Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 351, L83-L88 (2004/July-1)
High-resolution imaging of the HeII λ4686 emission line nebula associated with the ultraluminous X-ray source in Holmberg II.
KAARET P., WARD M.J. and ZEZAS A.
Abstract (from CDS):
We present Hubble Space Telescope images of the Heiii region surrounding the bright X-ray source in the dwarf irregular galaxy Holmberg II. Using Chandra, we find a position for the X-ray source of (J2000) with an uncertainty of 0.6 arcsec. We identify a bright, point-like optical counterpart centred in the nebula with the X-ray source. The optical magnitude and colour of the counterpart are consistent with a star with spectral type between O4V and B3 Ib at a distance of 3.05 Mpc or reprocessed emission from an X-ray illuminated accretion disc. The nebular Heii luminosity is 2.7 x 1036 erg/s. The morphology of the Heii, Hβ and [Oi] emission is consistent with being due to X-ray photoionization and is inconsistent with narrow beaming of the X-ray emission. A spectral model consisting of a multicolour disc blackbody with inverse-Compton emission from a hot corona gives a good fit to X-ray spectra obtained with XMM-Newton. Using the fitted X-ray spectrum, we calculate the relation between the Heii and X-ray luminosity and find that the Heii flux implies a lower bound on the X-ray luminosity in the range 4 to 6x1039 erg/s if the extrapolation of the X-ray spectrum between 54 and 300 eV is accurate. A compact object mass of at least 25 to 40 M☉would be required to avoid violating the Eddington limit.
black hole physics - galaxies: individual: Holmberg II - galaxies: starburst - galaxies: stellar content - X-rays: galaxies