8th HEAD Meeting, 8-11 September, 2004
Session 29 X-ray Binaries
Oral, Friday, September 10, 2004, 2:00-3:30pm

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[29.06] High-angular Resolution X-ray Imaging of Symbiotic Systems

M. Karovska (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics)

Long-term studies of several symbiotic binaries using a combination of UV, optical, and radio high-angular resolution imaging and spectroscopy have detected dramatic changes in the spatial and spectral distribution of the emission in these systems. The changes include significant variability of the accretion rate on the white dwarf companion and jet-like outflows. However, there are many aspects of accretion processes in these interacting binaries, and of wind accretion processes in particular, that are not yet understood.

Chandra's sub-arcsecond angular resolution offers unprecedented opportunities for detailed studies of accretion phenomena in symbiotics at X-ray wavelengths where the signatures of accretion processes are very prominent. We present examples of recent Chandra studies of accretion related phenomena in nearby symbiotic systems, including detections of outbursts and imaging of jet-like structures and outflows. We discuss possible physical mechanisms causing this activity and future observational possibilities.

M.K. is a member of the Chandra X-ray Center, which is operated by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory under contract to NASA NAS8-39073.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 36 #3
© 2004. The American Astronomical Soceity.