Episodic dust formation by HD 192641 (WR 137) - II

P. M. Williams, M. R. Kidger, K. A. van der Hucht, P. W. Morris, M. Tapia, M. Perinotto, L. Morbidelli, A. Fitzsimmons, D. M. Anthony, J. J. Caldwell, A. Alonso, V. Wild

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We present new infrared photometry of the WC7-type Wolf-Rayet star HD 192641 (WR 137) from 1985 to 1999, These data track the cooling of the dust cloud formed in the 1982-84 dust-formation episode from 1985 to 1991, the increase of the infrared flux from 1994.5 to a new dust-formation maximum in 1997 and its subsequent fading, From these and earlier data we derive a period of 4765 +/- 50d (13.05 +/- 0.15 yr) for the dust-formation episodes. Between dust-emission episodes, the infrared spectral energy distribution has the form of a power law lambdaF(lambda proportional to) lambda (-1.86) . The rising branch of the infrared light curve (1994-97) differs in form from that of the episodic dust-maker WR 125, Time-dependent modelling shows that this difference can be attributed to a different time dependence of dust formation in WR 137, which occurred approximately proportional tot(2) until maximum, whereas that of WR 125 could be described by a step function, akin to a threshold effect. For an adopted distance of 1.6 kpc, the rate of dust formation was found to be 5.0 x 10(-8) M-circle dot yr(-1) at maximum, accounting for a fraction f(c) approximate to 1.5 x 10(-3) of the carbon flowing in the stellar wind. The fading branches of the light curves show evidence for secondary 'mini-eruptions' in 1987, 1988 and 1990, behaviour very different from that of the prototypical episodic dust-maker HD 193793 (`WR 140), and suggesting the presence in the WR 137 stellar wind of large-scale structures that are crossed by the wind-wind collision region.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)156-166
Number of pages11
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jun 2001




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