Krittapas Chanchaiworawit - Stellar Models and Physical Properties of Be Starsin High Mass X-ray Binaries

This research focused on obtaining the physical properties of the Be stars in high mass X-ray binaries. I created and developed an IDL program to compare the observed fluxes in ultraviolet, Johnson UBV, and 2MASS JHK wavelength bands to the available stellar models from TLUSTY. By finding the flux ratio, I could find the best fit model for each Be star and extract its physical properties such as distance, radius, interstellar reddening, temperature, and mass. Each Be star is also surrounded by a circumstellar disk that produces an infrared excess and H-alpha emission. However, due to the scatter and low correlation of the data between H-alpha equivalent widths and the magnitudes of color indices E(H-K) of the Be stars, the size of circumstellar disks of the Be stars still remain undiscovered.
Krittapas Chanchaiworawit is a senior physics major from Chachoengsao, Thailand. He is working with Professor M. Virginia McSwain in analyzing spectra of Be stars in High Mass X-ray Binaries to get their physical properties such as mass, radius, distance, temperature, and circumstellar disk's size. He is going the University of Florida, Gainesville, to pursue graduate studies in astronomy.