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The FU Orionis outburst as a thermal accretion event: Observational constraints for protostellar disk models
Bell, K. R.; Lin, D. N. C.; Hartmann, L. W.; Kenyon, S. J.
AA(Universtiy of California, Santa Cruz, California, US), AB(Universtiy of California, Santa Cruz, California, US), AC(Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, Massachusetts, US), AD(Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, Massachusetts, US)
Astrophysical Journal, Part 1 (ISSN 0004-637X), vol. 444, no. 1, p. 376-395 (ApJ Homepage)
Publication Date:
NASA/STI Keywords:
Accretion Disks, Pre-Main Sequence Stars, Stellar Mass Accretion, Stellar Mass Ejection, Stellar Models, Thermal Instability, Variable Stars, Light Curve, Perturbation, Spectral Energy Distribution, Spectral Line Width, Stellar Color, Stellar Evolution
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The results of the time-dependent disk models developed in Bell & Lin are compared with observed properties of FU Orionis variables. Specific models are fit to the light curves of Fu Ori, V1515 Cyg, and V1057 Cyg. The slow risetime of V1515 Cyg can be matched by a self-regulated outburst model. The rapid risetimes of FU Ori and V1057 Cyg can be fitted with the application of modest perturbations to the disk surface density. Model disks display spectral features characteristic of observed objects. The color evolution of V1057 Cyg is naturally explained if mass flux drops in the inner disk (r less than 1/4 AU) while remaining steady in the outer disk. The decrease in optical line width (rotational velocity) observed during the decay of V1057 Cyg may be accounted for by an outward-propagating ionization front. We predict that before final decay to the quiescent phase, short-wavelength line widths (lambda less than 1.5 microns) will again increase. It is suggested that FU Orionis outbursts primarily occur to systems during the embedded phase with ages less than several times 105 yr.

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Database: Astronomy
arXiv e-prints