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Measurements of Outburst Characteristics, Temperatures, Densities and Abundances in the Ejecta of Nova Muscae 1983

  • B.J.M. Hassall (a1), M.A.J. Snijders (a2), A. W. Harris (a3), A. Cassatella (a4), M. Dennefeld (a5), M. Friedjung (a5), M. Bode (a6), D. Whittet (a6), P. Whitelock (a7), J. Menzies (a7), T. Lloyd Evans (a7) and G.T. Bath (a8)...

Extract

We present results for IUE, optical and IR observations of Nova Muscae 1983, from early outburst to January 1986 obtained by the European IUE Target of Opportunity Team. A detailed description of the data will appear elsewhere (Hassall et al., 1989), but here we summarise the most important results.

The outburst lightcurve initially indicated a fast speed class for this nova, but was later characterised by a rather slow optical decline with two or more secondary outbursts with sudden doubling of the bolometric flux. In Figure 1, we show the contributions of X-ray, UV, optical and IR to the total luminosity for 1200 days following outburst, assuming a distance of 4.3kpc and an interstellar extinction E(B-V)=0.5. In the absence of dust formation, first the UV and later the X-ray flux (Ögelman et al, 1984) dominate the radiative energy late into the nebular phase. There was a plateau stage lasting about 500 days, with a bolometric luminosity of ~ 1038ergs s−1 near the Eddington limit. The secondary outbursts were thus super-Eddington. We estimate a total outburst energy (including kinetic and gravitational potential energy of the ejecta) of ~ 5·l046 ergs, corresponding to a mass of ~ 4·10−6 M º of hydrogen burnt in the thermonuclear runaway.

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Copyright

References

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Cameron, 1982, “Essays in Nuclear Astrophysics” eds. Barnes, et al CUP p23.
Hassall, et al., 1989 (to be submitted to Mon. Not. R. astr. Soc.)
Ögelman, et al., 1984, Astrophys. J. Lett. 287, L31.
Stickland, et al. 1981, Mon. Not. R. astr. Soc., 197, 107.
Storey, et al. 1981, Mon. Not. R. astr. Soc., 185, 27p.
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Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union
  • ISSN: -
  • EISSN: 0252-9211
  • URL: /core/journals/proceedings-of-the-international-astronomical-union
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