BeppoSAX detection of the Fe K line in the nearby starburst galaxy NGC 253

M. Persic*, S. Mariani, M. Cappi, L. Bassani, L. Danese, A. J. Dean, G. Di Cocco, A. Franceschini, L. K. Hunt, F. Matteucci, E. Palazzi, G. G.C. Palumbo, Y. Rephaeli, P. Salucci, A. Spizzichino

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


We present BeppoSAX results on the nearby starburst galaxy NGC 253. Although extended, a large fraction of the X-ray emission comes from the nuclear region. Preliminary analysis of the LECS/MECS/PDS ∼ 0.2-60 keV data from the central 4′ region indicates that the continuum is well fitted by two thermal models: a "soft" component with kT ∼ 0.9 keV, and a "hard" component with kT ∼ 6 keV absorbed by a column density of ∼ 1.2 × 1022 cm-2. For the first time in this object, the FeK line at 6.7keV is detected, with an equivalent width of ∼ 300eV. This detection, together with the shape of the 2-60 keV continuum, implies that most of the hard X-ray emission is thermal in origin, and constrains the iron abundances of this component to be ∼ 0.25 of solar. Other lines clearly detected are Si, S and Fe L/Ne, in agreement with previous ASCA results. We discuss our results in the context of the starburst-driven galactic superwind model.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)L33-L36
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Issue number2
StatePublished - 10 Nov 1998


  • Galaxies: individual: NGC 253
  • Galaxies: spiral
  • Galaxies: starburst


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