3D magnetohydrodynamic models of nonthermal photon emission in the binary system γ2 Velorum.
REITBERGER K., KISSMANN R., REIMER A. and REIMER O.
Abstract (from CDS):
Recent reports claiming an association of the massive star binary system γ2 Velorum (WR 11) with a high-energy γ-ray source observed by Fermi-LAT contrast the so far exclusive role of η Carinae as the hitherto only detected γ-ray emitter in the source class of particle-accelerating colliding-wind binary (CWB) systems. We offer support to this claim of association by providing dedicated model predictions for the nonthermal photon emission spectrum of γ2 Velorum. We use 3D magnetohydrodynamic modeling (MHD) to investigate the structure and conditions of the wind-collision region (WCR) of γ2 Velorum including the important effect of radiative braking in the stellar winds. A transport equation is then solved for the entire computational domain to study the propagation of relativistic electrons and protons. The resulting distributions of particles are subsequently used to compute nonthermal photon emission components. In agreement with observation in X-ray spectroscopy, our simulations yield a large shock-cone opening angle. We find the nonthermal γ-ray emission of γ2 Velorum to be of hadronic origin owing to the strong radiation fields in the binary system, which inhibit the acceleration of electrons to energies sufficiently high for efficient inverse-Compton radiation. We also discuss the strong dependence of a hadronic γ-ray component on the energy-dependent diffusion used in the simulations. Of two mass-loss rates for the WR star found in literature, only the higher rate is able to accommodate the observed γ-ray spectrum with reasonable values for important simulation parameters such as the injection ratio of high-energy particles within the WCR.