Method and new tabulations for flux-weighted line-opacity and radiation line-force in supersonic media


Submitted on 21 April 2022


In accelerating and supersonic media, the interaction of photons with spectral lines can be of ultimate importance. However, fully accounting for such line forces currently can only be done by specialised codes in 1-D steady-state flows. More general cases and higher dimensions require alternative approaches. We presented a comprehensive and fast method for computing the radiation line-force using tables of spectral line-strength distribution parameters, which can be applied in arbitrary (multi-D, time-dependent) simulations, including those accounting for the line-deshadowing instability, to compute the appropriate opacities. We assumed local thermodynamic equilibrium to compute a flux-weighted line opacity from $>4$ million spectral lines. We derived the spectral line strength and tabulated the corresponding line-distribution parameters for a range of input densities $\rho\in[10^{-20},10^{-10}]gcm^{-3}$ and temperatures $T\in[10^4,10^{4.7}]K$. We found that the variation of the line distribution parameters plays an essential role in setting the wind dynamics in our models. In our benchmark study, we also found a good overall agreement between the O-star mass-loss rates of our models and those derived from steady-state studies using more detailed radiative transfer. Our models reinforce that self-consistent variation of the line-distribution parameters is important for the dynamics of line-driven flows. Within a well-calibrated O-star regime, our results support the proposed methodology. In practice, utilising the provided tables, yielded a factor $>100$ speed-up in computational time compared to specialised 1-D model-atmosphere codes of line-driven winds, which constitutes an important step towards efficient multi-D simulations. We conclude that our method and tables are ready to be exploited in various radiation-hydrodynamic simulations where the line force is important.


Subjects: Astrophysics - Solar and Stellar Astrophysics; Astrophysics - Astrophysics of Galaxies; Astrophysics - Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics