Future microcalorimeter X-ray observations will resolve spectral features in unmatched detail. Understanding of line formation processes in X-rays deserves much attention. The purpose of this paper is to discuss such processes in the presence of a photoionizing source. Line formation processes in one- and two-electron species are broadly categorized into four cases. Case A occurs when the Lyman line optical depths are very small and photoexcitation does not occur. Line photons escape the cloud without any scattering. Case B occurs when the Lyman line optical depths are large enough for photons to undergo multiple scatterings. Case C occurs when a broadband continuum source strikes an optically thin cloud. The Lyman lines are enhanced by induced radiative excitation of the atoms/ions by continuum photons, also known as continuum pumping. A fourth, less studied scenario, where the Case B spectrum is enhanced by continuum pumping, is called Case D. Here, we establish the mathematical foundation of Cases A, B, C, and D in an irradiated cloud with Cloudy. We also show the total X-ray emission spectrum for all four cases within the energy range 0.1-10 keV at the resolving power of XRISM around 6 keV. Additionally, we show that the combined effect of electron scattering and partial blockage of continuum pumping reduces the resonance line intensities. Such reduction increases with column density and can serve as an important tool to measure the column density/optical depth of the cloud.
|State||Published - May 1 2021|
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ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science