Accepted: 1 September 2011
Aims. We search for highly energetic activity phenomena in a small sample of late-type main-sequence stars in the far ultraviolet (FUV) using data from the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE).
Methods. Because FUSE allows a simultaneous photometric and spectroscopic analysis, we are able to analyze variations in the light curves (flares) and possible, activity-related signatures (line asymmetries, enhancements, and shifts) in the spectra. Furthermore, the computation of the well-known density-sensitive line ratio C iii(λ1176 Å)/C iii(λ977 Å) is also possible, and allows the investigation of its dependence on stellar activity.
Results. Three late-type main-sequence stars found in the FUSE archive (HD 36705, HD 197481, and Gl 388) show flares in their light curves. We find no obvious Doppler shifts in the brightest lines of these stars, but the O vi(λ1032 Å) transition region line of AD Leo shows a blue wing enhancement one spectrum after a flare event. This emission feature is shifted by ~–84 km s-1 from the line core. We can exclude that the spectral feature was caused by a gas cloud co-rotating with the star and favor an interpretation of a mass ejection. In addition we find an increase of the C iii(λ1176 Å)/C iii(λ977 Å) line ratio during all detected flares. We compare this finding to the Sun using solar full-disk spectra from the Thermosphere Ionosphere Mesosphere Energetics and Dynamics (TIMED) and SOlar Radiation and Climate Experiment (SORCE) missions, and find that powerful flare events also show an increased C iii(λ1176 Å)/C iii(λ977 Å) line ratio but this result is of low statistical significance. Owing to a lack of perfectly temporally coinciding TIMED/SORCE spectra and a low temporal resolution (~15 spectra per day) it is not possible to distinguish clearly if this increase is caused by the flares or by the related mass ejections.
Key words: stars: activity / stars: flare / stars: late-type / ultraviolet: stars / Sun: activity / Sun: transition region
© ESO, 2011