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The origin of soft x-rays in DQ herculis

DQ Herculis (Nova Herculis 1934) is a deeply eclipsing cataclysmic variable containing a magnetic white dwarf primary.The accretion disk is thought to block our line of sight to the white dwarf at all orbital phases due to its extreme inclination angle. Nevertheless, soft X-rays were detected from DQ Her with ROSAT PSPC. To probe the origin of these soft X-rays, we have performed Chandra ACIS observations. We confirm that DQ Her is an X-ray source. The bulk of the rays are from a point-like source and exhibit a shallow partial eclipse. We interpret this as due to scattering of the unseen central X-ray source, probably in an accretion disk wind. At the same time, we detect weak extended X-ray features around DQ Her, which we interpret as an X-ray emitting knot in the nova shell.

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