Letter to the Editor
Pa-beta as a chromospheric diagnostic in M dwarfs
Received 7 November 1997 / Accepted 12 December 1997
We have obtained, for the first time, a high resolution near-infrared spectrum in the region of Pa of a chromospherically active M dwarf (AU Mic). We demonstrate that both Pa and H can be fit with a model of large chromospheric pressure, but that the two lines indicate clearly different values of the exact pressure. There are several important types of missing physics that need to be included in the calculations before the importance of this apparent discrepancy can be assessed. Nevertheless, the approximate agreement of the two lines lends support to an earlier theoretical result that the Paschen series is a useful chromospheric diagnostic in M dwarfs.
Key words: stars: late-type stars: activity stars: chromospheres line: formation
Send offprint requests to: C.I. Short, University of Georgia, Physics and Astronomy, Athens, GA, 30602-2451, USA
© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1998
Online publication: February 16, 1998