Logarithmically scaled, three colour XMM-Newton EPIC images of the central area of M 31 combining PN, MOS1, and MOS2 data of all five observations for 2007/8 (top panel) and 2008/9 (bottom panel). Red, green, and blue show the (0.2–0.5) keV, (0.5–1.0) keV and (1.0–2.0) keV bands. Supersoft X-ray sources show up in red. The data in each colour band were binned in 2″ × 2″ pixels and smoothed using a Gaussian of FWHM 5″. The counterparts of optical novae detected in this work are marked with white circles. For M31N 1997-11a, M31N 2003-08c, M31N 2004-01b, M31N 2007-11a, M31N 2008-05b, and M31N 2008-06a only the positions are designated, because they are not visible in these images but are detected in Chandra images. The non-nova SSSs detected in this work are marked with white boxes. The large white box includes the central region of M 31, which is shown as a Chandra composite in Fig. 2.
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