X-raying the super star clusters in the Galactic center

L.M. Oskinova

Astrophysik, Potsdam University, Germany

The Galactic center harbors some of the most massive star clusters known
in the Galaxy: the Arches and the Quintuplet. Based on the Chandra
observations of these clusters (PI: Wang) which recently became public,
I discuss the X-ray emission from the massive stars in these clusters.
Confirming the general trend for Wolf-Rayet (WR) stars being X-ray dim,
none of them is detected in the Quintuplet cluster. The most massive
star known in the Galaxy, the Pistol star, is also not detected, invoking
questions regarding the proposed binary nature of this object. X-ray emission
in the Arches cluster is dominated by three stellar point sources. All three
sources as well as the cluster's diffuse radiation show strong
emission at 6.4-6.7 keV, indicating the presence of fluorescenting cool
material. The Arches point sources may be identified as colliding wind binaries,
albeit other possibilities cannot be ruled out.

Reference: JENAM 2005: 'Distant Worlds': Workshop:
Massive Stars and High-Energy Emission in OB Associations
Status: Conference proceedings

Weblink: http://www.astro.physik.uni-potsdam.de/~ftp/oskinova/x-ray_ssc.ps


Email: lida@astro.physik.uni-potsdam.de