Evolution of X-ray spectra and light curves of V1494 aquilae

J. G. Rohrbach, J. U. Ness, Sumner Starrfield

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15 Scopus citations


We present six Chandra X-ray spectra and light curves obtained for the nova V1494 Aql (1999 No. 2) in outburst. The first three observations were taken with the Advanced CCD Imaging Spectrometer (ACIS-I) on days 134, 187, and 248 after outburst. The count rates were 1.00, 0.69, and 0.53 counts s-1, respectively. We found no significant periodicity in the ACIS light curves. The X-ray spectra show continuum emission and lines originating from N and O. We found acceptable spectral fits using isothermal APEC models with significantly increased elemental abundances of O and N for all observations. On day 248 after outburst a bright soft component appeared in addition to the fading emission lines. The Chandra observations on days 300, 304, and 727 were carried out with the High Resolution Camera/Low Energy Transmission Grating Spectrometer (LETGS). The spectra consist of continuum emission plus strong emission lines of O and N, implying a high abundance of these elements. On day 300, a flare occurred and periodic oscillations were detected in the light curves taken on days 300 and 304. This flare must have originated deep in the outflowing material since it was variable on short timescales. The spectra extracted immediately before and after the flare are remarkably similar, implying that the flare was an extremely isolated event. Our attempts to fit blackbody, cloudy, or APEC models to the LETGS spectra failed, owing to the difficulty in disentangling continuum and emission-line components. The spectrum extracted during the flare shows a significant increase in the strengths of many of the lines and the appearance of several previously undetected lines. In addition, some of the lines seen before and after the flare are not present during the flare. On day 727 only the count rate from the zeroth order could be derived, and the source was too faint for the extraction of a light curve or spectrum.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4627-4632
Number of pages6
JournalAstronomical Journal
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2009


  • X-rays: stars
  • methods: data analysis
  • novae, cataclysmic variables
  • stars: individual (V1494Aql)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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