XMM-Newton X-ray spectroscopy of classical T Tauri stars
Hamburger Sternwarte, Universität Hamburg, Gojenbergsweg 112, 21029 Hamburg, Germany e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Accepted: 13 December 2005
We present results from a comparative study of XMM-Newton observations of four classical T Tauri stars (CTTS), namely BP Tau, CR Cha, SU Aur and TW Hya. In these objects coronal, i.e. magnetic, activity and as recently shown, magnetically funneled accretion are the processes likely to be responsible for the generation of X-ray emission. Variable X-ray emission with luminosities in the order of 1030 erg/s is observed for all targets. We investigate light curves as well as medium and high-resolution X-ray spectra to determine the plasma properties of the sample CTTS and to study the origin of their X-ray emission and its variability. The emission measure distributions and observed temperatures differ significantly and the targets are dominated either by plasma at high densities as produced by accretion shocks or by predominantly hotter plasma of coronal origin. Likewise the variability of the X-ray luminosity is found to be generated by both mechanisms. Cool plasma at high densities is found in all stars with detected triplet emission, prevented only for SU Aur due to strong absorption. A general trend is present in the abundance pattern, with neon being at solar value or enhanced while oxygen, iron and most other metals are depleted, pointing to the presence of the inverse FIP effect in active coronae and possibly grain formation in evolved disks. We find that both accretion shocks and coronal activity contribute to the observed X-ray emission of the targets. While coronal activity is the dominant source of X-ray activity in the majority of the CTTS, the fraction for each process differs significantly between the individual objects.
Key words: stars: activity / stars: coronae / stars: late-type / stars: pre-main sequence / X-rays: stars
© ESO, 2006