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A Study of Pi Aquarii During a Quasi-normal Star Phase: Refined Fundamental Parameters and Evidence for Binarity

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Anatoly S. Miroshnichenko, Assistant Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: We present the results of recent multicolor photometric and high-resolution spectroscopic observations of the bright Be star Pi Aquarii. Observational data collected from the literature were used to study the star's variations over the last four decades. The star is identified with the IR sources F22227+0107 in the IRAS Faint Point Source catalog and MSX5_G066.0066-44.7392 in the MSX catalog. The variations in near-IR brightness of Pi Aqr are found to be among the largest reported for Be stars. Since 1996, the star has shown only weak signs of circumstellar emission, which has allowed us to refine the fundamental stellar parameters: A_V=0.15 mag., T_eff=24000K, log g=3.9, and M_V=-2.95 mag. A weak emission component of the H-alpha line has been detected during the recent quasi-normal star phase. From analysis of the H-alpha line profiles, we find anti-phased radial velocity variations of the emission component and the photospheric absorption, with a period of 84.1 days and semi-amplitudes of 101.4 and 16.7 km/s, respectively. This result suggests that Pi Aqr may be a binary system consisting of stars with masses of M_1 sin^{3}i = 12.4 M_sun, M_2 sin^{3}i = 2.0 M_sun. We also estimate the orbital inclination angle to be between 50 and 75 degrees. We suggest that the photometric, spectroscopic, and polarimetric variations observed during the second half of the 20th century may be due to variable mass transfer between the binary components.

Additional Information

arXiv:astro-ph/0203357v1 20 Mar 2002
Language: English
Date: 2002
Stars: individual (p Aqr), Circumstellar matter, Stars: emission- line, Be —— binaries: spectroscopic, Techniques: spectroscopic, Techniques: photometric