Volume 393, Number 2, October II 2002
|Page(s)||611 - 615|
|Section||Interstellar and circumstellar matter|
|Published online||23 September 2002|
On the use of CO/CO as a test of common-envelope evolution
Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Sheffield, Sheffield, S3 7RH, UK e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
2 Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton, SO17 1BJ, UK e-mail: email@example.com
3 N. Copernicus Astronomical Center, Polish Academy of Sciences, ul. Bartycka 18, 00-716 Warsaw, Poland e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Corresponding author: V. S. Dhillon, email@example.com
Accepted: 16 July 2002
We present K-band echelle spectra of the cataclysmic variable SS Cyg and the pre-cataclysmic variable V471 Tau in order to measure the strengths of the 12CO and 13CO bands at 2.3525 and 2.3448 μm, respectively, and so perform the observational test of the common-envelope model of close binary star evolution proposed by Sarna et al. ([CITE]). Although we find evidence of an absorption feature coincident with the expected wavelength of 13CO in both objects, we attribute it instead to a cluster of neutral atomic absorption features (primarily due to Ti I) possibly arising from star-spots on the surfaces of the rapidly rotating secondary stars in these systems, thereby rendering the test inconclusive. We present a modified observational test of common-envelope evolution, based on the observation of the 13CO bands at 2.3739 and 2.4037 μm, which is insensitive to spectral contamination by star-spots.
Key words: binaries: spectroscopic / stars: individual: SS Cyg / stars: individual: V471 Tau / novae, cataclysmic variables / infrared: stars / nuclear reactions, nucleosynthesis, abundances
© ESO, 2002
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