Multiwavelength Observations of the RV Tauri Variable System U Monocerotis: Long-term Variability Phenomena That Can Be Explained by Binary Interactions with a Circumbinary Disk
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2021

We present an X-ray through submillimeter observations of the classical RV Tauri (RVb-type) variable U Mon, a post-asymptotic giant branch (AGB) binary with a circumbinary disk (CBD). Our SMA observations indicate a CBD diameter of less than or similar to 550 au. Our XMM-Newton observations make U Mon the first RV Tauri variable detected in X-rays. The X-ray emission is characteristic of a hot plasma (similar to 10 MK), with L-X =5 x 10(30) erg s(-1), and we consider its possible origin from U Mon, its companion, and/or binary system interactions. Combining DASCH and AAVSO data, we extend the time-series photometric baseline back to the late 1880s and find evidence that U Mon has secular changes that appear to recur on a timescale of similar to 60 yr, possibly caused by a feature in the CBD. From literature radial velocities we find that the binary companion is a similar to 2 M A-type main-sequence star. The orientation of the binary's orbit lies along our line of sight (omega = 95 degrees), such that apastron corresponds to photometric RVb minima, consistent with the post-AGB star becoming obscured by the near side of the CBD. In addition, we find the size of the inner-CBD hole (similar to 4.5-9 au) to be comparable to the binary separation, implying that one or both stars may interact with the CBD at apastron. The obscuration of the post-AGB star implicates the companion as the likely source of the enhanced H alpha observed at RVb minima and of the X-ray emission that may arise from accreted material.

Submillimeter astronomy

Spectral energy distribution

Binary stars

Post-asymptotic giant branch stars

Circumstellar matter

RV Tauri variable stars

X-ray astronomy


Laura D. Vega

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Vanderbilt University

Keivan G. Stassun

Vanderbilt University


Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

Tomasz Kaminski

Polish Academy of Sciences

Laurence Sabin

Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico

Eric M. Schlegel

University of Texas at San Antonio

Wouter Vlemmings

Chalmers, Rymd-, geo- och miljövetenskap, Astronomi och plasmafysik

Joel H. Kastner

Rochester Institute of Technology

Sofia Ramstedt

Uppsala universitet

Patricia T. Boyd

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Astrophysical Journal

0004-637X (ISSN) 1538-4357 (eISSN)

Vol. 909 2 138


Astronomi, astrofysik och kosmologi





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