Are WC9 Wolf-Rayet stars in colliding-wind binaries?

P. M. Williams (1), K. A. van der Hucht (2,3) and G. Rauw (4)

1. Institute for Astronomy, University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom;
2. SRON Netherlands Institute for Space Research, Utrecht, The Netherlands;
3. Astronomical Institute Anton Pannekoek, University of Amsterdam,
The Netherlands;
4. University of Liege, Astrophysics Institute, Belgium

We present results from a spectroscopic search for massive companions to dust-making Galactic WC9 stars as a step to testing the paradigm that dust formation in these systems requires colliding winds to produce over densities. We find evidence for OB companions to the WC9 stars WR 59 and WR 65, but not WR 121 or WR 117.
We identify lines of N III-IV and possibly N II in the spectrum of WR 88, one of the few Galactic WC9 stars which do not make circumstellar dust, and suggest that WR 88 is a transitional WN-WC9 object and less evolved than the other WC9 stars. On the other hand, the possible identification of a strong emission line at 4176A in the spectrum of WR 117 with Ne I suggests that this star is more evolved than other WC9 stars studied.

Reference: Contribution to: ``Massive Stars and High-Energy Emission in OB Associations''; JENAM 2005, held in Li\`ege (Belgium)
Status: Conference proceedings