Slide #1.

X-ray Spectroscopy of Laboratory and Astrophysical Plasmas David Cohen Department of Physics and Astronomy Swarthmore College http://astro.swarthmore.edu/~cohen
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Slide #2.

Broad Questions I’m Trying To Answer 1. How do hot stars produce X-rays? 2. How does material near compact objects respond to accretion-driven X-ray emission? With the launch of Chandra and XMM in 1999 high resolution spectroscopy is possible for the first time.  Quantitative diagnostics of plasma conditions
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Slide #3.

Topic #1: Hot Star X-rays - Chandra HETGS spectrum of the O star  Pup Si XIV  Pup Ne XII (O4 I) Fe Ne XVII XI O VIII 10 Å O VII 20 Å N V
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Slide #4.

Focusing in on a characteristic portion of the 15 Å spectrum 12 Å  Pup (O4 I) A cooler star: coronal/dynamo source Ne X Ne IX Fe XVII
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Slide #5.

Differences in the line shapes become apparent when we look at a single line (here Ne X, Ly) Pup (O4 I) Capella (G2 III) The O star’s lines are Doppler broadened  Unlike in cool stars, x-ray emission in hot stars has something to do with these stars’ stellar winds The shapes of these broadened lines tells us about the kinematics and spatial distribution
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Slide #6.

My students are fitting these x-ray line profiles with wind-shock models fit to data The kinematics of the hot, wind-shocked plasma and the absorption by the cooler portion of the stellar wind reproduces the blueshifted, skewed line profiles.
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Slide #7.

Topic #2: X-ray binaries and AGN have x-ray spectra that are characterized by photoionization (rather than by collisional processes, as is the case with stellar coronae and supernovae). X-ray spectral modeling of photoionized plasmas needs to be benchmarked by laboratory experiments.
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Slide #8.

The Z-Machine at Sandia - world’s most powerful x-ray source (2 MJ in 10 ns  200 TW of X-ray power) Capacitor bank discharges during a ‘shot’. Current implodes a cylindrical wire array, producing x-rays. We field a small container of gas (O, Ne, Ar, Fe…) near the pinch, exposing it to x-rays, and create an x-ray photoionized nebula, which we monitor
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Slide #9.

Students of mine run simulations of the Z-pinch implosion and the irradiance of the gas cell. We also do hydro and spectral modeling of the gas. gas cell
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Slide #10.

We have obtained absorption spectra (to monitor the ionization balance in the gas); Soon we will also obtain emission spectra, which will be compared to Chandra spectra of XRBs and AGNs. Ne IX between 10 Å and 11.5 Å A section of our raw data (above). Note the very high principle quantum number lines of He-like neon.
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Slide #11.

There’s a lot happening in astrophysical x-ray spectroscopy these days Numerical modeling is required to get the most out of this new, high quality data. Connections between astrophysics and laboratory physics are useful.
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