Monday, January 14, 2013

1301.2475 (G. Guiglion et al.)

Understanding the dynamical structure of pulsating stars: The Baade-Wesselink projection factor of the delta Scuti stars AI Vel and beta Cas    [PDF]

G. Guiglion, N. Nardetto, P. Mathias, A. Domiciano de Souza, E. Poretti, M. Rainer, A. Fokin, D. Mourard, W. Gieren
Aims. The Baade-Wesselink method of distance determination is based on the oscillations of pulsating stars. The key parameter of this method is the projection factor used to convert the radial velocity into the pulsation velocity. Our analysis was aimed at deriving for the first time the projection factor of delta Scuti stars, using high-resolution spectra of the high-amplitude pulsator AI Vel and of the fast rotator beta Cas. Methods. The geometric component of the projection factor (i.e. p0) was calculated using a limb-darkening model of the intensity distribution for AI Vel, and a fast-rotator model for beta Cas. Then, using SOPHIE/OHP data for beta Cas and HARPS/ESO data for AI Vel, we compared the radial velocity curves of several spectral lines forming at different levels in the atmosphere and derived the velocity gradient associated to the spectral-line-forming regions in the atmosphere of the star. This velocity gradient was used to derive a dynamical projection factor p. Results. We find a flat velocity gradient for both stars and finally p = p0 = 1.44 for AI Vel and p = p0 = 1.41 for beta Cas. By comparing Cepheids and delta Scuti stars, these results bring valuable insights into the dynamical structure of pulsating star atmospheres. They suggest that the period-projection factor relation derived for Cepheids is also applicable to delta Scuti stars pulsating in a dominant radial mode.
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