Probing Wolf-Rayet Winds: Chandra/HETG X-Ray Spectra of WR 6

Kavli Affiliate: David P. Huenemoerder

| First 5 Authors: David P. Huenemoerder, Kenneth G. Gayley, Wolf-Rainer Hamann, Richard Ignace, Joy S. Nichols

| Summary:

With a deep Chandra/HETGS exposure of WR 6, we have resolved emission lines
whose profiles show that the X-rays originate from a uniformly expanding
spherical wind of high X-ray-continuum optical depth. The presence of strong
helium-like forbidden lines places the source of X-ray emission at tens to
hundreds of stellar radii from the photosphere. Variability was present in
X-rays and simultaneous optical photometry, but neither were correlated with
the known period of the system or with each other. An enhanced abundance of
sodium revealed nuclear processed material, a quantity related to the
evolutionary state of the star. The characterization of the extent and nature
of the hot plasma in WR 6 will help to pave the way to a more fundamental
theoretical understanding of the winds and evolution of massive stars.

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