Polarization variability due to clumps in the winds of Wolf-Rayet stars

Type Conference Paper
Names Q. Li, J. P. Cassinelli, J. C. Brown, R. Ignace
Proceedings Title AIP Conference Proceedings
Conference Name Stellar Polarimetry: From Birth to Death
Volume 1429
Pages 168-171
Date May 1, 2012
DOI 10.1063/1.3701920
ISBN 0094-243X
URL http://adsabs.org/2012AIPC.1429.168L
Library Catalog labs.adsabs.harvard.edu
Abstract Wolf-Rayet (WR) stars are understood to have clumpy winds [1]. Robert et al. [2] found a statistical relation between the variations of the polarization and the scattering light intensity, R = σp/σphot ~ 0.05. To explain this result, we propose a model in which clumps are ejected from the surface of WR stars uniformly in space with a Gaussian time interval distribution. According to the observed R along with the subpeaks on the emission lines of WR stars, we can obtain the parameters of the velocity law index β, and of the clump ejection rate in a flow time N. Also, the fraction η of the total mass loss rate contained in the clumps can be found from the observed polarization.
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