AAS 199th meeting, Washington, DC, January 2002
Session 62. Dwarf Novae and Other Cataclysmic Variables
Display, Tuesday, January 8, 2002, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall

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[62.02] FUSE FUV Spectroscopy of the Recent, Unexpected Outburst of WZ Sagittae

K. S. Long, C. S. Froning (STScI), C. Knigge (Southampton), E. M. Sion (Villanova), P. Szkody (Univ. of Washington)

The short-period cataclysmic variable WZ Sge underwent its first dwarf nova outburst in 23 years last summer and fall. Because of its proximity, very long interoutburst interval, and period near the minimum expected for CVs, this outburst represents a unique opportunity to exploit the FUV capabilities of FUSE to study the physics of disks in CVs as well as the effect of a dwarf nova outburst on a WD photosphere. FUSE spectra were obtained during the outburst phase and are being obtained during the decline phase. The outburst spectrum, obtained about 7 days after the outburst began, is dominated by a broad (50-60 ÅEW) feature due to OVI and can be characterized in terms of emission from a highly inclined disk modulated by the effects of a highly ionized wind. WZ Sge is fainter in later observations (starting about 46 days into the outburst) and increasingly "red'' in the FUV. The spectral shape increasingly resembles that expected from a metal-enriched WD photosphere. However, some disk contribution must remain at least through day 68 of the outburst. We will discuss our ongoing attempts to model the spectra of the outburst as a combination of disk, wind. We will emphasize specifically the effect of the outburst on the WD surface temperatures and abundances.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: long@stsci.edu

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