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Sample records for accreting x-ray pulsars

  1. Accreting X-ray Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson-Hodge, Colleen A.

    2009-01-01

    This presentation describes the behavior of matter in environments with extreme magnetic and gravitational fields, explains the instability/stability of accretion disks in certain systems, and discusses how emergent radiation affects accretion flow. Magnetic field measurements are obtained by measuring the lowest cyclotron absorption line energy, observing the cutoff of accretion due to centrifugal inhibition and measuring the spin-up rate at high luminosity.

  2. Accretion powered X-ray pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    White, N. E.; Swank, J. H.; Holt, S. S.

    1982-01-01

    A unified description of the properties of 14 X-ray pulsars is presented and compared with the current theoretical understanding of these systems. The sample extends over six orders of magnitude in luminosity, with the only trend in the phase averaged spectra being that the lower luminosity systems appear to have less abrupt high energy cutoffs. There is no correlation of luminosity with power law index, high energy cutoff energy or iron line EW. Detailed pulse phase spectroscopy is given for five systems.

  3. Quasispherical subsonic accretion in X-ray pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shakura, Nikolai I.; Postnov, Konstantin A.; Kochetkova, A. Yu; Hjalmarsdotter, L.

    2013-04-01

    A theoretical model is considered for quasispherical subsonic accretion onto slowly rotating magnetized neutron stars. In this regime, the accreting matter settles down subsonically onto the rotating magnetosphere, forming an extended quasistatic shell. Angular momentum transfer in the shell occurs via large-scale convective motions resulting, for observed pulsars, in an almost iso-angular-momentum \\omega \\sim 1/R^2 rotation law inside the shell. The accretion rate through the shell is determined by the ability of the plasma to enter the magnetosphere due to Rayleigh-Taylor instabilities, with allowance for cooling. A settling accretion regime is possible for moderate accretion rates \\dot M \\lesssim \\dot M_* \\simeq 4\\times 10^{16} g s ^{-1}. At higher accretion rates, a free-fall gap above the neutron star magnetosphere appears due to rapid Compton cooling, and the accretion becomes highly nonstationary. Observations of spin-up/spin-down rates of quasispherically wind accreting equilibrium X-ray pulsars with known orbital periods (e.g., GX 301-2 and Vela X-1) enable us to determine the main dimensionless parameters of the model, as well as to estimate surface magnetic field of the neutron star. For equilibrium pulsars, the independent measurements of the neutron star magnetic field allow for an estimate of the stellar wind velocity of the optical companion without using complicated spectroscopic measurements. For nonequilibrium pulsars, a maximum value is shown to exist for the spin-down rate of the accreting neutron star. From observations of the spin-down rate and the X-ray luminosity in such pulsars (e.g., GX 1+4, SXP 1062, and 4U 2206+54), a lower limit can be put on the neutron star magnetic field, which in all cases turns out to be close to the standard value and which agrees with cyclotron line measurements. Furthermore, both explains the spin-up/spin-down of the pulsar frequency on large time-scales and also accounts for the irregular short

  4. Partial accretion in the propeller stage of accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gungor, Can; Gogus, Ersin; Eksi, Kazim Yavuz; Guver, Tolga

    2016-07-01

    Accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars (AMXPs) are very important objects for studying the stages of disk - magnetosphere interaction as these objects may show different stages in an observable duration. A typical X-ray light curve of an outburst of AMXP has a fast rise and an exponential decay phases. Most of the outbursts have a knee where the flux goes from the slow decay stage to the rapid decay stage. This knee may be linked to the transition from accretion to propeller stage. Since, after the knee, the X-ray luminosity of the source is still higher than its quiescent level, the accretion from inner disc must be continuing in the propeller stage with a lower fraction than in the accretion stage. The X-ray does not only come from accretion onto the poles but the inner parts of the disk may also contribute to the total X-ray luminosity. To infer what fraction (f) of the inflowing matter accretes onto the star the light curve in the propeller stage, one should first separate the emission originating from the disk and obtain a light curve of X-ray emission only from the magnetic poles. We provide a new method to infer from the observational data the fraction of accreting matter onto the neutron star pole to the mass transferring from outer layers of the disc to the inner disc (f), as a function of the fastness parameter (ω_{*}), assuming the knee is due to the transition from accretion to the propeller stage. We transform X-ray luminosities to the mass fraction, f, and the time scale of outburst to fastness parameter, ω_*. It allows us to compare different types of outbursts of an AMXP in f - ω_* space which is universal for a unique system. We analysed the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer/Proportional Counter Array (RXTE/PCA) observations of the 2000 and the 2011 outbursts and the Swift Gamma-Ray Burst Mission/X-ray Telescope (SWIFT/XRT) data of the 2013 outburst of the most known AMXP, Aql X-1 using a combination of blackbody representing hot spot, disk blackbody

  5. Spectral Modeling of the Comptonized Continua of Accreting X-Ray Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolff, Michael Thomas; Pottschmidt, Katja; Becker, Peter A.; Marcu, Diana; Wilms, Jörn; Wood, Kent S.

    2015-01-01

    We are undertaking a program to analyze the X-ray spectra of the accretion flows onto strongly magnetic neutron stars in high mass binary systems such as Cen X-3, and XTE J1946+274. These accreting pulsars typically have X-ray spectra consisting of broad Comptonized cutoff power-laws. Current theory suggests these X-ray spectra result from radiation-dominated shocks that develop in the high-velocity magnetically channeled plasma accretion flows onto the surfaces of the neutron stars. These X-ray pulsars often, but not always, show cyclotron resonant scattering features implying neutron star surface magnetic field strengths above 1012 G. Proper fitting of cyclotron line centroids (for example, to investigate how the line centroid varies with X-ray luminosity) requires a robust model for the Comptonized X-ray continuum upon which the cyclotron lines are superposed, and this can be provided by a continuum model based on the physics of the accretion column.We discuss in this presentation our ongoing program for the analysis of the X-ray spectra formed in these systems. Our program consists of two parts. First, we are modeling the X-ray spectra from the Suzaku X-ray satellite of accreting X-ray pulsars Cen X-3 and XTE J1946+274 utilizing the best currently existing empirical models. The second part of our program is building a new analysis tool based on the analytical model of Becker and Wolff (2007). In the high temperature optically thick plasma flows, the processes of bremsstrahlung emission from the hot plasma, black body emission from a thermal mound near the neutron star surface, and cyclotron emission from electrons in the first Landau excited state, all contribute to the total observed X-ray spectrum. We show recent results from our new implementation and its comparison with the Suzaku data for these X-ray pulsars.This research is supported by the NASA Astrophysics Data Analysis Program.

  6. On the dependence of the X-ray continuum variations with luminosity in accreting X-ray pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Postnov, K. A.; Gornostaev, M. I.; Klochkov, D.; Laplace, E.; Lukin, V. V.; Shakura, N. I.

    2015-09-01

    Using RXTE/ASM archival data, we investigate the behaviour of the spectral hardness ratio as a function of X-ray luminosity in a sample of six transient X-ray pulsars (EXO 2030+375, GX 304-1, 4U 0115+63, V 0332+63, A 0535+26 and MXB 0656-072). In all sources we find that the spectral hardness ratio defined as F5-12 keV/F1.33-3 keV increases with the ASM flux (1.33-12 keV) at low luminosities and then saturates or even slightly decreases above some critical X-ray luminosity falling into the range ˜(3-7) × 1037 erg s-1. Two-dimensional structure of accretion columns in the radiation-diffusion limit is calculated for two possible geometries (filled and hollow cylinder) for mass accretion rates dot{M} ranging from 1017 to 1.2 × 1018 g s-1. The observed spectral behaviour in the transient X-ray pulsars with increasing dot{M} can be reproduced by a Compton-saturated sidewall emission from optically thick magnetized accretion columns with taking into account the emission reflected from the neutron star atmosphere. At dot{M} above some critical value dot{M}_cr˜ (6-8)× 10^{17} g s-1, the height of the column becomes such that the contribution of the reflected component to the total emission starts decreasing, which leads to the saturation and even slight decrease of the spectral hardness. Hollow-cylinder columns have a smaller height than the filled-cylinder ones, and the contribution of the reflected component in the total emission does not virtually change with dot{M} (and hence the hardness of the continuum monotonically increases) up to higher mass accretion rates than dot{M}_cr for the filled columns.

  7. A new model for the X-ray continuum of the magnetized accreting pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farinelli, Ruben; Ferrigno, Carlo; Bozzo, Enrico; Becker, Peter A.

    2016-06-01

    Context. Accreting highly magnetized pulsars in binary systems are among the brightest X-ray emitters in our Galaxy. Although a number of high-quality broad-band (0.1-100 keV) X-ray observations are available, the spectral energy distribution of these sources is usually investigated by adopting pure phenomenological models rather than models linked to the physics of accretion. Aims: In this paper, a detailed spectral study of the X-ray emission recorded from the high-mass X-ray binary pulsars Cen X-3, 4U 0115+63, and Her X-1 is carried out by using BeppoSAX and joined Suzaku +NuStar data, together with an advanced version of the compmag model, which provides a physical description of the high-energy emission from accreting pulsars, including the thermal and bulk Comptonization of cyclotron and bremsstrahlung seed photons along the neutron star accretion column. Methods: The compmag model is based on an iterative method for solving second-order partial differential equations, whose convergence algorithm has been improved and consolidated during the preparation of this paper. Results: Our analysis shows that the broad-band X-ray continuum of all considered sources can be self-consistently described by the compmag model. The cyclotron absorption features (not included in the model) can be accounted for by using Gaussian components. From the fits of the compmag model to the data we inferred the physical properties of the accretion columns in all sources, finding values reasonably close to those theoretically expected according to our current understanding of accretion in highly magnetized neutron stars. Conclusions: The updated version of the compmag model has been tailored to the physical processes that are known to occur in the columns of highly magnetized accreting neutron stars and it can thus provide a better understanding of the high-energy radiation from these sources. The availability of broad-band high-quality X-ray data, such as those provided by BeppoSAX in

  8. On the maximum accretion luminosity of magnetized neutron stars: connecting X-ray pulsars and ultraluminous X-ray sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mushtukov, Alexander A.; Suleimanov, Valery F.; Tsygankov, Sergey S.; Poutanen, Juri

    2015-12-01

    We study properties of luminous X-ray pulsars using a simplified model of the accretion column. The maximal possible luminosity is calculated as a function of the neutron star (NS) magnetic field and spin period. It is shown that the luminosity can reach values of the order of 1040 erg s-1 for the magnetar-like magnetic field (B ≳ 1014 G) and long spin periods (P ≳ 1.5 s). The relative narrowness of an area of feasible NS parameters which are able to provide higher luminosities leads to the conclusion that L ≃ 1040 erg s-1 is a good estimate for the limiting accretion luminosity of an NS. Because this luminosity coincides with the cut-off observed in the high-mass X-ray binaries luminosity function which otherwise does not show any features at lower luminosities, we can conclude that a substantial part of ultraluminous X-ray sources are accreting neutron stars in binary systems.

  9. Application of a physical continuum model to recent X-ray observations of accreting pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marcu-Cheatham, Diana Monica; Pottschmidt, Katja; Wolff, Michael Thomas; Becker, Peter A.; Wood, Kent S.; Wilms, Joern; Britton Hemphill, Paul; Gottlieb, Amy; Fuerst, Felix; Schwarm, Fritz-Walter; Ballhausen, Ralf

    2016-04-01

    We present a uniform spectral analysis in the 0.5-50 keV energy range of a sample of accreting pulsars by applying an empirical broad-band continuum cut-off power-law model. We also apply the newly implemented physical continuum model developed by Becker and Wolff (2007, ApJ 654, 435) to a number of high-luminosity sources. The X-ray spectral formation process in this model consists of the Comptonization of bremsstrahlung, cyclotron, and black body photons emitted by the hot, magnetically channeled, accreting plasma near the neutron star surface. This model describes the spectral formation in high-luminosity accreting pulsars, where the dominant deceleration mechanism is via a radiation-dominated radiative shock. The resulting spectra depend on five physical parameters: the mass accretion rate, the radius of the accretion column, the electron temperature and electron scattering cross-sections inside the column, and the magnetic field strength. The empirical model is fitted to Suzaku data of a sample of high-mass X-ray binaries covering a broad luminosity range (0.3-5 x 10 37 erg/s). The physical model is fitted to Suzaku data from luminous sources: LMC X-4, Cen X-3, GX 304-1. We compare the results of the two types of modeling and summarize how they can provide new insight into the process of accretion onto magnetized neutron stars.

  10. Signs of magnetic accretion in the young Be/X-ray pulsar SXP 1062

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ikhsanov, N. R.

    2012-07-01

    The spin behaviour of the neutron star in the newly discovered young Be/X-ray long-period pulsar SXP 1062 is discussed. The star is observed to rotate with the period of 1062 s, and spin down at the rate ˜-2.6 × 10-12 Hz s-1. I show that all of the conventional accretion scenarios encounter major difficulties in explaining the rapid spin-down of the pulsar. These difficulties can be, however, avoided within the magnetic accretion scenario in which the neutron star is assumed to accrete from a magnetized wind. The spin-down rate of the pulsar can be explained within this scenario provided the surface magnetic field of the neutron star is B*˜ 4 × 1013 G. I show that the age of the pulsar in this case lies in the range (2-4) × 104 yr, which is consistent with observations. The spin evolution of the pulsar is briefly discussed.

  11. Spectral formation in accreting X-ray pulsars: bimodal variation of the cyclotron energy with luminosity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Becker, P. A.; Klochkov, D.; Schönherr, G.; Nishimura, O.; Ferrigno, C.; Caballero, I.; Kretschmar, P.; Wolff, M. T.; Wilms, J.; Staubert, R.

    2012-08-01

    Context. Accretion-powered X-ray pulsars exhibit significant variability of the cyclotron resonance scattering feature (CRSF) centroid energy on pulse-to-pulse timescales, and also on much longer timescales. Two types of spectral variability are observed. For sources in group 1, the CRSF energy is negatively correlated with the variable source luminosity, and for sources in group 2, the opposite behavior is observed. The physical basis for this bimodal behavior is currently not well understood. Aims: We explore the hypothesis that the accretion dynamics in the group 1 sources is dominated by radiation pressure near the stellar surface, and that Coulomb interactions decelerate the gas to rest in the group 2 sources. Methods: We derive a new expression for the critical luminosity, Lcrit, such that radiation pressure decelerates the matter to rest in sources with X-ray luminosity LX > Lcrit. The formula for Lcrit is based on a simple physical model for the structure of the accretion column in luminous X-ray pulsars that takes into account radiative deceleration, the energy dependence of the cyclotron cross section, the thermodynamics of the accreting gas, the dipole structure of the pulsar magnetosphere, and the diffusive escape of radiation through the column walls. We show that for typical neutron star parameters, Lcrit = 1.5 × 1037 B1216/15 erg s-1, where B12 is the surface magnetic field strength in units of 1012 G. Results: The formula for the critical luminosity is evaluated for five sources, using the maximum value of the CRSF centroid energy to estimate the surface magnetic field strength B12. The results confirm that the group 1 sources are supercritical (LX > Lcrit) and the group 2 sources are subcritical (LX < Lcrit), although the situation is less clear for those highly variable sources that cross over the line LX = Lcrit. We also explain the variation of the CRSF energy with luminosity as a consequence of the variation of the characteristic emission

  12. Pulse-to-pulse variations in accreting X-ray pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kretschmar, Peter; Marcu, Diana; Kühnel, Matthias; Klochkov, Dmitry; Pottschmidt, Katja; Staubert, Rüdiger; Wilson-Hodge, Colleen A.; Jenke, Peter A.; Caballero, Isabel; Fürst, Felix

    2014-01-01

    In most accreting X-ray pulsars, the periodic signal is very clear and easily shows up as soon as data covering sufficient pulse periods (a few ten) are available. The mean pulse profile is often quite typical for a given source and with minor variations repeated and recognisable across observations done years or even decades apart. At the time scale of individual pulses, significant pulse-to-pulse variations are commonly observed. While at low energies some of these variations might be explained by absorption, in the hard X-rays they will reflect changes in the accretion and subsequent emission. The amount of these variations appears to be quite different between sources and contains information about the surrounding material as well ass possibly interactions at the magnetosphere. We investigate such variations for a sample of well-known sources.

  13. An Investigation of Luminous X-Ray Pulsars: Exploring Accretion Onto the Magnetized Neutron Star LMC X-4

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brumback, McKinley

    2016-04-01

    X-ray pulsars are neutron stars in which magnetic forces dominate accretion within the magnetosphere. These systems offer unique laboratories to study magnetic accretion and the behavior of matter under extreme densities, magnetic fields, and gravitational forces. Using joint observations with NuSTAR and XMM-Newton, we observe the complete precession of the warped accretion disk around the X-ray pulsar LMC X-4, and measure the relative phase between the pulsar beam and the softer X-ray photons reprocessed by the disk. This allows us to perform tomography to explore the inner magnetized accretion flow. Additionally, we investigate the unusual flaring events observed from LMC X-4 during October and November of 2015.

  14. SIGNS OF MAGNETIC ACCRETION IN THE X-RAY PULSAR BINARY GX 301-2

    SciTech Connect

    Ikhsanov, Nazar R.; Finger, Mark H.

    2012-07-01

    Observations of the cyclotron resonance scattering feature in the X-ray spectrum of GX 301-2 suggest that the surface field of the neutron star is B{sub CRSF} {approx} 4 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 12} G. The same value has been derived in modeling the rapid spin-up episodes in terms of the Keplerian disk accretion scenario. However, the spin-down rate observed during the spin-down trends significantly exceeds the value expected in currently used spin-evolution scenarios. This indicates that either the surface field of the star exceeds 50 B{sub CRSF} or a currently used accretion scenario is incomplete. We show that the above discrepancy can be avoided if the accreting material is magnetized. The magnetic pressure in the accretion flow increases more rapidly than its ram pressure and, under certain conditions, significantly affects the accretion picture. The spin-down torque applied to the neutron star in this case is larger than that evaluated within a non-magnetized accretion scenario. We find that the observed spin evolution of the pulsar can be explained in terms of the magnetically controlled accretion flow scenario provided the surface field of the neutron star is {approx}B{sub CRSF}.

  15. Contrasting Behaviour from Two Be/X-ray Binary Pulsars: Insights into Differing Neutron Star Accretion Modes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Townsend, L. J.; Drave, S. P.; Hill, A. B.; Coe, M. J.; Corbet, R. H. D.; Bird, A. J.

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we present the identification of two periodic X-ray signals coming from the direction of the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC). On detection with the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE), the 175.4 s and 85.4 s pulsations were considered to originate from new Be/X-ray binary (BeXRB) pulsars with unknown locations. Using rapid follow-up INTEGRAL and XMM-Newton observations, we show the first pulsar (designated SXP175) to be coincident with a candidate high-mass X-ray binary (HMXB) in the northern bar region of the SMC undergoing a small Type II outburst. The orbital period (87d) and spectral class (B0-B0.5IIIe) of this system are determined and presented here for the first time. The second pulsar is shown not to be new at all, but is consistent with being SXP91.1 - a pulsar discovered at the very beginning of the 13 year long RXTE key monitoring programme of the SMC. Whilst it is theoretically possible for accreting neutron stars to change spin period so dramatically over such a short time, the X-ray and optical data available for this source suggest this spin-up is continuous during long phases of X-ray quiescence, where accretion driven spin-up of the neutron star should be minimal.

  16. A radiation-hydrodynamics model of accretion columns for ultra-luminous X-ray pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kawashima, Tomohisa; Mineshige, Shin; Ohsuga, Ken; Ogawa, Takumi

    2016-09-01

    Prompted by the recent discovery of pulsed emission from an ultra-luminous X-ray source, M 82 X-2 ("ULX-pulsar"), we perform a two-dimensional radiation-hydrodynamics simulation of a supercritical accretion flow onto a neutron star through a narrow accretion column. We set an accretion column with a cone shape filled with tenuous gas with the density of 10-4 g cm-3 above a neutron star and solve the two-dimensional gas motion and radiative transfer within the column. The side boundaries are set such that radiation can freely escape, but gas cannot. Since the initial gas layer is not in a hydrostatic balance, the column gas falls onto the neutron-star surface, and thereby a shock is generated. As a result, the accretion column is composed of two regions: an upper, nearly free-fall region and a lower settling region, as noted by Basko and Sunyaev (1976, MNRAS, 175, 395). The average accretion rate is very high; dot{M}}˜ 10^{2-3} L_E/c2 (with LE being the Eddington luminosity), and so radiation energy dominates over gas internal energy entirely within the column. Despite the high accretion rate, the radiation flux in the laboratory frame is kept barely below LE/(4πr2) at a distance r in the settling region so that matter can slowly accrete. This adjustment is made possible, since a large amount of photons produced via dissipation of kinetic energy of matter can escape through the side boundaries. The total luminosity can greatly exceed LE by several orders of magnitude, whereas the apparent luminosity observed from the top of the column is much less. Due to such highly anisotropic radiation fields, the observed flux should exhibit periodic variations with the rotation period, provided that the rotation and magnetic axes are misaligned.

  17. AN ACCRETION MODEL FOR THE ANOMALOUS X-RAY PULSAR 4U 0142+61

    SciTech Connect

    Truemper, J. E.; Dennerl, K.; Kylafis, N. D.; Zezas, A.; Ertan, Ue.

    2013-02-10

    We propose that the quiescent emission of anomalous X-ray pulsars/soft gamma-ray repeaters (AXPs/SGRs) is powered by accretion from a fallback disk, requiring magnetic dipole fields in the range 10{sup 12}-10{sup 13} G, and that the luminous hard tails of their X-ray spectra are produced by bulk-motion Comptonization in the radiative shock near the bottom of the accretion column. This radiation escapes as a fan beam, which is partly absorbed by the polar cap photosphere, heating it up to relatively high temperatures. The scattered component and the thermal emission from the polar cap form a polar beam. We test our model on the well-studied AXP 4U 0142+61, whose energy-dependent pulse profiles show double peaks, which we ascribe to the fan and polar beams. The temperature of the photosphere (kT {approx} 0.4 keV) is explained by the heating effect. The scattered part forms a hard component in the polar beam. We suggest that the observed high temperatures of the polar caps of AXPs/SGRs, compared with other young neutron stars, are due to the heating by the fan beam. Using beaming functions for the fan beam and the polar beam and taking gravitational bending into account, we fit the energy-dependent pulse profiles and obtain the inclination angle and the angle between the spin axis and the magnetic dipole axis, as well as the height of the radiative shock above the stellar surface. We do not explain the high-luminosity bursts, which may be produced by the classical magnetar mechanism operating in super-strong multipole fields.

  18. Monitoring Accreting X-ray Pulsars with the GLAST Burst Monitor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson, Colleen A.; Finger, Mark H.; Patel, Sandeep K.; Bhat, P. Narayana; Preece, Robert D.; Meegan, Charles A.

    2007-01-01

    Accreting pulsars are exceptionally good laboratories for probing the detailed physics of accretion onto magnetic stars. While similar accretion flows also occur in other types of astrophysical systems, e.g. magnetic CVs, only neutron stars have a small enough moment of inertia for the accretion of angular momentum to result in measurable changes in spin-frequency in a timescale of days. Long-term monitoring of accreting pulsar spin-frequencies and fluxes was demonstrated with the Burst and Transient Source Experiment (BATSE) on the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory. Here we present sample results from BATSE, discuss measurement techniques appropriate for GBM, and estimate the expected GBM sensitivity.

  19. Monitoring Accreting X-ray Pulsars with the GLAST Burst Monitor

    SciTech Connect

    Wilson-Hodge, Colleen A.; Finger, Mark H.; Patel, Sandeep K.; Bhat, P. Narayana; Preece, Robert D.; Meegan, Charles A.

    2007-07-12

    Accreting pulsars are exceptionally good laboratories for probing the detailed physics of accretion onto magnetic stars. While similar accretion flows also occur in other types of astrophysical systems, e.g. magnetic CVs, only neutron stars have a small enough moment of inertia for the accretion of angular momentum to result in measurable changes in spin-frequency in a timescale of days. Long-term monitoring of accreting pulsar spin-frequencies and fluxes was demonstrated with the Burst and Transient Source Experiment (BATSE) on the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory. Here we present sample results from BATSE, discuss measurement techniques appropriate for GBM, and estimate the expected GBM sensitivity.

  20. Can the Subsonic Accretion Model Explain the Spin Period Distribution of Wind-fed X-Ray Pulsars?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Tao; Shao, Yong; Li, Xiang-Dong

    2016-06-01

    Neutron stars in high-mass X-ray binaries (HMXBs) generally accrete from the wind matter of their massive companion stars. Recently, Shakura et al. suggested a subsonic accretion model for low-luminosity (<4 × 1036 erg s‑1), wind-fed X-ray pulsars. To test the feasibility of this model, we investigate the spin period distribution of wind-fed X-ray pulsars with a supergiant companion star, using a population synthesis method. We find that the modeled distribution of supergiant HMXBs in the spin period–orbital period diagram is consistent with observations, provided that the winds from the donor stars have relatively low terminal velocities (≲1000 km s‑1). The measured wind velocities in several supergiant HMXBs seem to favor this viewpoint. The predicted number ratio of wind-fed X-ray pulsars with persistent X-ray luminosities that are higher and lower than 4 × 1036 erg s‑1 is about 1:10.

  1. NuSTAR DETECTION OF HARD X-RAY PHASE LAGS FROM THE ACCRETING PULSAR GS 0834–430

    SciTech Connect

    Miyasaka, Hiromasa; Harrison, Fiona A.; Fürst, Felix; Bellm, Eric C.; Grefenstette, Brian W.; Madsen, Kristin K.; Walton, Dominic J.; Bachetti, Matteo; Barret, Didier; Boggs, Steven E.; Craig, William W.; Tomsick, John A.; Chakrabarty, Deepto; Chenevez, Jerome; Christensen, Finn E.; Hailey, Charles J.; Natalucci, Lorenzo; Pottschmidt, Katja; Stern, Daniel; Wilms, Jörn; and others

    2013-09-20

    The Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array hard X-ray telescope observed the transient Be/X-ray binary GS 0834–430 during its 2012 outburst—the first active state of this system observed in the past 19 yr. We performed timing and spectral analysis and measured the X-ray spectrum between 3-79 keV with high statistical significance. We find the phase-averaged spectrum to be consistent with that observed in many other magnetized, accreting pulsars. We fail to detect cyclotron resonance scattering features that would allow us to constrain the pulsar's magnetic field in either phase-averaged or phase-resolved spectra. Timing analysis shows a clearly detected pulse period of ∼12.29 s in all energy bands. The pulse profiles show a strong, energy-dependent hard phase lag of up to 0.3 cycles in phase, or about 4 s. Such dramatic energy-dependent lags in the pulse profile have never before been reported in high-mass X-ray binary pulsars. Previously reported lags have been significantly smaller in phase and restricted to low energies (E < 10 keV). We investigate the possible mechanisms that might produce this energy-dependent pulse phase shift. We find the most likely explanation for this effect is a complex beam geometry.

  2. THE QUIESCENT X-RAY PROPERTIES OF THE ACCRETING MILLISECOND X-RAY PULSAR AND ECLIPSING BINARY SWIFT J1749.4-2807

    SciTech Connect

    Degenaar, N.; Patruno, A.; Wijnands, R.

    2012-09-10

    Swift J1749.4-2807 is a transient neutron star low-mass X-ray binary that contains an accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar spinning at 518 Hz. It is the first of its kind that displays X-ray eclipses, which holds significant promise to precisely constrain the mass of the neutron star. We report on a {approx_equal} 105 ks long XMM-Newton observation performed when Swift J1749.4-2807 was in quiescence. We detect the source at a 0.5-10 keV luminosity of {approx_equal}1 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 33}(D/6.7 kpc){sup 2} erg s{sup -1}. The X-ray light curve displays three eclipses that are consistent in orbital phase and duration with the ephemeris derived during outburst. Unlike most quiescent neutron stars, the X-ray spectrum can be adequately described with a simple power law, while a pure-hydrogen atmosphere model does not fit the data. We place an upper limit on the 0.01-100 keV thermal luminosity of the cooling neutron star of {approx}< 2 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 33} erg s{sup -1} and constrain its temperature to be {approx}< 0.1 keV (for an observer at infinity). Timing analysis does not reveal evidence for X-ray pulsations near the known spin frequency of the neutron star or its first overtone with a fractional rms of {approx}< 34% and {approx}< 28%, respectively. We discuss the implications of our findings for dynamical mass measurements, the thermal state of the neutron star, and the origin of the quiescent X-ray emission.

  3. Broad-band spectral analysis of the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar SAX J1748.9-2021

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pintore, F.; Sanna, A.; Di Salvo, T.; Del Santo, M.; Riggio, A.; D'Aì, A.; Burderi, L.; Scarano, F.; Iaria, R.

    2016-04-01

    We analysed a 115-ks XMM-Newton observation and the stacking of 8 d of INTEGRAL observations, taken during the raise of the 2015 outburst of the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar SAX J1748.9-2021. The source showed numerous type-I burst episodes during the XMM-Newton observation, and for this reason we studied separately the persistent and burst epochs. We described the persistent emission with a combination of two soft thermal components, a cold thermal Comptonization component (˜2 keV) and an additional hard X-ray emission described by a power law (Γ ˜ 2.3). The continuum components can be associated with an accretion disc, the neutron star (NS) surface and a thermal Comptonization emission coming out of an optically thick plasma region, while the origin of the high-energy tail is still under debate. In addition, a number of broad (σ = 0.1-0.4 keV) emission features likely associated with reflection processes have been observed in the XMM-Newton data. The estimated 1.0-50 keV unabsorbed luminosity of the source is ˜5 × 1037 erg s-1, about 25 per cent of the Eddington limit assuming a 1.4 M⊙ NS. We suggest that the spectral properties of SAX J1748.9-2021 are consistent with a soft state, differently from many other accreting X-ray millisecond pulsars which are usually found in the hard state. Moreover, none of the observed type-I burst reached the Eddington luminosity. Assuming that the burst ignition and emission are produced above the whole NS surface, we estimate an NS radius of ˜7-8 km, consistent with previous results.

  4. Generation of ultrahigh-energy gamma rays in accreting x ray pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gnedin, Yu. N.; Ikhsanov, N. R.

    1991-01-01

    Relativistic protons producing ultrahigh energy gamma rays as a result of nuclear collisions ought to be generated in close proximity to the surface of a neutron star due to accretion. The main features of the mechanism in question are a high efficiency of conversion of the gravitational energy of the accreting matter into acceleration energy and a high efficiency of the acceleration itself. It is shown that in accretion to a neutron star with a strong magnetic field, a loss cone type distribution of accreting protons is formed, which due to instability effectively generates small scale Alfven and proton cyclotron waves, as well as nonlinear waves (magneto-acoustic and Alfven solitons). The electric field of the moving solitons may accelerate the protons to energies of greater than 10(exp 15) eV. The region of acceleration is not locally isolated, but extends from its surface. New possible sources of ultrahigh energy gamma rays are predicted. They may be binary x ray systems containing neutron stars with magnetic fields of about 10(exp 9) gauss.

  5. NuSTAR Discovery of a Cyclotron Line in the Accreting X-Ray Pulsar IGR J16393-4643

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bodaghee, Arash; Tomsick, John A.; Fornasini, Francesca M.; Krivonos, Roman; Stern, Daniel; Mori, Kaya; Rahoui, Farid; Boggs, Steven E.; Christensen, Finn E.; Craig, William W.; Hailey, Charles J.; Harrison, Fiona A.; Zhang, William W.

    2016-06-01

    The high-mass X-ray binary and accreting X-ray pulsar IGR J16393-4643 was observed by the Nuclear Spectroscope Telescope Array in the 3–79 keV energy band for a net exposure time of 50 ks. We present the results of this observation which enabled the discovery of a cyclotron resonant scattering feature with a centroid energy of {29.3}-1.3+1.1 keV. This allowed us to measure the magnetic field strength of the neutron star for the first time: B = (2.5 ± 0.1) × 1012 G. The known pulsation period is now observed at 904.0 ± 0.1 s. Since 2006, the neutron star has undergone a long-term spin-up trend at a rate of \\dot{P}=-2× {10}-8 s s‑1 (‑0.6 s per year, or a frequency derivative of \\dot{ν }=3× {10}-14 Hz s‑1). In the power density spectrum, a break appears at the pulse frequency which separates the zero slope at low frequency from the steeper slope at high frequency. This addition of angular momentum to the neutron star could be due to the accretion of a quasi-spherical wind, or it could be caused by the transient appearance of a prograde accretion disk that is nearly in corotation with the neutron star whose magnetospheric radius is around 2 × 108 cm.

  6. Discovery of Eclipses from the Accreting Millisecond X-Ray Pulsar Swift J1749.4-2807

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Markwardt, C. B.; Stromhmayer, T. E.

    2010-01-01

    We report the discovery of X-ray eclipses in the recently discovered accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar SWIFT J1749.4-2807. This is the first detection of X-ray eclipses in a system of this type and should enable a precise neutron star mass measurement once the companion star is identified and studied. We present a combined pulse and eclipse timing solution that enables tight constraints on the orbital parameters and inclination and shows that the companion mass is in the range 0.6-0.8 solar mass for a likely range of neutron star masses, and that it is larger than a main-sequence star of the same mass. We observed two individual eclipse egresses and a single ingress. Our timing model shows that the eclipse features are symmetric about the time of 90 longitude from the ascending node, as expected. Our eclipse timing solution gives an eclipse duration (from the mid-points of ingress to egress) of 2172+/-13 s. This represents 6.85% of the 8.82 hr orbital period. This system also presents a potential measurement of "Shapiro" delay due to general relativity; through this technique alone, we set an upper limit to the companion mass of 2.2 Solar mass .

  7. DISCOVERY OF ECLIPSES FROM THE ACCRETING MILLISECOND X-RAY PULSAR SWIFT J1749.4-2807

    SciTech Connect

    Markwardt, C. B.; Strohmayer, T. E.

    2010-07-10

    We report the discovery of X-ray eclipses in the recently discovered accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar SWIFT J1749.4-2807. This is the first detection of X-ray eclipses in a system of this type and should enable a precise neutron star mass measurement once the companion star is identified and studied. We present a combined pulse and eclipse timing solution that enables tight constraints on the orbital parameters and inclination and shows that the companion mass is in the range 0.6-0.8 M{sub sun} for a likely range of neutron star masses, and that it is larger than a main-sequence star of the same mass. We observed two individual eclipse egresses and a single ingress. Our timing model shows that the eclipse features are symmetric about the time of 90{sup 0} longitude from the ascending node, as expected. Our eclipse timing solution gives an eclipse duration (from the mid-points of ingress to egress) of 2172 {+-} 13 s. This represents 6.85% of the 8.82 hr orbital period. This system also presents a potential measurement of 'Shapiro' delay due to general relativity; through this technique alone, we set an upper limit to the companion mass of 2.2 M{sub sun}.

  8. Application of the relativistic precession model to the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar IGR J17511-3057

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stefanov, I. Zh.

    2016-03-01

    The observation of a pair of simultaneous twin kHz QPOs in the power density spectrum of a neutron star or a black hole allows its mass-angular-momentum relation to be constrained. Situations in which the observed simultaneous pairs are more than one allow the different models of the kHz QPOs to be falsified. Discrepancy between the estimates coming from the different pairs would call the used model into question. In the current paper, the relativistic precession model is applied to the twin kHz QPOs that appear in the light curves of three groups of observations of the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar IGR J17511-3057. It was found that the predictions of one of the groups are practically in conflict with the other two. Another interesting result is that the region in which the kHz QPOs have been born is rather broad and extends quite far from the ISCO.

  9. High Mass X-ray Binary Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naik, Sachindra

    2016-07-01

    High Mass X-ray Binaries (HMXBs) are interesting objects that provide a wide range of observational probes to the nature of the two stellar components, accretion process, stellar wind and orbital parameters of the systems. Most of the transient HMXBs are found to Be/X-ray binaries (~67%), consisting of a compact object (neutron star) in orbit around the companion Be star. The orbit of the compact object around the Be star is wide and highly eccentric. Be/X-ray binaries are generally quiescent in X-ray emission. The transient X-ray outbursts seen in these objects are known to be due to interaction between the compact object and the circumstellar disk surrounding the Be star. In the recent years, another class of transient HMXBs have been found which have supergiant companions and show shorter X-ray outbursts. X-ray, infrared and optical observations of these HMXBs provide vital information regarding these systems. The timing and broad-band X-ray spectral properties of a few HMXB pulsars, mainly Be/X-ray binary pulsars during regular X-ray outbursts will be discussed.

  10. X-Ray and Near-infrared Observations of the Obscured Accreting Pulsar IGR J18179-1621

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nowak, M. A.; Paizis, A.; Rodriguez, J.; Chaty, S.; Del Santo, M.; Grinberg, V.; Wilms, J.; Ubertini, P.; Chini, R.

    2012-10-01

    IGR J18179-1621 is an obscured accreting X-ray pulsar discovered by INTEGRAL on 2012 February 29. We report on our 20 ks Chandra-High Energy Transmission Gratings Spectrometer observation of the source performed on 2012 March 17, on two short contemporaneous Swift observations, and on our two near-infrared (Ks , Hn , and Jn ) observations performed on 2012 March 13 and 26. We determine the most accurate X-ray position of IGR J18179-1621, αJ2000 = 18h17m52.s18, δJ2000 = -16°21'31farcs68 (90% uncertainty of 0farcs6). A strong periodic variability at 11.82 s is clearly detected in the Chandra data, confirming the pulsating nature of the source, with the light-curve softening at the pulse peak. The quasi-simultaneous Chandra-Swift spectra of IGR J18179-1621 can be well fit by a heavily absorbed hard power law (N H = 2.2 ± 0.3 × 1023 cm-2 and photon index Γ = 0.4 ± 0.1) with an average absorbed 2-8 keV flux of 1.4 × 10-11 erg cm-2 s-1. At the Chandra-based position, a source is detected in our near-infrared (NIR) maps with Ks = 13.14 ± 0.04 mag, Hn = 16 ± 0.1 mag, and no Jn -band counterpart down to ~18 mag. The NIR source, compatible with 2MASS J18175218-1621316, shows no variability between 2012 March 13 and 26. Searches of the UKIDSS database show similar NIR flux levels at epochs six months prior to and after a 2007 February 11 archival Chandra observation where the source's X-ray flux was at least 87 times fainter. In many ways IGR J18179-1621 is unusual: its combination of a several week long outburst (without evidence of repeated outbursts in the historical record), high absorption column (a large fraction of which is likely local to the system), and 11.82 s period does not fit neatly into existing X-ray binary categories.

  11. X-ray radiation from accreting, magnetized neutron stars

    SciTech Connect

    Pavlov, G.G.

    1984-01-01

    A review is given of recent developments in the theory of emission from a magnetized plasma for accreting neutron star conditions. Some observational data on X-ray pulsars are discussed, and present problems are indicated. 26 references.

  12. The Transient Accreting X-Ray Pulsar XTE J1946+274: Stability of X-Ray Properties at Low Flux and Updated Orbital Solution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marcu-Cheatham, Diana M.; Pottschmidt, Katja; Kühnel, Matthias; Müller, Sebastian; Falkner, Sebastian; Caballero, Isabel; Finger, Mark H.; Jenke, Peter J.; Wilson-Hodge, Colleen A.; Fürst, Felix; Grinberg, Victoria; Hemphill, Paul B.; Kreykenbohm, Ingo; Klochkov, Dmitry; Rothschild, Richard E.; Terada, Yukikatsu; Enoto, Teruaki; Iwakiri, Wataru; Wolff, Michael T.; Becker, Peter A.; Wood, Kent S.; Wilms, Jörn

    2015-12-01

    We present a timing and spectral analysis of the X-ray pulsar XTE J1946+274 observed with Suzaku during an outburst decline in 2010 October and compare with previous results. XTE J1946+274 is a transient X-ray binary consisting of a Be-type star and a neutron star with a 15.75 s pulse period in a 172 days orbit with 2-3 outbursts per orbit during phases of activity. We improve the orbital solution using data from multiple instruments. The X-ray spectrum can be described by an absorbed Fermi-Dirac cut-off power-law model along with a narrow Fe Kα line at 6.4 keV and a weak Cyclotron Resonance Scattering Feature (CRSF) at ˜35 keV. The Suzaku data are consistent with the previously observed continuum flux versus iron line flux correlation expected from fluorescence emission along the line of sight. However, the observed iron line flux is slightly higher, indicating the possibility of a higher iron abundance or the presence of non-uniform material. We argue that the source most likely has only been observed in the subcritical (non-radiation dominated) state since its pulse profile is stable over all observed luminosities and the energy of the CRSF is approximately the same at the highest (˜5 × 1037 erg s-1) and lowest (˜5 × 1036 erg s-1) observed 3-60 keV luminosities.

  13. X-Ray States of Redback Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Linares, M.

    2014-11-01

    Compact binary millisecond pulsars with main-sequence donors, often referred to as "redbacks," constitute the long-sought link between low-mass X-ray binaries and millisecond radio pulsars and offer a unique probe of the interaction between pulsar winds and accretion flows. We present a systematic study of eight nearby redbacks, using more than 100 observations obtained with Swift's X-ray Telescope. We distinguish between three main states: pulsar, disk, and outburst states. We find X-ray mode switching in the disk state of PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270-4859, similar to what was found in the other redback that showed evidence for accretion: rapid, recurrent changes in X-ray luminosity (0.5-10 keV, L X), between (6-9) × 1032 erg s-1 (disk-passive state) and (3-5) × 1033 erg s-1 (disk-active state). This strongly suggests that mode switching—which has not been observed in quiescent low-mass X-ray binaries—is universal among redback millisecond pulsars in the disk state. We briefly explore the implications for accretion disk truncation and find that the inferred magnetospheric radius in the disk state of PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270-4859 lies outside the light cylinder. Finally, we note that all three redbacks that have developed accretion disks have relatively high L X in the pulsar state (>1032 erg s-1).

  14. Positive correlation between the cyclotron line energy and luminosity in sub-critical X-ray pulsars: Doppler effect in the accretion channel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mushtukov, Alexander A.; Tsygankov, Sergey S.; Serber, Alexander V.; Suleimanov, Valery F.; Poutanen, Juri

    2015-12-01

    Cyclotron resonance scattering features observed in the spectra of some X-ray pulsars show significant changes of the line centroid energy with the pulsar luminosity. Whereas for bright sources above the so-called critical luminosity, these variations are established to be connected with the appearance of the high-accretion column above the neutron star surface, at low, sub-critical luminosities the nature of the variations (but with the opposite sign) has not been discussed widely. We argue here that the cyclotron line is formed when the radiation from a hotspot propagates through the plasma falling with a mildly relativistic velocity on to the neutron star surface. The position of the cyclotron resonance is determined by the Doppler effect. The change of the cyclotron line position in the spectrum with luminosity is caused by variations of the velocity profile in the line-forming region affected by the radiation pressure force. The presented model has several characteristic features: (i) the line centroid energy is positively correlated with the luminosity; (ii) the line width is positively correlated with the luminosity as well; (iii) the position and the width of the cyclotron absorption line are variable over the pulse phase; (iv) the line has a more complicated shape than widely used Lorentzian or Gaussian profiles; (v) the phase-resolved cyclotron line centroid energy and the width are negatively and positively correlated with the pulse intensity, respectively. The predictions of the proposed theory are compared with the variations of the cyclotron line parameters in the X-ray pulsar GX 304-1 over a wide range of sub-critical luminosities as seen by the INTEGRAL observatory.

  15. The superslow pulsation X-ray pulsars in high mass X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Wei

    2013-03-01

    There exists a special class of X-ray pulsars that exhibit very slow pulsation of P spin > 1000 s in the high mass X-ray binaries (HMXBs). We have studied the temporal and spectral properties of these superslow pulsation neutron star binaries in hard X-ray bands with INTEGRAL observations. Long-term monitoring observations find spin period evolution of two sources: spin-down trend for 4U 2206+54 (P spin ~ 5560 s with Ṗ spin ~ 4.9 × 10-7 s s-1) and long-term spin-up trend for 2S 0114+65 (P spin ~ 9600 s with Ṗ spin ~ -1 × 10-6 s s-1) in the last 20 years. A Be X-ray transient, SXP 1062 (P spin ~ 1062 s), also showed a fast spin-down rate of Ṗ spin ~ 3 × 10-6 s s-1 during an outburst. These superslow pulsation neutron stars cannot be produced in the standard X-ray binary evolution model unless the neutron star has a much stronger surface magnetic field (B > 1014 G). The physical origin of the superslow spin period is still unclear. The possible origin and evolution channels of the superslow pulsation X-ray pulsars are discussed. Superslow pulsation X-ray pulsars could be younger X-ray binary systems, still in the fast evolution phase preceding the final equilibrium state. Alternatively, they could be a new class of neutron star system - accreting magnetars.

  16. X-ray states of redback millisecond pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Linares, M.

    2014-11-01

    Compact binary millisecond pulsars with main-sequence donors, often referred to as 'redbacks', constitute the long-sought link between low-mass X-ray binaries and millisecond radio pulsars and offer a unique probe of the interaction between pulsar winds and accretion flows. We present a systematic study of eight nearby redbacks, using more than 100 observations obtained with Swift's X-ray Telescope. We distinguish between three main states: pulsar, disk, and outburst states. We find X-ray mode switching in the disk state of PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270-4859, similar to what was found in the other redback that showed evidence for accretion: rapid, recurrent changes in X-ray luminosity (0.5-10 keV, L {sub X}), between (6-9) × 10{sup 32} erg s{sup –1} (disk-passive state) and (3-5) × 10{sup 33} erg s{sup –1} (disk-active state). This strongly suggests that mode switching—which has not been observed in quiescent low-mass X-ray binaries—is universal among redback millisecond pulsars in the disk state. We briefly explore the implications for accretion disk truncation and find that the inferred magnetospheric radius in the disk state of PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270-4859 lies outside the light cylinder. Finally, we note that all three redbacks that have developed accretion disks have relatively high L {sub X} in the pulsar state (>10{sup 32} erg s{sup –1}).

  17. Be/X-Ray Pulsar Binary Science with LOFT

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson-Hodge, Colleen A.

    2011-01-01

    Accretion disks are ubiquitous in astronomical sources. Accretion powered pulsars are a good test bed for accretion disk physics, because unlike for other objects, the spin of the neutron star is directly observable allowing us to see the effects of angular momentum transfer onto the pulsar. The combination of a sensitive wide-field monitor and the large area detector on LOFT will enable new detailed studies of accretion powered pulsars which I will review. RXTE observations have shown an unusually high number of Be/X-ray pulsar binaries in the SMC. Unlike binaries in the Milky Way, these systems are all at the same distance, allowing detailed population studies using the sensitive LOFT WFM, potentially providing connections to star formation episodes. For Galactic accreting pulsar systems, LOFT will allow measurement of spectral variations within individual pulses, mapping the accretion column in detail for the first time. LOFT will also provide better constraints on magnetic fields in accreting pulsars, allowing measurements of cyclotron features, observations of transitions into the centrifugal inhibition regime, and monitoring of spin-up rate vs flux correlations. Coordinated multi-wavelength observations are crucial to extracting the best science from LOFT from these and numerous other objects.

  18. Thermonuclear X-ray bursts from the 401-Hz accreting pulsar IGR J17498-2921: indication of burning in confined regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chakraborty, Manoneeta; Bhattacharyya, Sudip

    2012-05-01

    We use the 2011 Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) Proportional Counter Array (PCA) data of the 401-Hz accreting pulsar and burster IGR J17498-2921 to perform timing analysis and time-resolved spectroscopy of 12 thermonuclear X-ray bursts. We confirm previously reported burst oscillations from this source with a much higher significance (8.8σ). We note that the bursts can be divided into three groups: big photospheric radius expansion (PRE) bursts are about 10 times more luminous than medium bursts, while the latter are about 10 times more luminous than small bursts. The PCA field of view of these observations contains several known bursters, and hence some of the observed bursts might not be from IGR J17498-2921. The oscillations during big bursts at the known pulsar frequency show that these bursts were definitely from IGR J17498-2921. We find that at least several of the other bursts were also likely originated from IGR J17498-2921. Spectral analysis reveals that the luminosity differences among various bursts are primarily due to differences in normalizations, and not temperatures, even when we consider the effects of colour factor. This shows burning on a fraction of the stellar surface for those small and medium bursts, which originated from IGR J17498-2921. The low values of the upper limits of burst oscillation amplitude for these bursts suggest a small angle between the spin axis and the magnetic axis. We find indications of the PRE nature of a medium burst, which likely originated from IGR J17498-2921. If true, then, to the best of our knowledge, this is the first time that two PRE bursts with a peak count rate ratio of as high as ≈12 have been detected from the same source.

  19. Classical Accreting Pulsars with NICER

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson-Hodge, Colleen A.

    2014-01-01

    Soft excesses are very common center dot Lx > 1038 erg/s - reprocessing by optically thick material at the inner edge of the accretion disk center dot Lx < 1036 erg/s - photoionized or collisionally heated diffuse gas or thermal emission from the NS surface center dot Lx 1037 erg/s - either or both types of emission center dot NICER observations of soft excesses in bright X-ray pulsars combined with reflection modeling will constrain the ionization state, metalicity and dynamics of the inner edge of the magnetically truncated accretion disk Reflection models of an accretion disk for a hard power law - Strong soft excess below 3 keV from hot X-ray heated disk - For weakly ionized case: strong recombination lines - Are we seeing changes in the disk ionization in 4U1626-26? 13 years of weekly monitoring with RXTE PCA center dot Revealed an unexpectedly large population of Be/X-ray binaries compared to the Milky Way center dot Plotted luminosities are typical of "normal" outbursts (once per orbit) center dot The SMC provides an excellent opportunity to study a homogenous population of HMXBs with low interstellar absorption for accretion disk studies. Monitoring with NICER will enable studies of accretion disk physics in X-ray pulsars center dot The SMC provides a potential homogeneous low-absorption population for this study center dot NICER monitoring and TOO observations will also provide measurements of spinfrequencies, QPOs, pulsed fluxes, and energy spectra.

  20. NuSTAR discovers a cyclotron line and reveals the spinning up of the accreting X-ray pulsar IGR J16393-4643

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bodaghee, Arash; Tomsick, John; Fornasini, Francesca; Krivonos, Roman; Stern, Daniel; Mori, Kaya; Rahoui, Farid; Boggs, Steven E.; Christensen, Finn; Craig, William W.; Hailey, Charles James; Harrison, Fiona; Zhang, William

    2016-04-01

    After several misclassifications, IGR J16393-4643 is now known to be a high-mass X-ray binary consisting of a heavily-absorbed pulsar that is likely paired with a massive and distant B star. It was observed for 50-ks by NuSTAR in the 3--79 keV energy band, complemented by a contemporaneous 2-ks observation with Swift-XRT. These observations enabled the discovery of a cyclotron resonant scattering feature with a centroid energy of 29.3(+1.1/-1.3) keV. This allowed us to measure the magnetic field strength of the neutron star for the first time: B = (2.5±0.1)×1012 G. The known pulsation period is now observed at 904.0±0.1 s. Since 2006, the neutron star has undergone a long-term spin-up trend at a rate of dP/dt = -2×10-8 s s-1 (-0.6 s per year, or a frequency derivative of dν/dt = 3×10-14 Hz s-1). In the power density spectrum, a break appears at the pulse frequency which separates the zero slope at low frequency from the steeper slope at high frequency. This addition of angular momentum to the neutron star could be due to the accretion of a quasi-spherical wind, or it could be caused by the transient appearance of a prograde accretion disk that is nearly in corotation with the neutron star whose magnetospheric radius is around 2×108 cm.

  1. Period clustering of anomalous X-ray pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bisnovatyi-Kogan, G. S.; Ikhsanov, N. R.

    2015-06-01

    The question of why the observed periods of anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs) and soft gamma-ray repeaters (SGRs) cluster in the range 2-12 s is discussed. The possibility that AXPs and SGRs are the descendants of high-mass X-ray binaries that have disintegrated in core-collapse supernova explosions is investigated. The spin periods of neutron stars in high-mass X-ray binaries evolve towards the equilibrium period, which is a few seconds, on average. After the explosion of its massive companion, the neutron star becomes embedded in a dense gaseous envelope, and accretion from this envelope leads to the formation of a residual magnetically levitating disk. It is shown that the expected mass of the disk in this case is 10-7-10-8 M⊙, which is sufficient to support accretion at the rate 1014-1015 g/s over a few thousand years. During this period, the star manifests itself as an isolated X-ray pulsar with a number of parameters similar to those of AXPs and SGRs. The periods of such pulsars can cluster if the lifetime of the residual disk does not exceed the spin-down timescale of the neutron star.

  2. Stellar X-ray accretion signatures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schneider, C.; Guenther, M.

    2016-06-01

    Accretion is observed in a wide range objects with partially overlapping properties. In this contribution, we study accretion in young stars, where we can directly observe the accretion shock on the stellar surface in the X-ray regime. High-resolution grating spectroscopy allows us to infer the properties of the accretion streams. I will present results from our recent 250 ks XMM-Newton/Chandra program targeting the prototypical T Tau system such as strong X-ray variability despite constant mass accretion, abundances typical for accreting stars, but line ratios typically not found in accreting stars. Finally, I will compare these results with other systems focusing on potentially different accretion modes.

  3. Observations of accreting pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Prince, Thomas A.; Bildsten, Lars; Chakrabarty, Deepto; Wilson, Robert B.; Finger, Mark H.

    1994-01-01

    We discuss recent observations of accreting binary pulsars with the all-sky BATSE instrument on the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory. BATSE has detected and studied nearly half of the known accreting pulsar systems. Continuous timing studies over a two-year period have yielded accurate orbital parameters for 9 of these systems, as well as new insights into long-term accretion torque histories.

  4. A new look at anomalous X-ray Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bisnovatyi-Kogan, G. S.; Ikhsanov, N. R.

    2014-04-01

    We explore the possibility of explaining Anomalous X-ray Pulsars (AXPs) and Soft Gammaray Repeaters (SGRs) in a scenario with fall-back magnetic accretion onto a young isolated neutron star. The X-ray emission of the pulsar in this case originates due to the accretion of matter onto the surface of the neutron star from a magnetic slab surrounding its magnetosphere. The spin-down rate of the neutron star expected in this picture is close to the observed value. We show that such neutron stars are relatively young and are going through the transition from the propeller state to the accretor state. The pulsar's activity in gamma-rays is connected with its relative youth, and is enabled by energy stored in a non-equilibrium layer located in the crust of the low-mass neutron star. This energy can be released due to the mixing of matter in the neutron star crust with super heavy nuclei approaching its surface and becoming unstable. The fission of nuclei in the low-density region initiates chain reactions leading to a nuclear explosion. Outbursts are probably triggered by instability developing in the region where the matter accreted by the neutron star accumulates in the magnetic polar regions.

  5. X-rays from the eclipsing pulsar 1957+20

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fruchter, A. S.; Bookbinder, J.; Garcia, M. R.; Bailyn, C. D.

    1992-01-01

    The detection of soft X-rays of about 1 keV energy from the eclipsing pulsar PSR1957+20 is reported. This high-energy radiation should be a valuable diagnostic of the wind in this recycled pulsar system. Possible sources of the X-ray emission are the interstellar nebula driven by the pulsar wind, the interaction between the pulsar and its evaporating companion, and the pulsar itself. The small apparent size of the X-ray object argues against the first of these possibilities and suggests that the X-rays are produced within the binary.

  6. The X-ray optics for X-ray pulsar navigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jin, Dongdong; Li, Wenbin; Lian, Jian; Shi, Yufeng; Song, Juan; Wang, Wencong; Sun, Shukun

    2016-01-01

    The effective X-ray optics is a key premise for X-ray pulsar detection and navigation. However, it is very difficult to focus the X-ray photons through refraction for the reason that the X-ray photon is very easy to be absorbed by the materials. The most effective ways for the X-ray focusing is reflection. In this paper, we will give a brief introduction of the theory of the grazing incidence and the corresponding optical systems. By comparing the design parameters of main X-ray astronomical telescope in NASA and ESA, we will give the development trend of the X-ray optics for X-ray pulsar navigation and introduce several new technology for the manufacture of the micro-pore optics (MPO).

  7. X-Ray Pulsar Studies With RXTE

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rappaport, Saul

    2004-01-01

    Our activities here at MIT have largely concentrated on four different binary X-ray pulsars: LMC X-4; 4UO352+3O/XPer; 4U0115+63; and X1908+075. We have also recently initiated a search for millisecond X-ray pulsations in RXTE archival data for several bright LMXBs using a new technique. Since this study is just getting under way, we will not report any results here. Using RXTE timing observations of LMC X-4 we have definitively measured, for the first time, the orbital decay of this high-mass X-ray binary. The e-folding decay time scale is very close to lo6 years, comparable to, but somewhat longer than, the corresponding orbital decay times for SMC X-1 and Cen X-3. We find that the orbital decay in LMC X-4 is likely driven by tidal interactions, where the asynchronism between the orbital motion and the rotation of the companion star is maintained by the evolutionary expansion of the companion. Under NASA grant NAGS7479 we carried out RXTE observations of X Per/4U0352+30 in order to track the pulse phase over a one year interval. This effort was successful in tentatively identifying a N 250-day orbital period. However, due to the fact that the observing interval was only somewhat longer than the orbital period, we asked for the observations of X Per to continue as public, or non-proprietary observations. Dr. Jean Swank kindly agreed to the continuation of the observations and they were carried out on a less frequent basis over the next year and a half. After 72 separate observations of X Per, we have the orbital period and semimajor axis firmly determined. In addition, we were able to measure the orbital eccentricity-which turns out to be remarkably small (e = 0.10) for such a wide binary orbit. This has led us establish the birth of a neutron star with a very small (or zero) natal kick.

  8. X-ray emission from two nearby millisecond pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thorsett, S. E.

    1994-01-01

    This grant, titled 'X-Ray Emission from Two Nearby Millisecond Pulsars,' included ROSAT observations of the nearby pulsars PSR J2322+20 and PSR J2019+24. Neither was detected, although the observations were among the most sensitive ever made towards millisecond pulsars, reaching 1.5 x 10(exp 29) and 2.7 x 10(exp 29) erg s(exp -1) (0.1-2.4 keV), respectively. This is about, or slightly below, the predicted level of emission from the Seward and Wang empirical prediction, based on an extrapolation from slower pulsars. To understand the significance of this result, we have compared these limits with observations of four other millisecond pulsars, taken from the ROSAT archives. Except for the case of PSR B1821-21, where we identified a possible x-ray counterpart, only upper limits on x-ray flux were obtained. From these results, we conclude that x-ray emission beaming does not follow the same dependence on pulsar period as that of radio emission: while millisecond pulsars have beaming fractions near unity in the radio, x-ray emission is observed only for favorable viewing geometries.

  9. THERMAL X-RAY EMISSION FROM THE SHOCKED STELLAR WIND OF PULSAR GAMMA-RAY BINARIES

    SciTech Connect

    Zabalza, V.; Paredes, J. M.; Bosch-Ramon, V.

    2011-12-10

    Gamma-ray-loud X-ray binaries are binary systems that show non-thermal broadband emission from radio to gamma rays. If the system comprises a massive star and a young non-accreting pulsar, their winds will collide producing broadband non-thermal emission, most likely originated in the shocked pulsar wind. Thermal X-ray emission is expected from the shocked stellar wind, but until now it has neither been detected nor studied in the context of gamma-ray binaries. We present a semi-analytic model of the thermal X-ray emission from the shocked stellar wind in pulsar gamma-ray binaries, and find that the thermal X-ray emission increases monotonically with the pulsar spin-down luminosity, reaching luminosities of the order of 10{sup 33} erg s{sup -1}. The lack of thermal features in the X-ray spectrum of gamma-ray binaries can then be used to constrain the properties of the pulsar and stellar winds. By fitting the observed X-ray spectra of gamma-ray binaries with a source model composed of an absorbed non-thermal power law and the computed thermal X-ray emission, we are able to derive upper limits on the spin-down luminosity of the putative pulsar. We applied this method to LS 5039, the only gamma-ray binary with a radial, powerful wind, and obtain an upper limit on the pulsar spin-down luminosity of {approx}6 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 36} erg s{sup -1}. Given the energetic constraints from its high-energy gamma-ray emission, a non-thermal to spin-down luminosity ratio very close to unity may be required.

  10. New Energetic Radio Pulsars: An Archival X-Ray Survey

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    This ADP grant was to analyze archival X-ray data obtained in the direction of radio pulsars that were recently discovered as part of the Parkes Multibeam Pulsar Search, which was done using the 64-m Parkes radio telescope in Australia. The survey discovered nearly 700 pulsars, of which roughly three dozen were possible candidates for the detection of X-ray emission. Our team looked at 30 of the most interesting candidates. In most cases, there was insufficient data in the archive to conclude anything. However in several cases, there were interesting archival observations. In three cases, a detailed analysis proved scientifically interesting, and two publications have resulted.

  11. Accreting Millisecond Pulsars: Neutron Star Masses and Radii

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strohmayer, Tod

    2004-01-01

    High amplitude X-ray brightness oscillations during thermonuclear X-ray bursts were discovered with the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) in early 1996. Spectral and timing evidence strongly supports the conclusion that these oscillations are caused by rotational modulation of the burst emission and that they reveal the spin frequency of neutron stars in low mass X-ray binaries. The recent discovery of X-ray burst oscillations from two accreting millisecond pulsars has confirmed this basic picture and provided a new route to measuring neutron star properties and constraining the dense matter equation of state. I will briefly summarize the current observational understanding of accreting millisecond pulsars, and describe recent attempts to determine the mass and radius of the neutron star in XTE J1814-338.

  12. X-RAY EVOLUTION OF PULSAR WIND NEBULAE

    SciTech Connect

    Bamba, Aya; Anada, Takayasu; Dotani, Tadayasu; Ebisawa, Ken; Yamazaki, Ryo; Vink, Jacco

    2010-08-20

    During the search for counterparts of very high energy gamma-ray sources, we serendipitously discovered large, extended, low surface brightness emission from pulsar wind nebulae (PWNe) around pulsars with the ages up to {approx}100 kyr, a discovery made possible by the low and stable background of the Suzaku X-ray satellite. A systematic study of a sample of eight of these PWNe, together with Chandra data sets, has revealed that the nebulae keep expanding up to {approx}100 kyr, although the timescale of the synchrotron X-ray emission is only {approx}60 yr for typical magnetic fields of 100 {mu}G. Our result suggests that the accelerated electrons up to {approx}80 TeV can escape from the PWNe without losing most energies. Moreover, in order to explain the observed correlation between the X-ray size and the pulsar spin-down age, the magnetic field strength in the PWNe must decrease with time.

  13. X-ray Pulsar Navigation Algorithms and Testbed for SEXTANT

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Winternitz, Luke M. B.; Hasouneh, Monther A.; Mitchell, Jason W.; Valdez, Jennifer E.; Price, Samuel R.; Semper, Sean R.; Yu, Wayne H.; Ray, Paul S.; Wood, Kent S.; Arzoumanian, Zaven; Grendreau, Keith C.

    2015-01-01

    The Station Explorer for X-ray Timing and Navigation Technology (SEXTANT) is a NASA funded technologydemonstration. SEXTANT will, for the first time, demonstrate real-time, on-board X-ray Pulsar-based Navigation (XNAV), a significant milestone in the quest to establish a GPS-like navigation capability available throughout our Solar System and beyond. This paper describes the basic design of the SEXTANT system with a focus on core models and algorithms, and the design and continued development of the GSFC X-ray Navigation Laboratory Testbed (GXLT) with its dynamic pulsar emulation capability. We also present early results from GXLT modeling of the combined NICER X-ray timing instrument hardware and SEXTANT flight software algorithms.

  14. X-ray observations of black widow pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Gentile, P. A.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Roberts, M. S. E.; Camilo, F.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Kerr, M.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Stairs, I. H.

    2014-03-10

    We describe the first X-ray observations of five short orbital period (P{sub B} < 1 day), γ-ray emitting, binary millisecond pulsars (MSPs). Four of these—PSRs J0023+0923, J1124–3653, J1810+1744, and J2256–1024—are 'black-widow' pulsars, with degenerate companions of mass <<0.1 M {sub ☉}, three of which exhibit radio eclipses. The fifth source, PSR J2215+5135, is an eclipsing 'redback' with a near Roche-lobe filling ∼0.2 solar mass non-degenerate companion. Data were taken using the Chandra X-Ray Observatory and covered a full binary orbit for each pulsar. Two pulsars, PSRs J2215+5135 and J2256–1024, show significant orbital variability while PSR J1124–3653 shows marginal orbital variability. The lightcurves for these three pulsars have X-ray flux minima coinciding with the phases of the radio eclipses. This phenomenon is consistent with an intrabinary shock emission interpretation for the X-rays. The other two pulsars, PSRs J0023+0923 and J1810+1744, are fainter and do not demonstrate variability at a level we can detect in these data. All five spectra are fit with three separate models: a power-law model, a blackbody model, and a combined model with both power-law and blackbody components. The preferred spectral fits yield power-law indices that range from 1.3 to 3.2 and blackbody temperatures in the hundreds of eV. The spectrum for PSR J2215+5135 shows a significant hard X-ray component, with a large number of counts above 2 keV, which is additional evidence for the presence of intrabinary shock emission. This is similar to what has been detected in the low-mass X-ray binary to MSP transition object PSR J1023+0038.

  15. On the magnetic fields of Be/X-ray pulsars in the Small Magellanic Cloud

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ikhsanov, N. R.; Mereghetti, S.

    2015-12-01

    We explore the possibility of explaining the properties of the Be/X-ray pulsars observed in the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC) within the magnetic levitation accretion scenario. This implies that their X-ray emission is powered by a wind-fed accretion on to a neutron star (NS) which captures matter from a magnetized stellar wind. The NS in this case is accreting matter from a non-Keplerian magnetically levitating disc which is surrounding its magnetosphere. This allows us to explain the observed periods of the pulsars in terms of spin equilibrium without the need of invoking dipole magnetic fields outside the usual range ˜1011-1013 G inferred from cyclotron features of Galactic high-mass X-ray binaries. We find that the equilibrium period of a NS, under certain conditions, depends strongly on the magnetization of the stellar wind of its massive companion and, correspondingly, on the magnetic field of the massive companion itself. This may help to explain why similar NSs in binaries with similar properties rotate with different periods yielding a large scatter of periods of the accretion-powered pulsar observed in SMC and our galaxy.

  16. Polarized X-rays from accreting neutron stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhattacharya, Dipankar

    2016-07-01

    Accreting neutron stars span a wide range in X-ray luminosity and magnetic field strength. Accretion may be wind-fed or disk-fed, and the dominant X-ray flux may originate in the disk or a magnetically confined accretion column. In all such systems X-ray polarization may arise due to Compton or Magneto-Compton scattering, and on some occasions polarization of non-thermal emission from jet-like ejection may also be detectable. Spectral and temporal behaviour of the polarized X-rays would carry information regarding the radiation process, as well as of the matter dynamics - and can assist the detection of effects such as the Lense-Thirring precession. This talk will review our current knowledge of the expected X-ray polarization from accreting neutron stars and explore the prospects of detection with upcoming polarimetry missions.

  17. X-ray observations of Fermi LAT gamma-ray pulsars and pulsar candidates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saz Parkinson, P.; Belfiore, A.; Caraveo, P.; De Luca, A.; Marelli, M.

    2014-07-01

    Since the launch of Fermi, in 2008, the population of known gamma-ray pulsars has exploded from just a handful, to over 150. X-ray observations have been crucial in both the discovery and the understanding of this new pulsar population. I will discuss our ongoing program of XMM, Chandra, and Swift observations of Fermi-LAT pulsars and pulsar candidates and present some of the latest results we have obtained.

  18. Profile bias' influence in x-ray pulsar based navigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Dapeng; Zheng, Wei; Wang, Yidi; Zhang, Lu

    2016-01-01

    X-ray pulsar-based navigation is a novel autonomous navigation method. The pulsar is a kind of neutron star rotating with high speed. Its angle position is stationary in space and its rotation period is extremely stable. In space, the signal with extremely stable period could be detected. Its long-term stability is higher than the atomic clock in state-of-the-art. Therefore, the signal of the pulsars in X-ray waveband could be used for the autonomous navigation of the spacecrafts. The signal's profile is a necessary parameter to estimate the navigation information. In this paper, the impact on the navigation precision caused by the flux bias of the signal's profile is analyzed. The impact is not severely proved in theory and simulation.

  19. Accretion Disk Dynamics in X-Ray Binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schulz, Norbert S.; Ji, Li; Nowak, M.; Canizares, C. R.; Kallman, T.

    2009-09-01

    The last decade of X-ray observations was an era of true discovery in the study of accretion phenomena in X-ray binaries. With the launch of high resolution X-ray spectrometers on board the Chandra X-ray Observatory and XMM Newton we gained novel insights in feedback processes in accretion disks. At the forefront are dynamics in winds and outflows. Recent observations now also not only reveal properties of accretion disk coronal phenomena but point us to highly variable activity in their appearance. Amongst others these include heating along the spectral branches in the Z-source Cyg X-2, short and longterm variations in the photo-ionized emissions in Cir X-1, highly variable and dynamic Ne edges in the ultra-compact binary 4U 0614+091. This presentation summarizes these recent developments and provides an outlook towards more dynamical accretion disk coronal models and perspectives for future missions.

  20. BOOK REVIEW: Rotation and Accretion Powered Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaspi, V. M.

    2008-03-01

    Pulsar astrophysics has come a long way in the 40 years since the discovery of the first pulsar by Bell and Hewish. From humble beginnings as bits of 'scruff' on the Cambridge University group's chart recorder paper, the field of pulsars has blossomed into a major area of mainstream astrophysics, with an unparalleled diversity of astrophysical applications. These range from Nobel-celebrated testing of general relativity in the strong-field regime to constraining the equation-of-state of ultradense matter; from probing the winds of massive stars to globular cluster evolution. Previous notable books on the subject of pulsars have tended to focus on some particular topic in the field. The classic text Pulsars by Manchester and Taylor (1977 San Francisco, CA: Freeman) targeted almost exclusively rotation-powered radio pulsars, while the Mészáros book High-Energy Radiation from Magnetized Neutron Stars (1992 Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press) considered both rotation- and accretion-powered neutron stars, but focused on their radiation at x-ray energies and above. The recent book Neutron Stars 1 by Haensel et al (2007 Berlin: Springer) considers only the equation of state and neutron-star structure. Into this context appears Rotation and Accretion Powered Pulsars, by Pranab Ghosh. In contrast to other books, here the author takes an encyclopedic approach and attempts to synthesize practically all of the major aspects of the two main types of neutron star. This is ambitious. The only comparable undertaking is the useful but more elementary Lyne and Graham-Smith text Pulsar Astronomy (1998 Cambridge: Cambridge University Press), or Compact Stellar X-ray Sources (eds Lewin and van der Klis, 2006 Cambridge: Cambridge University Press), an anthology of technical review articles that also includes black hole topics. Rotation and Accretion Powered Pulsars thus fills a clear void in the field, providing a readable, graduate-level book that covers nearly everything you

  1. New micro pore optics for x-ray pulsar navigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jin, Ge; Zhang, Qindong; Xu, Zhao; Zhang, Zhengjun; Zhang, Zhiyong; Xu, Wei; Li, Jingwen; Wang, Jian

    2016-01-01

    Solutions of focusing pulsars X-ray is a key factor in improving the accuracy of pulsar navigation. Based on the focusing principle of lobster eye grazing incidence, new micro pore optics (MPO) for pulsar navigation which is glass-substrated X-ray MPO is researched and developed. The effective areas on MPO when single grazing incidence or double grazing incidence happens are analyzed in detail and the first generation of MPO is produced. By illumination of parallel X-ray beam with 1.49keV and 8.05keV on the MPO, it is found that the crossing focusing image can be clearly visible, and the arm of cross image of 1.49keV and 8.05keV are is respectively 30mm and 17mm in length. Moreover, the center intensity was significantly higher than the cross arm which is consistent with theoretical calculation. Besides, the angular resolution of first generation of MPO with 8.05keV parallel X-ray beam illuminated is 4.19'.

  2. Synchrotron X-ray emission from old pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kisaka, Shota; Tanaka, Shuta J.

    2014-09-01

    We study the synchrotron radiation as the observed non-thermal emission by the X-ray satellites from old pulsars (≳1-10 Myr) to investigate the particle acceleration in their magnetospheres. We assume that the power-law component of the observed X-ray spectra is caused by the synchrotron radiation from electrons and positrons in the magnetosphere. We consider two pair-production mechanisms of X-ray emitting particles, the magnetic and the photon-photon pair productions. High-energy photons, which ignite the pair production, are emitted via the curvature radiation of the accelerated particles. We use the analytical description for the radiative transfer and estimate the luminosity of the synchrotron radiation. We find that for pulsars with the spin-down luminosity Lsd ≲ 1033 erg s-1, the locations of the particle acceleration and the non-thermal X-ray emission are within ≲107 cm from the centre of the neutron star, where the magnetic pair production occurs. For pulsars with the spin-down luminosity Lsd ≲ 1031 erg s-1 such as J0108-1431, the synchrotron radiation is difficult to explain the observed non-thermal component even if we consider the existence of the strong and small-scale surface magnetic field structures.

  3. Torque Reversals in Disk Accreting Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Jianke; Wickramasinghe, Dayal T.

    1998-07-01

    X-ray binaries in which the accreting component is a neutron star commonly exhibit significant changes in their spin. In the system Cen X-3, a disk accreting binary system, the pulsar was observed to spin up at a rate ḟ = 8 × 10-13 Hz s-1 when averaged over the past twenty years, but significant fluctuations were observed above this mean. Recent BASTE observations have disclosed that these fluctuations are much larger than previously noted, and appeared to be a system characteristic. The change in the spin state from spin-up to spin-down or vice-versa occurs on a time scale that is much shorter than the instrument can resolve (≤1 d), but appears always to be a similar amplitude, and to occur stochastically. These observations have posed a problem for the conventional torque-mass accretion relation for accreting pulsars, because in this model the spin rate is closely related to the accretion rate, and the latter needs to be finely tuned and to change abruptly to explain the observations. Here we review recent work in this direction and present a coherent picture that explains these observations. We also draw attention to some outstanding problems for future studies.

  4. Models for X-Ray Emission from Isolated Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, F. Y.-H.; Ruderman, M.; Halpern, Jules P.; Zhu, T.; Oliversen, Ronald (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    A model is proposed for the observed combination of power-law and thermal X-rays from rotationally powered pulsars. For gamma-ray pulsars with accelerators very many stellar radii above the neutron star surface, 100 MeV curvature gamma-rays from e(-) or e(+) flowing starward out of such accelerators are converted to e1 pairs on closed field lines all around the star. These pairs strongly affect X-ray emission from near the star in two ways. (1) The pairs are a source of synchrotron emission immediately following their creation in regions where B approx. 10(exp 10) G. This emission, in the photon energy range 0.1 keV less than E(sub X) less than 5 MeV, has a power-law spectrum with energy index 0.5 and X-ray luminosity that depends on the back-flow current, and is typically approx. 10(exp 33) ergs/ s. (2) The pairs ultimately a cyclotron resonance "blanket" surrounding the star except for two holes along the open field line bundles which pass through it. In such a blanket the gravitational pull on e(+,-) pairs toward the star is balanced by the hugely amplified push of outflowing surface emitted X-rays wherever cyclotron resonance occurs. Because of it the neutron star is surrounded by a leaky "hohlraum" of hot blackbody radiation with two small holes, which prevents direct X-ray observation of a heated polar cap of a gamma-ray pulsar. Weakly spin modulated radiation from the blanket together with more strongly spin-modulated radiation from the holes through it would then dominate observed low energy (0.1-10 keV) emission. For non-y-ray pulsars, in which no such accelerators with their accompanying extreme relativistic back-flow toward the star are expected, optically thick e1 resonance blankets should not form (except in special cases very close to the open field line bundle). From such pulsars blackbody radiation from both the warm stellar surface and the heated polar caps should be directly observable. In these pulsars, details of the surface magnetic field

  5. A scenario of the formation of isolated X-ray pulsars with anomalously long period

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ikhsanov, N. R.; Kim, V. Yu.; Beskrovnaya, N. G.

    2015-01-01

    A scenario of the formation of isolated X-ray pulsars is discussed with an application to one of the best studied objects of this class 1E 161348-5055. This moderately luminous, 1033-1035 erg s-1, pulsar with a relatively soft spectrum, kT ˜ 0.6-0.8 keV, is associated with an isolated neutron star, which is located near the center of the young (˜2000 yr) compact supernova remnant RCW 103 and rotates steadily ( Hz s-1) with the period of 6.7 h. We show that in the current epoch the neutron star is in the accretor state. The parameters of the source emission can be explained in terms of the magnetic-levitation accretion scenario in which the star with the surface magnetic field of 1012 G accretes material onto its surface from a non-Keplerian magnetic fossil disk at the rate 1014 g s-1. A neutron star could evolve to this state in a High-Mass X-ray Binary (HMXB), which had disintegrated during the supernova explosion powered by the core-collapse of its massive component. The life-time of an isolated X-ray pulsar formed this way can be as long as a few thousand years.

  6. Heating Before Eating: X-Ray Observations of Redback Millisecond Pulsar Systems in the Ablation State

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roberts, Mallory; McLaughlin, Maura; Ray, Paul S.; Ransom, Scott M.; Hessels, Jason

    2015-01-01

    Redbacks are eclipsing millisecond radio pulsars in close orbits around companions which are non-degenerate and nearly Roche-lobe filling. Several have been observed to transition between a state where the radio pulsar is visible and there is X-ray emission from a shock between the pulsar wind and the ablated material off of the companion, and a state where there appears to be an accretion disk and the radio pulsations are not visible. Here we present X-Ray studies of two recently discovered systems. A Chandra observation of PSR J1628-3205 over its entire 5 hour orbit with Chandra shows little evidence for X-Ray variability. An XMM-Newton observation of PSR J2129-0429 over its 15.2 hour orbit shows strong orbital variability with an intriguing two peaked light curve. We compare these systems' X-Ray properties to other redbacks and comment on the differences between their properities and those of black widows.

  7. Energy-dependent effects of scattering atmospheres on X-ray pulsar pulse profiles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sturner, Steven J.; Dermer, Charles D.

    1994-01-01

    We propose that radiation-supported scattering atmospheres near accreting X-ray pulsars (XRPs) can explain energy-dependent features observed in the pulse profiles of 4U 1626-67, 4U 1538-52, 4U 1907+09 and Vela X-1. These atmospheres provide a physical model for the phenomenological annular emitting regions employed by Leahy to fit X-ray pulsar pulse profiles. We examine the effects of the scattering atmospheres under the assumptions that stable, optically thick atmospheres exist in a region where the optically thin resonant radiation force exceeds the force of gravity on ionized hydrogen. We predict that less complex pulse profiles will be observed at higher photon energies because the scattering atmospheres, which are supported by resonant Compton radiation pressure, become transparent to photons with energies greater than the cyclotron energy at the neutron star surface.

  8. Observations of x ray pulsars from the Kvant module

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gilfanov, M.; Sunyaev, Rashid A.; Churazov, E.; Loznikov, V.; Efremov, V. V.; Kaniovskiy, A.; Kuznetsov, A. V.; Yamburenko, N.; Melioranskiy, A.; Skinner, G. K.

    1991-01-01

    The Roentgen international x ray observatory on the Kvant module of the Mir space station has been successfully operating since the beginning of June 1987. Many x ray sources were observed and among them were several x ray pulsars. Four telescopes mounted on board the Kvant module cover a wide energy range with good timing resolution. Timing analysis of the Kvant module data suffers from the presence of only short continuous intervals of source observations, separated by 90 min gaps (90 min is the orbital period of the Mir space station around the Earth). The presence of 90 min gaps leads to the appearance of beat frequencies v=v sub 0 + or - n/90 min (n = 1, 2, 3). Special analysis was applied to avoid this difficulty. Results are presented of the pulsation period measurements of the x ray pulsars Her X-1, Cen X-3, SMC X-1, Vela X-1, A0535 + 26 by the instruments on board the Kvant module in 1987 to 1989. The values of the periods are reduced to the solar system barycenter and to the binary system barycenter (excluding A0535 + 26).

  9. The soft X-ray spectrum of transient pulsars in the Small Magellanic Cloud

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    La Palombara, N.; Sidoli, L.; Esposito, P.; Pintore, F.; Tiengo, A.; Mereghetti, S.

    2016-06-01

    The Small Magellanic Cloud is characterized by a high number of transient accreting pulsars, which can reach luminosities up to 10^{38} erg s^{-1} during their outbursts. Due to the low Galactic interstellar absorption in the SMC direction, these sources offer a unique opportunity to investigate the soft end of the X-ray spectrum in accreting pulsars. In the last two years we observed with XMM-Newton the large outburst of two of these transient pulsars (RX J0059.2-7138 and SMC X-2). Thanks to the high throughput and spectral resolution of XMM, these observations allowed us to investigate at an unprecedented level of detail their spectral and timing properties at soft X-ray energies. We found that both sources show a pulsed emission also at low energies, and that they are characterized by a thermal component which dominates the source spectrum below 0.5 keV; moreover, we discovered several emission and absorption features, which are very likely produced by photoionization of plasma located above the inner regions of the accretion disc.

  10. EXTINCTION AND DISTANCE TO ANOMALOUS X-RAY PULSARS FROM X-RAY SCATTERING HALOS

    SciTech Connect

    Rivera-Ingraham, A.; Van Kerkwijk, M. H. E-mail: mhvk@astro.utoronto.c

    2010-02-10

    We analyze the X-ray scattering halos around three Galactic Anomalous X-ray Pulsars in order to constrain the distance and the optical extinction of each source. We obtain surface brightness distributions from EPIC-pn data obtained with XMM-Newton, compare the profiles of different sources, and fit them with a model based on the standard theory of X-ray scattering by dust grains, both for a uniform distribution of dust along the line of sight, and for dust distributions constrained by previous measurements. Somewhat surprisingly, we find that for all three sources, the uniform distribution reproduces the observed surface brightness as well as or better than the distributions that are informed by previous constraints. Nevertheless, the inferred total dust columns are robust, and serve to confirm that previous measurements based on interstellar edges in high-resolution X-ray spectra and on modeling of broadband X-ray spectra were reliable. Specifically, we find A{sub V} {approx_equal} 4, 6, and 8 mag for 4U 0142+61, 1E 1048.1 - 5937, and 1RXS J170849.0 - 400910, respectively. For 1E 1048.1 - 5937, this is well in excess of the extinction expected toward an H I bubble along the line of sight, thus casting further doubt on the suggested association with the source.

  11. Anomalous X-ray Pulsars and Soft Gamma Repeaters as Magnetars: The RXTE Legacy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaspi, Victoria M.

    2012-01-01

    Prior to the launch of RXTE, the hypothesis by Thompson and Duncan that there exists a class of ultra-highly magnetized young neutron stars whose emission is powered by the decay of their magnetic field -- the so-called `magnetar' model -- was beautiful, yet unproven. The magnetar model was motivated the existence of Soft Gamma Repeaters (SGRs), which had been observed to exhibit dramatic X-ray and soft gamma ray bursts and in one case, 8-s pulsations in the tail of a major flare. Meanwhile, there was recognized another puzzling group of seemingly very different objects, the 'Anomalous X-ray Pulsars' (AXPs), so-called due to their bright, several-second X-ray pulsations, steady spin down, low spin-down power and absence of any binary companion from which mass could be accreted. AXPs had also been suggested to be magnetars by Thompson and Duncan, though this too was unproven. Today, thanks to multiple landmark RXTE results, these two groups of object have been united into a single source class, which is now nearly universally identified with magnetars. Specifically, the discovery from SGRs of regular X-ray pulsations and steady spin-down (as had been observed in AXPs), as well as the discovery of bright X-ray bursts from AXPs (as had been observed in SGRs) has demonstrated unambiguously the common nature of AXPs and SGRs, as was predicted uniquely in the magnetar model. Moreover, RXTE discoveries of several observational links between AXPs, SGRs and rotation-powered pulsars, specifically the detection of spin-up glitches in AXPs, as well as the observation of a temporary metamorphosis of one rotation-powered pulsar into a magnetar-like source, hint at a broader unification of the magnetars with the general radio pulsar population, with the observational differences attributable to a combination of age and magnetic field.

  12. Exploring the Time Evolution of Luminosity and Pulse Profile in X-Ray Pulsars.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laycock, Silas; Christodoulou, Dimitris; Cappallo, Rigel; Ho, Wynn; Coe, Malcolm; Corbet, Robin; Klus, Helen; Kazanas, Demosthenes; Galache, Jose Luis; Fingerman, Samuel; Yang, Jun; Norton, Scott

    2015-01-01

    We report progress in our effort to analyze and model the large collection of observations made by RXTE, XMM-Newton and Chandra of X-ray Binary Pulsars in the Magellanic Clouds. There are >2000 individual RXTE PCA, and > 200 XMM-Newton and Chandra observations of the Magellanic clouds. Each observation covers a large fraction of the whole SMC (or LMC) population, and we are able to deconvolve the often simultaneous signals to create a 20 year record of individual pulsar's activity. Together, these datasets cover the entire range of variability timescales and accretion regimes in High Mass X-ray Binaries. We are compiling a library of energy-resolved pulse profiles covering the entire luminosity and spin-period parameter space. In parallel we are developing a suite of computational models to parameterize the pulse profile morphology. We begin with a pair of isotropically emitting poles with general relativity, and then add complexity in the form of fan and pencil beam components. The initial goal is to discover the ratio of the beam components as a function of accretion rate and luminosity, and ultimately the distribution of offsets between magnetic and spin axes. These products are needed for the next generation of advances in neutron star theory and modeling. This unique dataset enables us to determine the upper and lower limits of accretion powered luminosity in a large statistically complete sample of neutron stars, and hence make several direct tests of fundamental NS parameters and accretion physics.

  13. Optical pulsations from the anomalous X-ray pulsar 4U0142+61.

    PubMed

    Kern, B; Martin, C

    2002-05-30

    Anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs) differ from ordinary radio pulsars in that their X-ray luminosity is orders of magnitude greater than their rate of rotational energy loss, and so they require an additional energy source. One possibility is that AXPs are highly magnetized neuron stars or 'magnetars' having surface magnetic fields greater than 10(14) G. This would make them similar to the soft gamma-ray repeaters (SGRs), but alternative models that do not require extreme magnetic fields also exist. An optical counterpart to the AXP 4U0142+61 was recently discovered, consistent with emission from a magnetar, but also from a magnetized hot white dwarf, or an accreting isolated neutron star. Here we report the detection of optical pulsations from 4U0142+61. The pulsed fraction of optical light (27 per cent) is five to ten times greater than that of soft X-rays, from which we conclude that 4U0142+61 is a magnetar. Although this establishes a direct relationship between AXPs and the soft gamma-ray repeaters, the evolutionary connection between AXPs, SGRs and radio pulsars remains controversial. PMID:12037561

  14. A REFLECTION MODEL FOR THE CYCLOTRON LINES IN THE SPECTRA OF X-RAY PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Poutanen, Juri; Mushtukov, Alexander A.; Tsygankov, Sergey S.; Nagirner, Dmitrij I.; Suleimanov, Valery F.; Doroshenko, Victor; Lutovinov, Alexander A.

    2013-11-10

    Cyclotron resonance scattering features observed in the spectra of some X-ray pulsars show significant changes of the line energy with the pulsar luminosity. At high luminosities, these variations are often associated with the onset and growth of the accretion column, which is believed to be the origin of the observed emission and of the cyclotron lines. However, this scenario inevitably implies a large gradient of the magnetic field strength within the line-forming region, which makes the formation of the observed line-like features problematic. Moreover, the observed variation of the cyclotron line energy is much smaller than could be anticipated for the corresponding luminosity changes. We argue here that a more physically realistic situation is that the cyclotron line forms when the radiation emitted by the accretion column is reflected from the neutron star surface, where the gradient of the magnetic field strength is significantly smaller. Here we develop a reflection model and apply it to explain the observed variations of the cyclotron line energy in a bright X-ray pulsar V 0332+53 over a wide range of luminosities.

  15. Accretion disk dynamics in X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peris, Charith Srian

    Accreting X-ray binaries consist of a normal star which orbits a compact object with the former transferring matter onto the later via an accretion disk. These accretion disks emit radiation across the entire electromagnetic spectrum. This thesis exploits two regions of the spectrum, exploring the (1) inner disk regions of an accreting black hole binary, GRS1915+105, using X-ray spectral analysis and (2) the outer accretion disks of a set of neutron star and black hole binaries using Doppler Tomography applied on optical observations. X-ray spectral analysis of black hole binary GRS1915+105: GRS1915+105 stands out as an exceptional black hole primarily due to the wild variability exhibited by about half of its X-ray observations. This study focused on the steady X-ray observations of the source, which were found to exhibit significant curvature in the harder coronal component within the RXTE/PCA band-pass. The roughly constant inner-disk radius seen in a majority of the steady-soft observations is strongly reminiscent of canonical soft state black-hole binaries. Remarkably, the steady-hard observations show the presence of growing truncation in the inner-disk. A majority of the steady observations of GRS1915+105 map to the states observed in canonical black hole binaries which suggests that within the complexity of this source is a simpler underlying basis of states. Optical tomography of X-ray binary systems: Doppler tomography was applied to the strong line features present in the optical spectra of X-ray binaries in order to determine the geometric structure of the systems' emitting regions. The point where the accretion stream hits the disk, also referred to as the "hotspot'', is clearly identified in the neutron star system V691 CrA and the black hole system Nova Muscae 1991. Evidence for stream-disk overflows exist in both systems, consistent with relatively high accretion rates. In contrast, V926 Sco does not show evidence for the presence of a hotspot which

  16. X-ray flares from postmerger millisecond pulsars.

    PubMed

    Dai, Z G; Wang, X Y; Wu, X F; Zhang, B

    2006-02-24

    Recent observations support the suggestion that short-duration gamma-ray bursts are produced by compact star mergers. The x-ray flares discovered in two short gamma-ray bursts last much longer than the previously proposed postmerger energy-release time scales. Here, we show that they can be produced by differentially rotating, millisecond pulsars after the mergers of binary neutron stars. The differential rotation leads to windup of interior poloidal magnetic fields and the resulting toroidal fields are strong enough to float up and break through the stellar surface. Magnetic reconnection-driven explosive events then occur, leading to multiple x-ray flares minutes after the original gamma-ray burst. PMID:16497927

  17. X-ray properties of accreting black holes

    SciTech Connect

    White, N.E.

    1984-01-01

    The X-ray signatures of Cyg X-1 and IMC X-3 have been taken as templates of binary systems which include a black hole component. Cyg X-1 exhibits rapid flickering on a time scale varying from 0.001-1 sec and bimodal spectral behavior in its X-ray emissions. Similar emissions from IMC X-3 have been detected, along with an absence of X-ray eclipses. Taking three characteristics, i.e., flickering, bimodal spectra and the estimated masses of the X ray components, of assumed black hole companions for Cyg X-1 and IMC X-3, an estimate is made of the number of black holes a whole sky survey would reveal, based on data from the HEAO-1 and Einstein Observatory satellites. Cin X-1, BX 339-4 and LMC X-1 are concluded to probably be accreting black holes. Eleven other objects are identified as possible candidates, as are active galactic nuclei.

  18. Soft x ray properties of the Geminga pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, J. P.; Ruderman, M.

    1993-01-01

    The ROSAT soft x ray spectrum and pulse profile of the Geminga pulsar are analyzed and interpreted in terms of thermal emission from the surface of the neutron star. The x ray spectrum appears to consist of two blackbody components with T(sub 1) = (5.2 +/- 1.0) x 10 (exp 5) K and T(sub 2) approximately 3 x 10(exp 6) K, respectively. The inferred ratio of surface areas, A(sub 2)/A(sub 1), is approximately 3 x 10(exp -5). Both components are highly modulated at the pulsar rotation period, but the harder x ray pulse is narrower, and leads the main (soft) x ray pulse by about 105 deg of phase. The soft x ray component is interpreted as photospheric cooling of much of the neutron star's surface area, while the small, hot region could be part of the much smaller polar cap heated by energetic particles flowing inward from the magnetospheric accelerator which is responsible for the production of Geminga's gamma rays. Geminga's gamma ray emission is consistent with outer-magnetosphere accelerator models for highly inclined dipoles. These predict the beaming of energetic gamma rays close enough to the star to give copious e(+/-) production in the stellar magnetic field and a large circumstellar pair density from pair inflow toward the surface. These pairs may quench radio emission, and also reflect most of the hard polar cap x rays back to the stellar surface by cyclotron resonance scattering. They are then reemitted from that much larger area at the lower temperature T(sub 1). The single-peaked nature of the x ray pulse and its energy-dependent phase suggest an off-center dipole geometry for the surface magnetic field. Under the assumption that the soft x ray emission comes from the full surface of a neutron star of radius R = 10 km, a distance estimate of (150-400) pc is derived. This range is consistent with the fit interstellar column density of (1.5 +/- 0.5) x 10(exp 20) cm(exp -2). Distances less than 150 pc are probably ruled out both by the lower limit on the column

  19. X-Ray Spectroscopy of Accretion Shocks in Young Stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brickhouse, Nancy S.

    2011-01-01

    High resolution X-ray spectroscopy of accreting young stars is providing new insights into the physical conditions of the shocked plasma. While young stars exhibit exceedingly active coronae (>10 MK) with highly energetic flares, the relatively low temperature ( 3 MK), high density (>1012 cm-3) accretion shock can only be clearly distinguished at high spectral resolution. The nearby Classical T Tauri star TW Hydrae was the first to show evidence of accretion using 50 ks with the Chandra High Energy Transmission Grating (HETG). More recently a Chandra HETG Large Program (489 ks obtained over the course of one month) on TW Hydrae has found evidence for a new type of coronal structure. In the standard model, the accreting gas shocks near the atmosphere of the star and gently settles onto the surface as it slows down and cools. On TW Hydrae the observed post-shock region is not this predicted settling flow, since its mass is 30 times the mass of material that passes through the shock. Instead the stellar atmosphere must be heated to soft X-ray emitting temperatures. Of the CTTS systems observed with the gratings on Chandra and XMM-Newton not all show the accretion shock signature; however, all of them show excess soft X-ray emission related to accretion. The production of highly charged ions in the proximity of both open and closed magnetic field lines has important implications for coronal heating, winds and jets in the presence of accretion. This work is supported by the Chandra X-ray Observatory through a NASA contract with the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory.

  20. On the power spectra of the wind-fed X-ray binary pulsar GX 301 - 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Orlandini, Mauro; Morfill, G. E.

    1992-01-01

    A phenomenological model of accretion which is applied to the wind-fed X-ray binary pulsar GX 301 - 2 is developed, assuming that the accretion onto the neutron star does not occur from a continuous flux of plasma, but from blobs of matter which are threaded by the magnetic field lines onto the magnetic polar caps of the neutron star. These 'lumps' are produced at the magnetospheric limit by magnetohydrodynamical instability, introducing a 'noise' in the accretion process, due to the discontinuity in the flux of matter onto the neutron star. This model is able to describe the change of slope observed in the continuum component of the power spectra of the X-ray binary pulsar GX 301 - 2, in the frequency range 0.01 - 0.1 Hz. The physical properties of the infalling blobs derived in the model are in agreement with the constraints imposed by observations.

  1. Accreting Millisecond Pulsars and Fundamental Physics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strohmayer, Tod

    2005-01-01

    X-ray emission from the surfaces of rapidly rotating neutron stars encodes information about their global properties as well as physical conditions locally. Detailed modelling of, for example, the energy dependent pulse profiles observed from accreting millisecond pulsars and thermonuclear burst oscillations can be used to derive constraints on the masses and radii of neutron stars. These measurements provide direct information on the properties of the dense matter equation of state of the supranuclear density matter in their interiors. Study of absorption lines created in the surface layers can also provide measurements of masses and radii, and may be able to probe aspects of relativistic gravity, such as frame dragging. I will discuss the results of recent efforts to carry out such measurements and their implications for the properties of dense matter.

  2. TW Hya: SPECTRAL VARIABILITY, X-RAYS, AND ACCRETION DIAGNOSTICS

    SciTech Connect

    Dupree, A. K.; Brickhouse, N. S.; Cranmer, S. R.; Luna, G. J. M.; Schneider, E. E.; Bessell, M. S.; Bonanos, A.; Crause, L. A.; Lawson, W. A.; Mallik, S. V.; Schuler, S. C.

    2012-05-01

    The nearest accreting T Tauri star, TW Hya was intensively and continuously observed over {approx}17 days with spectroscopic and photometric measurements from four continents simultaneous with a long segmented exposure using the Chandra satellite. Contemporaneous optical photometry from WASP-S indicates a 4.74 day period was present during this time. The absence of a similar periodicity in the H{alpha} flux and the total X-ray flux which are dominated by accretion processes and the stellar corona, respectively, points to a different source of photometric variations. The H{alpha} emission line appears intrinsically broad and symmetric, and both the profile and its variability suggest an origin in the post-shock cooling region. An accretion event, signaled by soft X-rays, is traced spectroscopically for the first time through the optical emission line profiles. After the accretion event, downflowing turbulent material observed in the H{alpha} and H{beta} lines is followed by He I ({lambda}5876) broadening near the photosphere. Optical veiling resulting from the heated photosphere increases with a delay of {approx}2 hr after the X-ray accretion event. The response of the stellar coronal emission to an increase in the veiling follows {approx}2.4 hr later, giving direct evidence that the stellar corona is heated in part by accretion. Subsequently, the stellar wind becomes re-established. We suggest a model that incorporates the dynamics of this sequential series of events: an accretion shock, a cooling downflow in a supersonically turbulent region, followed by photospheric and later, coronal heating. This model naturally explains the presence of broad optical and ultraviolet lines, and affects the mass accretion rates determined from emission line profiles.

  3. TW Hya: Spectral Variability, X-Rays, and Accretion Diagnostics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dupree, A. K.; Brickhouse, N. S.; Cranmer, S. R.; Luna, G. J. M.; Schneider, E. E.; Bessell, M. S.; Bonanos, A.; Crause, L. A.; Lawson, W. A.; Mallik, S. V.; Schuler, S. C.

    2012-05-01

    The nearest accreting T Tauri star, TW Hya was intensively and continuously observed over ~17 days with spectroscopic and photometric measurements from four continents simultaneous with a long segmented exposure using the Chandra satellite. Contemporaneous optical photometry from WASP-S indicates a 4.74 day period was present during this time. The absence of a similar periodicity in the Hα flux and the total X-ray flux which are dominated by accretion processes and the stellar corona, respectively, points to a different source of photometric variations. The Hα emission line appears intrinsically broad and symmetric, and both the profile and its variability suggest an origin in the post-shock cooling region. An accretion event, signaled by soft X-rays, is traced spectroscopically for the first time through the optical emission line profiles. After the accretion event, downflowing turbulent material observed in the Hα and Hβ lines is followed by He I (λ5876) broadening near the photosphere. Optical veiling resulting from the heated photosphere increases with a delay of ~2 hr after the X-ray accretion event. The response of the stellar coronal emission to an increase in the veiling follows ~2.4 hr later, giving direct evidence that the stellar corona is heated in part by accretion. Subsequently, the stellar wind becomes re-established. We suggest a model that incorporates the dynamics of this sequential series of events: an accretion shock, a cooling downflow in a supersonically turbulent region, followed by photospheric and later, coronal heating. This model naturally explains the presence of broad optical and ultraviolet lines, and affects the mass accretion rates determined from emission line profiles.

  4. Accretion turnoff and rapid evaporation of very light secondaries in low-mass X-ray binaries

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ruderman, M.; Shaham, J.; Tavani, M.

    1989-01-01

    The illumination of companion stars in very low mass X-ray binaries by various kinds of radiation from the neighborhood of the neutron star after accretion has terminated or during accretion is considered. If a neutron star's spun-up period approaches 0.001 s, pulsar kHz radiation can quench accretion by pushing surrounding plasma away from the neutron star, and may leave the companion to be evaporated by the high-energy radiation component expected from an 'isolated' millisecond radiopulsar. Expected accretion-powered MeV gamma-rays and e(+ or -) winds may also be effective in evaporating dwarf companions. Neutron star spin-down energy release may sustain the power in these radiation mechanisms even while accretion falls. Accretion-powered soft X-rays may speed the mass loss of highly evolved dwarf companions, particularly those with a large fraction of carbon and oxygen.

  5. HIGH-RESOLUTION X-RAY SPECTROSCOPY OF THE BURSTING PULSAR GRO J1744-28

    SciTech Connect

    Degenaar, N.; Miller, J. M.; Harrison, F. A.; Kennea, J. A.; Kouveliotou, C.; Younes, G.

    2014-11-20

    The bursting pulsar GRO J1744-28 is a Galactic low-mass X-ray binary that distinguishes itself by displaying type-II X-ray bursts: brief, bright flashes of X-ray emission that likely arise from spasmodic accretion. Combined with its coherent 2.1 Hz X-ray pulsations and relatively high estimated magnetic field, it is a particularly interesting source to study the physics of accretion flows around neutron stars. Here we report on Chandra/High Energy Transmission Grating observations obtained near the peak of its bright 2014 accretion outburst. Spectral analysis suggests the presence of a broad iron emission line centered at E {sub l} ≅ 6.7 keV. Fits with a disk reflection model yield an inclination angle of i ≅ 52° and an inner disk radius of R {sub in} ≅ 85 GM/c {sup 2}, which is much further out than typically found for neutron star low-mass X-ray binaries. Assuming that the disk is truncated at the magnetospheric radius of the neutron star, we estimate a magnetic field strength of B ≅ (2-6) × 10{sup 10} G. Furthermore, we identify an absorption feature near ≅ 6.85 keV that could correspond to blue-shifted Fe XXV and point to a fast disk wind with an outflow velocity of v {sub out} ≅ (7.5-8.2) × 10{sup 3} km s{sup –1} (≅ 0.025c-0.027c). If the covering fraction and filling factor are large, this wind could be energetically important and perhaps account for the fact that the companion star lost significant mass while the magnetic field of the neutron star remained strong.

  6. A new transient pulsar in the Small Magellanic Cloud with an unusual x-ray spectrum

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hughes, John P.

    1994-01-01

    This article reports the discovery of a luminous (3.5 x 10(exp 37) ergs/sec over the 0.2 to 2 keV band) transient X-ray pulsar in the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC) with an extremely soft component to its X-ray spectrum. This is the first time that a spectrum of this type has been seen in this class of X-ray source. The pulse period is 2.7632 s, and the pulse modulation appears to vary with energy from nearly unpulsed in the low-energy band of the ROSAT Position Sensitive Proportional Counter (PSPC) (0.07 to 0.4 keV) to about 50% in the high-energy band (1.0 to 2.4 keV). The object, RX J0059.2-7138, also shows flickering variability in its X-ray emission on timescales of 50 to 100s. The pulse-phase-averaged PSPC X-ray spectrum can be well described by a two-component source model seen through an absorbing column density of approximately 10(exp 21) atoms cm(exp -2). One spectral component is a power law with photon index 2.4. The other component is significantly softer and can be described by either a steeply falling power law or a blackbody with a temperature KT(sub BB) approximately 35 eV. Ths component is transient, but evidently upulsed, and, for the blackbody model fits, requires a large bolometric luminosity: near, or even several times greater than, the Eddington luminosity for a 1.4 solar mass object. When these characteristics of its soft emission are considered, RX J0059.2-7138 appears quite similar to other X-ray sources in the magellanic Clouds, such as CAL 83, CAL 87, and RX J0527.8-6954, which show only extreme ultrasoft (EUS) X-ray spectra. The discovery of RX J0059.2-7138, a probably high-mass X-ray binary, clearly indicates that EUS spectra may arise from accretion-powered neutron-star X-ray sources. This result lends support to the idea that some of the 'pure' EUS sources may be shrouded low-mass X-ray binaries rather than accreting white dwarfs.

  7. X-RAY AND GAMMA-RAY EMISSIONS FROM ROTATION POWERED MILLISECOND PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Takata, J.; Cheng, K. S.; Taam, Ronald E. E-mail: hrspksc@hkucc.hku.hk

    2012-01-20

    The Fermi Large Area Telescope has revealed that rotation powered millisecond pulsars (MSPs) are a major contributor to the Galactic {gamma}-ray source population. Such pulsars may also be important in modeling the quiescent state of several low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs), where optical observations of the companion star suggest the possible existence of rotation powered MSPs. To understand the observational properties of the different evolutionary stages of MSPs, the X-ray and {gamma}-ray emissions associated with the outer gap model are investigated. For rotation powered MSPs, the size of the outer gap and the properties of the high-energy emission are controlled by either the photon-photon pair-creation process or magnetic pair-creation process near the surface. For these pulsars, we find that the outer gap model controlled by the magnetic pair-creation process is preferable in explaining the possible correlations between the {gamma}-ray luminosity or non-thermal X-ray luminosity versus the spin-down power. For the accreting MSPs in quiescent LMXBs, the thermal X-ray emission at the neutron star (NS) surface resulting from deep crustal heating can control the conditions in the outer gap. We argue that the optical modulation observed in the quiescent state of several LMXBs originates from the irradiation of the donor star by {gamma}-rays from the outer gap. In these systems, the irradiation luminosity required for the optical modulation of the source such as SAX J1808.4-3658 can be achieved for a NS of high mass. Finally, we discuss the high-energy emission associated with an intra-binary shock in black widow systems, e.g., PSR B1957+20.

  8. Swings between rotation and accretion power in a binary millisecond pulsar.

    PubMed

    Papitto, A; Ferrigno, C; Bozzo, E; Rea, N; Pavan, L; Burderi, L; Burgay, M; Campana, S; Di Salvo, T; Falanga, M; Filipović, M D; Freire, P C C; Hessels, J W T; Possenti, A; Ransom, S M; Riggio, A; Romano, P; Sarkissian, J M; Stairs, I H; Stella, L; Torres, D F; Wieringa, M H; Wong, G F

    2013-09-26

    It is thought that neutron stars in low-mass binary systems can accrete matter and angular momentum from the companion star and be spun-up to millisecond rotational periods. During the accretion stage, the system is called a low-mass X-ray binary, and bright X-ray emission is observed. When the rate of mass transfer decreases in the later evolutionary stages, these binaries host a radio millisecond pulsar whose emission is powered by the neutron star's rotating magnetic field. This evolutionary model is supported by the detection of millisecond X-ray pulsations from several accreting neutron stars and also by the evidence for a past accretion disc in a rotation-powered millisecond pulsar. It has been proposed that a rotation-powered pulsar may temporarily switch on during periods of low mass inflow in some such systems. Only indirect evidence for this transition has hitherto been observed. Here we report observations of accretion-powered, millisecond X-ray pulsations from a neutron star previously seen as a rotation-powered radio pulsar. Within a few days after a month-long X-ray outburst, radio pulses were again detected. This not only shows the evolutionary link between accretion and rotation-powered millisecond pulsars, but also that some systems can swing between the two states on very short timescales. PMID:24067710

  9. Physics of Accretion in X-Ray Binaries

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vrtilek, Saeqa D.

    2004-01-01

    This project consists of several related investigations directed to the study of mass transfer processes in X-ray binaries. Models developed over several years incorporating highly detailed physics will be tested on a balanced mix of existing data and planned observations with both ground and space-based observatories. The extended time coverage of the observations and the existence of {\\it simultaneous} X-ray, ultraviolet, and optical observations will be particularly beneficial for studying the accretion flows. These investigations, which take as detailed a look at the accretion process in X-ray binaries as is now possible, test current models to their limits, and force us to extend them. We now have the ability to do simultaneous ultraviolet/X-ray/optical spectroscopy with HST, Chandra, XMM, and ground-based observatories. The rich spectroscopy that these Observations give us must be interpreted principally by reference to detailed models, the development of which is already well underway; tests of these essential interpretive tools are an important product of the proposed investigations.

  10. Long-term evolution of anomalous X-ray pulsars and soft gamma repeaters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benli, O.; Ertan, Ü.

    2016-04-01

    We have investigated the long-term evolution of individual anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs) and soft gamma repeaters (SGRs) with relatively well constrained X-ray luminosity and rotational properties. In the frame of the fallback disc model, we have obtained the ranges of disc mass and dipole field strength that can produce the observed source properties. We have compared our results with those obtained earlier for dim isolated neutron stars (XDINs). Our results show that (1) the X-ray luminosity, period and period derivative of the individual AXP/SGR sources can be produced self-consistently in the fallback disc model with very similar basic disc parameters to those used earlier in the same model to explain the long-term evolution of XDINs, (2) except two sources, AXP/SGRs are evolving in the accretion phase; these two exceptional sources, like XDINs, completed their accretion phase in the past and are now evolving in the final propeller phase and still slowing down with the disc torques, (3) the dipole field strengths (at the poles) of XDINs are in the 1011-1012 G range, while AXP/SGRs have relatively strong dipole fields between 1 and 6 × 1012 G, and (4) the source properties can be obtained with large ranges of disc masses which do not allow a clear test of correlation between disc masses and the magnetic dipole fields for the whole AXP/SGRs and XDIN population.

  11. Cyclotron Resonance in Accreting Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhattacharya, Dipankar

    2016-07-01

    Cyclotron Resonance Absorption/Scattering features provide direct measurement of magnetic field strength in the line forming region. This has enabled the estimation of magnetic field strengths of nearly two dozen neutron stars in accreting high mass binary systems. With improved spectroscopic sensitivity, new X-ray observatories such as NuSTAR, Astrosat and Hitomi are opening the doors to studying detailed features such as the line shape and phase dependence with high significance. Such studies will help understand the nature of matter accumulation in, and outflow from, the magnetically confined accretion column on the neutron star. This talk will describe the results of MHD simulations of the matter flow in such systems, the diagnostics of such flows using cyclotron lines, and comparison with recent observations from NuSTAR and Astrosat.

  12. CHANDRA PHASE-RESOLVED X-RAY SPECTROSCOPY OF THE CRAB PULSAR

    SciTech Connect

    Weisskopf, Martin C.; Tennant, Allyn F.; O'Dell, Stephen L.; Elsner, Ronald F.; Yakovlev, Dmitry G.; Harding, Alice; Zavlin, Vyacheslav E.; Becker, Werner

    2011-12-20

    We present a new study of the X-ray spectral properties of the Crab Pulsar. The superb angular resolution of the Chandra X-Ray Observatory enables distinguishing the pulsar from the surrounding nebulosity. Analysis of the spectrum as a function of pulse phase allows the least-biased measure of interstellar X-ray extinction due primarily to photoelectric absorption and secondarily to scattering by dust grains in the direction of the Crab Nebula. We modify previous findings that the line of sight to the Crab is underabundant in oxygen and provide measurements with improved accuracy and less bias. Using the abundances and cross sections from Wilms et al. we find [O/H] = (5.28 {+-} 0.28) Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -4} (4.9 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -4} is solar abundance). We also measure for the first time the impact of scattering of flux out of the image by interstellar grains. We find {tau}{sub scat} = 0.147 {+-} 0.043. Analysis of the spectrum as a function of pulse phase also measures the X-ray spectral index even at pulse minimum-albeit with increasing statistical uncertainty. The spectral variations are, by and large, consistent with a sinusoidal variation. The only significant variation from the sinusoid occurs over the same phase range as some rather abrupt behavior in the optical polarization magnitude and position angle. We also compare these spectral variations to those observed in gamma-rays and conclude that our measurements are both a challenge and a guide to future modeling and will thus eventually help us understand pair cascade processes in pulsar magnetospheres. The data are also used to set new, and less biased, upper limits to the surface temperature of the neutron star for different models of the neutron star atmosphere. We discuss how such data are best connected to theoretical models of neutron star cooling and neutron star interiors. The data restrict the neutrino emission rate in the pulsar core and the amount of light elements in the heat

  13. Properties and observability of glitches and anti-glitches in accreting pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ducci, L.; Pizzochero, P. M.; Doroshenko, V.; Santangelo, A.; Mereghetti, S.; Ferrigno, C.

    2015-06-01

    Several glitches have been observed in young, isolated radio pulsars, while a clear detection in accretion-powered X-ray pulsars is still lacking. We use the Pizzochero snowplow model for pulsar glitches as well as starquake models to determine for the first time the expected properties of glitches in accreting pulsars and their observability. Since some accreting pulsars show accretion-induced long-term spin-up, we also investigate the possibility that anti-glitches occur in these stars. We find that glitches caused by quakes in a slow accreting neutron star are very rare and their detection extremely unlikely. On the contrary, glitches and anti-glitches caused by a transfer of angular momentum between the superfluid neutron vortices and the non-superfluid component may take place in accreting pulsars more often. We calculate the maximum jump in angular velocity of an anti-glitch and we find that it is expected to be ΔΩa - gl ≈ 10-5 - 10-4 rad s-1. We also note that since accreting pulsars usually have rotational angular velocities lower than those of isolated glitching pulsars, both glitches and anti-glitches are expected to have long rise and recovery timescales compared to isolated glitching pulsars, with glitches and anti-glitches appearing as a simple step in angular velocity. Among accreting pulsars, we find that GX 1+4 is the best candidate for the detection of glitches with currently operating X-ray instruments and future missions such as the proposed Large Observatory for X-ray Timing (LOFT).

  14. 10 micron detection of the hard X-ray transient GRO J0422+32: Free-free emission from an X-ray-driven accretion disk wind?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Paradijs, Van J.; Telesco, C. M.; Kouveliotou, C.; Fishman, G. J.

    1994-01-01

    We report the detection of 10 micrometer emission from the transient low-mass X-ray binary (LMXB) and optical nova GRO J0422+32 near the maximum of its outburst. We discuss this result in terms of (1) a 'standard' model according to which low-energy radiation of LMXB is caused by reprocessing of X-rays in an accretion disk; (2) emission from a cool secondary star; (3) emission from dust grains heated by the transient X-rays, and (4) free-free emission from an X-ray-driven wind from the accretion disk. Only the fourth alternative provides a viable explanation for the observed 10 micrometer emission, with a mass-loss rate in the disk wind that may be substantially higher than the rate of accretion onto the compact star. The presence of such a wind may have a profound effect on the evolution of the binary, and contribute to the solution of the 'birthrate problem' of millisecond ratio pulsars.

  15. An ultraluminous X-ray source powered by an accreting neutron star.

    PubMed

    Bachetti, M; Harrison, F A; Walton, D J; Grefenstette, B W; Chakrabarty, D; Fürst, F; Barret, D; Beloborodov, A; Boggs, S E; Christensen, F E; Craig, W W; Fabian, A C; Hailey, C J; Hornschemeier, A; Kaspi, V; Kulkarni, S R; Maccarone, T; Miller, J M; Rana, V; Stern, D; Tendulkar, S P; Tomsick, J; Webb, N A; Zhang, W W

    2014-10-01

    The majority of ultraluminous X-ray sources are point sources that are spatially offset from the nuclei of nearby galaxies and whose X-ray luminosities exceed the theoretical maximum for spherical infall (the Eddington limit) onto stellar-mass black holes. Their X-ray luminosities in the 0.5-10 kiloelectronvolt energy band range from 10(39) to 10(41) ergs per second. Because higher masses imply less extreme ratios of the luminosity to the isotropic Eddington limit, theoretical models have focused on black hole rather than neutron star systems. The most challenging sources to explain are those at the luminous end of the range (more than 10(40) ergs per second), which require black hole masses of 50-100 times the solar value or significant departures from the standard thin disk accretion that powers bright Galactic X-ray binaries, or both. Here we report broadband X-ray observations of the nuclear region of the galaxy M82 that reveal pulsations with an average period of 1.37 seconds and a 2.5-day sinusoidal modulation. The pulsations result from the rotation of a magnetized neutron star, and the modulation arises from its binary orbit. The pulsed flux alone corresponds to an X-ray luminosity in the 3-30 kiloelectronvolt range of 4.9 × 10(39) ergs per second. The pulsating source is spatially coincident with a variable source that can reach an X-ray luminosity in the 0.3-10 kiloelectronvolt range of 1.8 × 10(40) ergs per second. This association implies a luminosity of about 100 times the Eddington limit for a 1.4-solar-mass object, or more than ten times brighter than any known accreting pulsar. This implies that neutron stars may not be rare in the ultraluminous X-ray population, and it challenges physical models for the accretion of matter onto magnetized compact objects. PMID:25297433

  16. Revealing accretion onto black holes through X-ray reflection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plant, D.; Fender, R.; Ponti, G.; Munoz-Darias, T.; Coriat, M.

    2014-07-01

    Understanding the dynamics behind black hole state transitions and the changes they reflect in outbursts has become long-standing problem. The X-ray reflection spectrum describes the interaction between the hard X-ray source (the power-law continuum) and the cool accretion disc it illuminates, and thus permits an indirect view of how the two evolve. We present a systematic analysis of the reflection spectrum throughout three outbursts (500+ RXTE observations) of the black hole binary GX 339-4, representing the largest study applying a self-consistent treatment of reflection to date. Particular attention is payed to the coincident evolution of the power-law and reflection, which can be used to determine the accretion geometry. The hard state is found to be distinctly reflection weak, however the ratio of reflection to power-law gradually increases as the source luminosity rises. In contrast the reflection is found dominate the power-law throughout most of the soft state, with increasing supremacy as the source decays. Using results from archival and AO-12 observations of GX 339-4 with XMM-Newton we reveal the dynamics driving this evolution and the nature of accretion onto black holes in outburst.

  17. THE RADIATIVE X-RAY AND GAMMA-RAY EFFICIENCIES OF ROTATION-POWERED PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Vink, Jacco; Bamba, Aya; Yamazaki, Ryo

    2011-02-01

    We present a statistical analysis of the X-ray luminosity of rotation-powered pulsars and their surrounding nebulae using the sample of Kargaltsev and Pavlov, and we complement this with an analysis of the {gamma}-ray emission of Fermi-detected pulsars. We report a strong trend in the efficiency with which spin-down power is converted to X-ray and {gamma}-ray emission with characteristic age: young pulsars and their surrounding nebulae are efficient X-ray emitters, whereas in contrast old pulsars are efficient {gamma}-ray emitters. We divided the X-ray sample in a young ({tau}{sub c} < 1.7 x 10{sup 4} yr) and old sample and used linear regression to search for correlations between the logarithm of the X-ray and {gamma}-ray luminosities and the logarithms of the periods and period derivatives. The X-ray emission from young pulsars and their nebulae are both consistent with L{sub X}{proportional_to} P-dot{sup 3}/P{sup 6}. For old pulsars and their nebulae the X-ray luminosity is consistent with a more or less constant efficiency {eta}{identical_to}L{sub X}/ E-dot{sub rot}{approx}8x10{sup -5}. For the {gamma}-ray luminosity we confirm that L{sub {gamma}} {proportional_to} {radical}E-dot{sub rot}. We discuss these findings in the context of pair production inside pulsar magnetospheres and the striped wind model. We suggest that the striped wind model may explain the similarity between the X-ray properties of the pulsar wind nebulae and the pulsars themselves, which according to the striped wind model may both find their origin outside the light cylinder, in the pulsar wind zone.

  18. Distance Estimation for Eclipsing X-Ray Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Robert E.; Paul, B.; Raichur, H.

    2006-06-01

    Recent interest in eclipsing binaries as distance indicators leads naturally into direct distance estimation for X-ray pulsars by combination of pulse arrival times, radial velocities, X-ray eclipse duration, and spectra. Optical light curves may help in some cases by measuring tides and irradiation, although dynamical tides in eccentric systems limit light curve usefulness. Pulse arrivals give an absolute scale and also orbit shape and orientation, which may be poorly known from radial velocities. For example, orbital eccentricity of 0.09 is known from Vela X1 pulse arrivals, although optical velocities are too noisy to measure eccentricity accurately. Combined pulse and optical velocity data give mass information. A lower limit to sin i from eclipse duration sets a lower limit to R2, and for the general eccentric case. A mass ratio sets lobe size and thus an upper limit to R2, so boxing R2 within a narrow range may be possible. T2 can be assessed from spectra so EB distance estimation can work if magnitude is known in one or more standard bands such as B or V. Realistic distance uncertainties are explored. In regard to new observations, Vela X-1 was observed by RXTE over about nine days in January 2005, including an eclipse of about 3.5 days. We extracted the light curves with time resolution 0.125 s. Spin period measurements by the Chi square criterion show Doppler variation with orbital phase and mean spin period 283.5 s. Pulse profiles of that period were averaged in sets of 10 at 138 phases. Cross correlation for the first 40 pulses show the expected Doppler arrival time variation. As the Vela X-1 pulse period is large compared to light travel time across the orbit, the pulses are already phase connected. Support is by U.S. National Science Foundation grant 0307561.

  19. Testing Models of Resonant Compton Scattering in X-Ray Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brainerd, Jerome J.

    2000-01-01

    Over the performance period covered by the grant, the principal investigator modified a Monte Carlo Compton scattering code to model the propagation of x-rays through the magnetosphere of accreting neutron stars. These modifications were made to enable the author to compare the observations of x-ray pulsars to theoretical models of the system. The original code was designed to study relativistic plasmas with one of two geometries: a plane parallel plasma with a differential relativistic bulk velocity, and a static spherically symmetric plasma.- This code did not treat gravitational bending or bulk motion in the magnetosphere of a neutron star. Under the grant, the author incorporated code to trace light paths in a Schwarzschild metric. The code was modified to keep track of the photon polarization during propagati on. The investigator also modified the code so that bulk motion in an axisymmetric system is treated properly. An approximate treatment for resonant Compton scattering was added to the code. Finally, code was added that creates model observables that can be compared to observations, such as projected x-ray emission maps and energy-dependent light curves. Comparison to observations is now commencing.

  20. Testing accretion disk instabilities in X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bagińska, Patrycja; Różańska, Agata; Janiuk, Agnieszka; Czerny, Bożena

    2014-12-01

    We study disk instabilities in black hole binaries in which X-ray novae outbursts were observed. Typically, one outburst occurs in each light curve, with total duration from 30 up to 400 days. The shape of an outburst can be very regular fast rise exponential decay (FRED) characteristic for ionisation instability mechanism that occurs in accretion disks, or irregular suggesting that, beside FRED, additional flickering occurs. We use the model which predicts time dependent evolution of ionisation instability in an accretion disk around black hole, assuming viscosity parameter to be proportional to the total pressure. We test it in detail for two objects: GX 339-4 and XTE J1818-245. The modelled light curves agree with the collected RXTE light curves, indicating that disk instability works in those objects.

  1. X-RAY POLARIZATION FROM ACCRETING BLACK HOLES: CORONAL EMISSION

    SciTech Connect

    Schnittman, Jeremy D.; Krolik, Julian H. E-mail: jhk@pha.jhu.ed

    2010-04-01

    We present new calculations of X-ray polarization from accreting black holes (BHs), using a Monte Carlo ray-tracing code in full general relativity. In our model, an optically thick disk in the BH equatorial plane produces thermal seed photons with polarization oriented parallel to the disk surface. These seed photons are then inverse-Compton scattered through a hot (but thermal) corona, producing a hard X-ray power-law spectrum. We consider three different models for the corona geometry: a wedge 'sandwich' with aspect ratio H/R and vertically integrated optical depth tau{sub 0} constant throughout the disk; an inhomogeneous 'clumpy' corona with a finite number of hot clouds distributed randomly above the disk within a wedge geometry; and a spherical corona of uniform density, centered on the BH and surrounded by a truncated thermal disk with inner radius R{sub edge}. In all cases, we find a characteristic transition from horizontal polarization at low energies to vertical polarization above the thermal peak; the vertical direction is defined as the projection of the BH spin axis on the plane of the sky. We show how the details of the spectropolarization signal can be used to distinguish between these models and infer various properties of the corona and BH. Although the bulk of this paper focuses on stellar-mass BHs, we also consider the effects of coronal scattering on the X-ray polarization signal from supermassive BHs in active galactic nuclei.

  2. Pulsar Polar Cap Heating and Surface Thermal X-ray Emission. 1; Curvature Radiation Pair Fronts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.; Muslimov, Alexander G.; White, Nicholas E. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    We investigate the effect of pulsar polar cap (PC) heating produced by positrons returning from the upper pair formation front. Our calculations are based on a self-consistent treatment of the pair dynamics and the effect of electric field screening by the returning positrons. We calculate the resultant X-ray luminosities and discuss the dependence of the PC heating efficiencies on pulsar parameters, such as characteristic spin-down age, spin period, and surface magnetic field strength. In this study we concentrate on the regime where the pairs are produced in a magnetic field by curvature photons emitted by accelerating electrons. Our theoretical results are not in conflict with the available observational x-ray data and suggest that the effect of PC heating should significantly contribute to the thermal x-ray fluxes from middle-aged and old pulsars. The implications for current and future x-ray observations of pulsars are briefly outlined.

  3. Accretion and Outflows in X-ray Binaries: What's Really Going on During X-ray Quiescence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    MacDonald, Rachel K. D.; Bailyn, Charles D.; Buxton, Michelle

    2015-01-01

    X-ray binaries, consisting of a star and a stellar-mass black hole, are wonderful laboratories for studying accretion and outflows. They evolve on timescales quite accessible to us, unlike their supermassive cousins, and allow the possibility of gaining a deeper understanding of these two common astrophysical processes. Different wavelength regimes reveal different aspects of the systems: radio emission is largely generated by outflows and jets, X-ray emission by inner accretion flows, and optical/infrared (OIR) emission by the outer disk and companion star. The search for relationships between these different wavelengths is thus an area of active research, aiming to reveal deeper connections between accretion and outflows.Initial evidence for a strong, tight correlation between radio and X-ray emission has weakened as further observations and newly-discovered sources have been obtained. This has led to discussions of multiple tracks or clusters, or the possibility that no overall relation exists for the currently-known population of X-ray binaries. Our ability to distinguish among these options is hampered by a relative lack of observations at lower luminosities, and especially of truly X-ray quiescent (non-outbursting) systems. Although X-ray binaries spend the bulk of their existence in quiescence, few quiescent sources have been observed and multiple observations of individual sources are largely nonexistent. Here we discuss new observations of the lowest-luminosity quiescent X-ray binary, A0620-00, and the place this object occupies in investigations of the radio/X-ray plane. For the first time, we also incorporate simultaneous OIR data with the radio and X-ray data.In December 2013 we took simultaneous observations of A0620-00 in the X-ray (Chandra), the radio (EVLA), and the OIR (SMARTS 1.3m). These X-ray and radio data allowed us to investigate similarities among quiescent X-ray binaries, and changes over time for this individual object, in the radio/X-ray

  4. ORBITAL DECAY AND EVIDENCE OF DISK FORMATION IN THE X-RAY BINARY PULSAR OAO 1657-415

    SciTech Connect

    Jenke, P. A.; Wilson-Hodge, C. A.

    2012-11-10

    OAO 1657-415 is an eclipsing X-ray binary wind-fed pulsar that has exhibited smooth spin-up/spin-down episodes and has undergone several torque reversals throughout its long history of observation. We present a frequency history spanning nearly 19 years of observations from the Burst and Transient Source Experiment and from the Gamma-Ray Burst Monitor (Fermi/GBM). Our analysis suggests two modes of accretion: one resulting in steady spin-up correlated with flux during which we believe a stable accretion disk is present and one in which the neutron star is spinning down at a lesser rate which is uncorrelated with flux. Orbital elements of the pulsar system are determined at several intervals throughout this history. With these ephemerides, statistically significant orbital decay with a P-dot {sub orb}=(-9.74{+-}0.78) Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -8} is established.

  5. Radiation-driven evolution of low-mass x-ray binaries and the formation of millisecond pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Tavani, M. California Univ., Berkeley, CA . Dept. of Astronomy)

    1991-08-08

    Recent data on low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs) and millisecond pulsars (MSPs) pose a challenge to evolutionary theories which neglect the effects of disk and comparison irradiation. Here we discuss the main features of a radiation-driven (RD) evolutionary model that may be applicable to several LMXBs. According to this model, radiation from the accreting compact star in LMXBs vaporizes'' the accretion disk and the companion star by driving a self-sustained mass loss until a sudden accretion-turn off occurs. The main characteristics of the RD-evolution are: (1) lifetime of RD-LMXB's is of order 10{sup 7} years or less; (2) both the orbital period gap and the X-ray luminosity may be consequences of RD-evolution of LMXB's containing lower main sequence and degeneration companion stars; (3) the companion star may transfer mass to the primary even if it underfills its Roche lobe; (4) a class of recycled MSPs can continue to vaporize the low-mass companions by a strong pulsar wind even after the accretion turn-off; (5) the RD-evolutionary model resolves the apparent statistical descrepancy between the number of MSPs and their LMXB progenitors in the Galaxy. We discuss the implications of the discovery of single MSPs in low-density globular clusters and the recent measurements of short orbital timescales of four LMXBs. 34 refs., 3 figs., 2 tabs.

  6. Analysis and design of grazing incidence x-ray optics for pulsar navigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zuo, Fuchang; Chen, Jianwu; Li, Liansheng; Mei, Zhiwu

    2013-10-01

    As a promising new technology for deep space exploration due to autonomous capability, pulsar navigation has attracted extensive attentions from academy and engineering domains. The pulsar navigation accuracy is determined by the measurement accuracy of Time of Arrival (TOA) of X-ray photon, which can be enhanced through design of appropriate optics. The energy band of X-ray suitable for pulsar navigation is 0.1-10keV, the effective focusing of which can be primely and effectively realized by the grazing incidence reflective optics. The Wolter-I optics, originally proposed based on a paraboloid mirror and a hyperboloid mirror for X-ray imaging, has long been widely developed and employed in X-ray observatory. Some differences, however, remain in the requirements on optics between astronomical X-ray observation and pulsar navigation. X-ray concentrator, the simplified Wolter-I optics, providing single reflection by a paraboloid mirror, is more suitable for pulsar navigation. In this paper, therefore, the requirements on aperture, effective area and focal length of the grazing incidence reflective optics were firstly analyzed based on the characteristics, such as high time resolution, large effective area and low angular resolution, of the pulsar navigation. Furthermore, the preliminary design of optical system and overall structure, as well as the diaphragm, was implemented for the X-ray concentrator. Through optical and FEA simulation, system engineering analysis on the X-ray concentrator was finally performed to analyze the effects of environmental factors on the performance, providing basis and guidance for fabrication of the X-ray concentrator grazing incidence optics.

  7. X-ray and γ-ray studies of the millisecond pulsar and possible X-ray binary/radio pulsar transition object PSR J1723-2837

    SciTech Connect

    Bogdanov, Slavko; Esposito, Paolo; Crawford III, Fronefield; Possenti, Andrea; McLaughlin, Maura A.; Freire, Paulo

    2014-01-20

    We present X-ray observations of the 'redback' eclipsing radio millisecond pulsar (MSP) and candidate radio pulsar/X-ray binary transition object PSR J1723-2837. The X-ray emission from the system is predominantly non-thermal and exhibits pronounced variability as a function of orbital phase, with a factor of ∼2 reduction in brightness around superior conjunction. Such temporal behavior appears to be a defining characteristic of this variety of peculiar MSP binaries and is likely caused by a partial geometric occultation by the main-sequence-like companion of a shock within the binary. There is no indication of diffuse X-ray emission from a bow shock or pulsar wind nebula associated with the pulsar. We also report on a search for point source emission and γ-ray pulsations in Fermi Large Area Telescope data using a likelihood analysis and photon probability weighting. Although PSR J1723-2837 is consistent with being a γ-ray point source, due to the strong Galactic diffuse emission at its position a definitive association cannot be established. No statistically significant pulsations or modulation at the orbital period are detected. For a presumed detection, the implied γ-ray luminosity is ≲5% of its spin-down power. This indicates that PSR J1723-2837 is either one of the least efficient γ-ray producing MSPs or, if the detection is spurious, the γ-ray emission pattern is not directed toward us.

  8. A CHANDRA OBSERVATION OF THE BURSTING MILLISECOND X-RAY PULSAR IGR J17511-3057

    SciTech Connect

    Paizis, A.; Nowak, M. A.; Rodriguez, J.; Chaty, S.; Del Santo, M.; Ubertini, P. E-mail: mnowak@space.mit.edu

    2012-08-10

    IGR J17511-3057 is a low-mass X-ray binary hosting a neutron star and is one of the few accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars with X-ray bursts. We report on a 20 ks Chandra grating observation of IGR J17511-3057, performed on 2009 September 22. We determine the most accurate X-ray position of IGR J17511-3057, {alpha}{sub J2000} = 17{sup h}51{sup m}08.{sup s}66, {delta}{sub J2000} = -30 Degree-Sign 57'41.''0 (90% uncertainty of 0.''6). During the observation, a {approx}54 s long type-I X-ray burst is detected. The persistent (non-burst) emission has an absorbed 0.5-8 keV luminosity of 1.7 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 36} erg s{sup -1} (at 6.9 kpc) and can be well described by a thermal Comptonization model of soft, {approx}0.6 keV, seed photons upscattered by a hot corona. The type-I X-ray burst spectrum, with average luminosity over the 54 s duration L{sub 0.5-8{sub keV}} = 1.6 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 37} erg s{sup -1}, can be well described by a blackbody with kT{sub bb} {approx} 1.6 keV and R{sub bb} {approx} 5 km. While an evolution in temperature of the blackbody can be appreciated throughout the burst (average peak kT{sub bb} = 2.5{sup +0.8}{sub -0.4} keV to tail kT{sub bb} = 1.3{sup +0.2}{sub -0.1} keV), the relative emitting surface shows no evolution. The overall persistent and type-I burst properties observed during the Chandra observation are consistent with what was previously reported during the 2009 outburst of IGR J17511-3057.

  9. SXP 214: An X-Ray Pulsar in the Small Magellanic Cloud, Crossing the Circumstellar Disk of the Companion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hong, JaeSub; Antoniou, Vallia; Zezas, Andreas; Haberl, Frank; Drake, Jeremy J.; Plucinsky, Paul P.; Gaetz, Terrance; Sasaki, Manami; Williams, Benjamin; Long, Knox S.; Blair, William P.; Winkler, P. Frank; Wright, Nicholas J.; Laycock, Silas; Udalski, Andrzej

    2016-07-01

    Located in the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC), SXP 214 is an X-ray pulsar in a high mass X-ray binary system with a Be-star companion. A recent survey of the SMC under a Chandra X-ray Visionary program found that the source was in a transition when the X-ray flux was on a steady rise. The Lomb–Scargle periodogram revealed a pulse period of 211.49 ± 0.42 s, which is significantly (>5σ) shorter than the previous measurements made with XMM-Newton and RXTE. This implies that the system has gone through sudden spin-up episodes recently. The pulse profile shows a sharp eclipse-like feature with a modulation amplitude of >95%. The linear rise of the observed X-ray luminosity from ≲2× to 7× {10}35 erg s‑1 is correlated with a steady softening of the X-ray spectrum, which can be described by the changes in the local absorption from N H ˜ 1024 to ≲1020 cm‑2 for an absorbed power-law model. The soft X-ray emission below 2 keV was absent in the early part of the observation when only the pulsating hard X-ray component was observed, whereas at later times, both soft and hard X-ray components were observed to be pulsating. A likely explanation is that the neutron star was initially hidden in the circumstellar disk of the companion, and later came out of the disk with the accreted material that continued fueling the observed pulsation.

  10. SXP 214: An X-Ray Pulsar in the Small Magellanic Cloud, Crossing the Circumstellar Disk of the Companion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hong, JaeSub; Antoniou, Vallia; Zezas, Andreas; Haberl, Frank; Drake, Jeremy J.; Plucinsky, Paul P.; Gaetz, Terrance; Sasaki, Manami; Williams, Benjamin; Long, Knox S.; Blair, William P.; Winkler, P. Frank; Wright, Nicholas J.; Laycock, Silas; Udalski, Andrzej

    2016-07-01

    Located in the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC), SXP 214 is an X-ray pulsar in a high mass X-ray binary system with a Be-star companion. A recent survey of the SMC under a Chandra X-ray Visionary program found that the source was in a transition when the X-ray flux was on a steady rise. The Lomb–Scargle periodogram revealed a pulse period of 211.49 ± 0.42 s, which is significantly (>5σ) shorter than the previous measurements made with XMM-Newton and RXTE. This implies that the system has gone through sudden spin-up episodes recently. The pulse profile shows a sharp eclipse-like feature with a modulation amplitude of >95%. The linear rise of the observed X-ray luminosity from ≲2× to 7× {10}35 erg s‑1 is correlated with a steady softening of the X-ray spectrum, which can be described by the changes in the local absorption from N H ∼ 1024 to ≲1020 cm‑2 for an absorbed power-law model. The soft X-ray emission below 2 keV was absent in the early part of the observation when only the pulsating hard X-ray component was observed, whereas at later times, both soft and hard X-ray components were observed to be pulsating. A likely explanation is that the neutron star was initially hidden in the circumstellar disk of the companion, and later came out of the disk with the accreted material that continued fueling the observed pulsation.

  11. Numerical Solution of the Radiative Transfer Equation: X-Ray Spectral Formation from Cylindrical Accretion onto a Magnetized Neutron Star

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fairnelli, R.; Ceccobello, C.; Romano, P.; Titarchuk, L.

    2011-01-01

    Predicting the emerging X-ray spectra in several astrophysical objects is of great importance, in particular when the observational data are compared with theoretical models. This requires developing numerical routines for the solution of the radiative transfer equation according to the expected physical conditions of the systems under study. Aims. We have developed an algorithm solving the radiative transfer equation in the Fokker-Planck approximation when both thermal and bulk Comptonization take place. The algorithm is essentially a relaxation method, where stable solutions are obtained when the system has reached its steady-state equilibrium. Methods. We obtained the solution of the radiative transfer equation in the two-dimensional domain defined by the photon energy E and optical depth of the system pi using finite-differences for the partial derivatives, and imposing specific boundary conditions for the solutions. We treated the case of cylindrical accretion onto a magnetized neutron star. Results. We considered a blackbody seed spectrum of photons with exponential distribution across the accretion column and for an accretion where the velocity reaches its maximum at the stellar surface and at the top of the accretion column, respectively. In both cases higher values of the electron temperature and of the optical depth pi produce flatter and harder spectra. Other parameters contributing to the spectral formation are the steepness of the vertical velocity profile, the albedo at the star surface, and the radius of the accretion column. The latter parameter modifies the emerging spectra in a specular way for the two assumed accretion profiles. Conclusions. The algorithm has been implemented in the XPEC package for X-ray fitting and is specifically dedicated to the physical framework of accretion at the polar cap of a neutron star with a high magnetic field (approx > 10(exp 12) G). This latter case is expected to be of typical accreting systems such as X-ray

  12. High energy X-ray observations of the 38-second pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Byrne, P. F.; Levine, A. M.; Bautz, M.; Howe, S. K.; Lang, F. L.; Primini, F. A.; Lewin, W. H. G.; Gruber, D. E.; Knight, F. K.; Nolan, P. L.

    1981-01-01

    The results of observations of the 38-second pulsar obtained at high X-ray energies (13-180 keV) with the UCSD/MIT instrument aboard HEAO 1 are reported. The results include a measurement of the source location, measurement of the pulse profile, and determination of the average intensity and spectrum during each of three time intervals spanning a baseline of 1 year. The total intensity of the pulsar is seen to vary on a 6-month time scale. The spectrum is hard but, like other X-ray pulsars, steepens at energies above 20 keV.

  13. A Study of the X-Ray Emission from Three Radio Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Slane, Patrick O. (Principal Investigator)

    1996-01-01

    The subject grant is for work on a study of x-ray emission from isolated pulsars. The purpose of the study was to: determine whether the pulsars were x-ray sources; and, if so, search for evidence of pulsations at the known radio period; and study the nature of the x-ray emission. Observation of the pulsar PSR 0355+54 were obtained, and the analysis of these data is complete. These results were reported at the 183rd AAS Meeting, and in a paper entitled 'X-Ray Emission from PSR 0355+54' which as published in the The Astrophysical Journal. Also obtained an approx. 3 ks PSPC observations of PSR 1642-03. A summary of the results from these data were reported in a Conference Proceedings for the 'New Horizon of X-ray Astronomy' symposium. In addition, as part of a study with a student from the SAO Summer Intern Program, I incorporated ROSAT archival data in an extended study of pulsar emission. These results were reported at the 185th AAS Meeting, and in a paper entitled 'Soft X-ray Emission from Selected Isolated Pulsars' which was published in The Astrophysical Journal (Letters).

  14. X-RAY STUDIES OF THE BLACK WIDOW PULSAR PSR B1957+20

    SciTech Connect

    Huang, R. H. H.; Kong, A. K. H.; Takata, J.; Cheng, K. S.; Hui, C. Y.; Lin, L. C. C.

    2012-11-20

    We report on Chandra observations of the black widow pulsar, PSR B1957+20. Evidence for a binary-phase dependence of the X-ray emission from the pulsar is found with a deep observation. The binary-phase-resolved spectral analysis reveals non-thermal X-ray emission of PSR B1957+20, confirming the results of previous studies. This suggests that the X-rays are mostly due to intra-binary shock emission, which is strongest when the pulsar wind interacts with the ablated material from the companion star. The geometry of the peak emission is determined in our study. The marginal softening of the spectrum of the non-thermal X-ray tail may indicate that particles injected at the termination shock are dominated by synchrotron cooling.

  15. Synchronous x-ray and radio mode switches: a rapid global transformation of the pulsar magnetosphere.

    PubMed

    Hermsen, W; Hessels, J W T; Kuiper, L; van Leeuwen, J; Mitra, D; de Plaa, J; Rankin, J M; Stappers, B W; Wright, G A E; Basu, R; Alexov, A; Coenen, T; Grießmeier, J-M; Hassall, T E; Karastergiou, A; Keane, E; Kondratiev, V I; Kramer, M; Kuniyoshi, M; Noutsos, A; Serylak, M; Pilia, M; Sobey, C; Weltevrede, P; Zagkouris, K; Asgekar, A; Avruch, I M; Batejat, F; Bell, M E; Bell, M R; Bentum, M J; Bernardi, G; Best, P; Bîrzan, L; Bonafede, A; Breitling, F; Broderick, J; Brüggen, M; Butcher, H R; Ciardi, B; Duscha, S; Eislöffel, J; Falcke, H; Fender, R; Ferrari, C; Frieswijk, W; Garrett, M A; de Gasperin, F; de Geus, E; Gunst, A W; Heald, G; Hoeft, M; Horneffer, A; Iacobelli, M; Kuper, G; Maat, P; Macario, G; Markoff, S; McKean, J P; Mevius, M; Miller-Jones, J C A; Morganti, R; Munk, H; Orrú, E; Paas, H; Pandey-Pommier, M; Pandey, V N; Pizzo, R; Polatidis, A G; Rawlings, S; Reich, W; Röttgering, H; Scaife, A M M; Schoenmakers, A; Shulevski, A; Sluman, J; Steinmetz, M; Tagger, M; Tang, Y; Tasse, C; ter Veen, S; Vermeulen, R; van de Brink, R H; van Weeren, R J; Wijers, R A M J; Wise, M W; Wucknitz, O; Yatawatta, S; Zarka, P

    2013-01-25

    Pulsars emit from low-frequency radio waves up to high-energy gamma-rays, generated anywhere from the stellar surface out to the edge of the magnetosphere. Detecting correlated mode changes across the electromagnetic spectrum is therefore key to understanding the physical relationship among the emission sites. Through simultaneous observations, we detected synchronous switching in the radio and x-ray emission properties of PSR B0943+10. When the pulsar is in a sustained radio-"bright" mode, the x-rays show only an unpulsed, nonthermal component. Conversely, when the pulsar is in a radio-"quiet" mode, the x-ray luminosity more than doubles and a 100% pulsed thermal component is observed along with the nonthermal component. This indicates rapid, global changes to the conditions in the magnetosphere, which challenge all proposed pulsar emission theories. PMID:23349288

  16. X-ray emission from cataclysmic variables with accretion disks. I - Hard X-rays. II - EUV/soft X-ray radiation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Patterson, J.; Raymond, J. C.

    1985-01-01

    Theoretical models explaining the hard-X-ray, soft-X-ray, and EUV emission of accretion-disk cataclysmic variables in terms of the disk boundary layer (DBL) are developed on the basis of a survey of the published observational data. The data are compared with model predictions in graphs for systems with high or low (greater than or less than 10-Pg/s) accretion rates. Good agreement is obtained both at low accretion rates, where an optically thin rarefied hot (Te = 10 to the 8th K) DBL radiates most of its energy as hard X-rays, and at high accretion rates, where an optically thick 100,000-K DBL radiates most of its energy in the EUV and as soft X-rays. Detailed analysis of the old nova V603 Aql suggests that previous models predicting more detections of soft-X-ray/EUV emissions from thick-DBL objects (Ferland et al., 1982) used inappropriate dwarf masses, interstellar column densities, or classical-nova space densities.

  17. X-ray observations of XSS J12270-4859 in a new low state: A transformation to a disk-free rotation-powered pulsar binary

    SciTech Connect

    Bogdanov, Slavko; Patruno, Alessandro; Archibald, Anne M.; Bassa, Cees; Hessels, Jason W. T.; Janssen, Gemma H.; Stappers, Ben W.

    2014-07-01

    We present XMM-Newton and Chandra observations of the low-mass X-ray binary XSS J12270-4859, which experienced a dramatic decline in optical/X-ray brightness at the end of 2012, indicative of the disappearance of its accretion disk. In this new state, the system exhibits previously absent orbital-phase-dependent, large-amplitude X-ray modulations with a decline in flux at superior conjunction. The X-ray emission remains predominantly non-thermal but with an order of magnitude lower mean luminosity and significantly harder spectrum relative to the previous high flux state. This phenomenology is identical to the behavior of the radio millisecond pulsar (MSP) binary PSR J1023+0038 in the absence of an accretion disk, where the X-ray emission is produced in an intra-binary shock driven by the pulsar wind. This further demonstrates that XSS J12270-4859 no longer has an accretion disk and has transformed to a full-fledged eclipsing 'redback' system that hosts an active rotation-powered MSP. There is no evidence for diffuse X-ray emission associated with the binary that may arise due to outflows or a wind nebula. An extended source situated 1.'5 from XSS J12270-4859 is unlikely to be associated, and is probably a previously uncataloged galaxy cluster.

  18. Disentangling X-Ray Emission Processes in Vela-Like Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaensler, Bryan; Mushotzky, Richard (Technical Monitor)

    2003-01-01

    We present a deep observation with the X-Ray Multimirror Mission of PSR B1823-13, a young pulsar with similar properties to the Vela pulsar. We detect two components to the X-ray emission associated with PSR B1823-13: an elongated core of extent 30 min immediately surrounding the pulsar embedded in a fainter, diffuse component of emission 5 sec in extent, seen only on the southern side of the pulsar. The pulsar itself is not detected, either as a point source or through its pulsations. Both components of the X-ray emission are well fitted by a power-law spectrum, with photon index Gamma approx. 1.6 and X-ray luminosity (0.5-10 keV) L(sub X) approx. 9 x 10(exp 32) ergs/s for the core and Gamma approx. 2.3 and L(sub X) approx. 3 x 10(exp 33) ergs/s for the diffuse emission, for a distance of 4 kpc. We interpret both components of emission as corresponding to a pulsar wind nebula, which we designate G18.0-0.7. We argue that the core region represents the wind termination shock of this nebula, while the diffuse component indicates the shocked downstream wind. We propose that the asymmetric morphology of the diffuse emission with respect to the pulsar is the result of a reverse shock from an associated supernova remnant, which has compressed and distorted the pulsar-powered nebula. Such an interaction might be typical for pulsars at this stage in their evolution. The associated supernova remnant is not detected directly, most likely being too faint to be seen in existing X-ray and radio observations.

  19. The effect of vacuum birefringence on the polarization of X-ray binaries and pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Novick, R.; Weisskopf, M. C.; Angel, J. R. P.; Sutherland, P. G.

    1977-01-01

    In a strong magnetic field the vacuum becomes birefringent. This effect is especially important for pulsars at X-ray wavelengths. Any polarized X-ray emission from the surface of a magnetic neutron star becomes depolarized as it propagates through the magnetic field. The soft X-ray emission from AM Her, believed to be a magnetic white dwarf, may show about one radian of phase retardation. In this case, circular polarization of the X-ray flux would be a characteristic signature of vacuum birefringence.

  20. Spectral variability in the X-ray pulsar GX 1+4

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Becker, R. H.; Boldt, E. A.; Holt, S. S.; Pravdo, S. H.; Rothschild, R. E.; Serlemitsos, P. J.; Swank, J. H.

    1976-01-01

    Observations of the galactic center region, hard X-ray source GX 1+4 by the GSFC X-ray spectroscopy experiment on OSO-8 confirm that GX 1+4 is a slow X-ray pulsar. The amount of absorption by cold matter in the spectrum of GX 1+4 varies significantly within a 24 hour period, behavior typical of many X-ray binary systems. The light curve for the pulsations from GX 1+4 appears to be energy dependent.

  1. ON THE X-RAY OUTBURSTS OF TRANSIENT ANOMALOUS X-RAY PULSARS AND SOFT GAMMA-RAY REPEATERS

    SciTech Connect

    Cal Latin-Small-Letter-Dotless-I skan, Sirin; Ertan, Uenal

    2012-10-20

    We show that the X-ray outburst light curves of four transient anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs) and soft gamma-ray repeaters (SGRs), namely, XTE J1810-197, SGR 0501+4516, SGR 1627-41, and CXOU J164710.2-455216, can be produced by the fallback disk model that was also applied to the outburst light curves of persistent AXPs and SGRs in our earlier work. The model solves the diffusion equation for the relaxation of a disk that has been pushed back by a soft gamma-ray burst. The sets of main disk parameters used for these transient sources are very similar to each other and to those employed in our earlier models of persistent AXPs and SGRs. There is a characteristic difference between the X-ray outburst light curves of transient and persistent sources. This can be explained by the differences in the disk surface density profiles of the transient and persistent sources in quiescence indicated by their quiescent X-ray luminosities. Our results imply that a viscous disk instability operating at a critical temperature in the range of {approx}1300-2800 K is a common property of all fallback disks around AXPs and SGRs. The effect of the instability is more pronounced and starts earlier for the sources with lower quiescent luminosities, which leads to the observable differences in the X-ray enhancement light curves of transient and persistent sources. A single active disk model with the same basic disk parameters can account for the enhancement phases of both transient and persistent AXPs and SGRs. We also present a detailed parameter study to show the effects of disk parameters on the evolution of the X-ray luminosity of AXPs and SGRs in the X-ray enhancement phases.

  2. Discovery of SXP 265, a Be/X-ray binary pulsar in the Wing of the Small Magellanic Cloud

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sturm, R.; Haberl, F.; Vasilopoulos, G.; Bartlett, E. S.; Maggi, P.; Rau, A.; Greiner, J.; Udalski, A.

    2014-11-01

    We identify a new candidate for a Be/X-ray binary in the XMM-Newton slew survey and archival Swift observations that is located in the transition region of the Wing of the Small Magellanic Cloud and the Magellanic Bridge. We investigated and classified this source with follow-up XMM-Newton and optical observations. We model the X-ray spectra and search for periodicities and variability in the X-ray observations and the Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment I-band light curve. The optical counterpart has been classified spectroscopically, with data obtained at the South African Astronomical Observatory 1.9 m telescope, and photometrically, with data obtained using the Gamma-ray Burst Optical Near-ir Detector at the MPG 2.2 m telescope. The X-ray spectrum is typical of a high-mass X-ray binary with an accreting neutron star. We detect X-ray pulsations, which reveal a neutron-star spin period of Ps = (264.516 ± 0.014) s. The source likely shows a persistent X-ray luminosity of a few 1035 erg s-1 and in addition type-I outbursts that indicate an orbital period of ˜146 d. A periodicity of 0.867 d, found in the optical light curve, can be explained by non-radial pulsations of the Be star. We identify the optical counterpart and classify it as a B1-2II-IVe star. This confirms SXP 265 as a new Be/X-ray binary pulsar originating in the tidal structure between the Magellanic Clouds.

  3. X-rays from radio pulsars - The detection of PSR 1055-52

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cheng, A. F.; Helfand, D. J.

    1983-01-01

    The short-period pulsar PSR 1055-52 has been detected as a soft X-ray source in the course of an Einstein Observatory survey of radio pulsars. Its X-ray to radio luminosity ratio is about 10,000, although the X-rays are not modulated at the neutron star's rotation frequency. High spatial resolution observations suggest that a significant fraction of the emission comes from an extended region surrounding the pulsar. Several possible scenarios for the origin of both point and extended X-ray emission from isolated neutron stars are investigated: radiation from the hot stellar surface, from hot polar caps, and from an optically thick atmosphere, as well as from a circumstellar nebula emitting thermal bremsstrahlung or synchrotron radiation. It is concluded that the spatial, spectral, and temporal characteristics of this source are most consistent with a model in which relativistic particles generated by the pulsar are radiating synchrotron X-rays in the surrounding magnetic field; i.e., that PSR 1055 is embedded in a mini-Crab nebula. Observational tests of this hypothesis are suggested, and the implications of this result for pulsar evolution are briefly discussed.

  4. X-ray jets from B2224+65: A Middle-aged Pulsar's New Trick

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Q. Daniel; Johnson, Seth

    2015-01-01

    Pulsars, though typically not aged ones, are believed to be an important source of energetic cosmic rays. Therefore, it may not be too surprising to detect an X-ray jet associated with the middle-aged radio/X-ray pulsar B2224+65, which is well known for its very high proper motion and its trailing ``Guitar Nebula''. Most unexpected, however, is that this jet is offset from its proper motion direction by 118 degree. Furthermore, an X-ray counter jet and a faint X-ray trail associated with the ``Guitar Nebula'' are now identified in the combined data set of three epoch Chandra observations with a total exposure of 200 ks. We are carrying out a detailed measurements of the X-ray spectral variation with time and across the jets and are critically testing scenarios proposed to explain this enigmatic phenomenon. The study should have strong implications for understanding the origin of cosmic rays, as well as similar linear nonthermal X-ray-emitting features that are associated with more distant pulsars, especially pulsar wind nebula candidates in the central 100 pc region of the Galaxy.

  5. A Comprehensive Spectral Analysis of the X-Ray Pulsar 4U 1907+09 from Two Observations with the Suzaku X-Ray Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rivers, Elizabeth; Markowitz, Alex; Pottschmidt, Katja; Roth, Stefanie; Barragan, Laura; Furst, Felix; Suchy, Slawomir; Kreykenbohm, Ingo; Wilms, Jorn; Rothschild, Richard

    2009-01-01

    We present results from two observations of the wind-accreting X-ray pulsar 4U 1907+09 using the Suzaku observatory, The broadband time-averaged spectrum allows us to examine the continuum emission of the source and the cyclotron resonance scattering feature at approx. 19 keV. Additionally, using the narrow CCD response of Suzaku near 6 ke V allows us to study in detail the Fe K bandpass and to quantify the Fe Kp line for this source for the first time. The source is absorbed by fully-covering material along the line of sight with a column density of N(sub H) approx. 2 x 10(exp 22)/sq cm, consistent with a wind accreting geometry, and a high Fe abundance (approx. 3 - 4 x solar). Time and phase-resolved analyses allow us to study variations in the source spectrum. In particular, dips found in the 2006 observation which are consistent with earlier observations occur in the hard X-ray bandpass, implying a variation of the whole continuum rather than occultation by intervening material, while a dip near the end of the 2007 observation occurs mainly in the lower energies implying an increase in NH along the line of sight, perhaps indicating clumpiness in the stellar wind

  6. A COMPREHENSIVE SPECTRAL ANALYSIS OF THE X-RAY PULSAR 4U 1907+09 FROM TWO OBSERVATIONS WITH THE SUZAKU X-RAY OBSERVATORY

    SciTech Connect

    Rivers, Elizabeth; Markowitz, Alex; Suchy, Slawomir; Rothschild, Richard; Pottschmidt, Katja; Roth, Stefanie; Barragan, Laura; Fuerst, Felix; Kreykenbohm, Ingo; Wilms, Joern

    2010-01-20

    We present results from two observations of the wind-accreting X-ray pulsar 4U 1907+09 using the Suzaku Observatory. The broadband time-averaged spectrum allows us to examine the continuum emission of the source and the cyclotron resonance scattering feature at approx19 keV. Additionally, using the narrow CCD response of Suzaku near 6 keV allows us to study in detail the Fe K bandpass and to quantify the Fe Kbeta line for this source for the first time. The source is absorbed by fully covering material along the line of sight with a column density of N{sub H} approx 2 x 10{sup 22} cm{sup -2}, consistent with a wind-accreting geometry, and a high Fe abundance (approx3-4 times solar). Time- and phase-resolved analyses allow us to study variations in the source spectrum. In particular, dips found in the 2006 observation which are consistent with earlier observations occur in the hard X-ray bandpass, implying a variation of the whole continuum rather than occultation by intervening material, while a dip near the end of the 2007 observation occurs mainly in the lower energies implying an increase in N{sub H} along the line of sight, perhaps indicating clumpiness in the stellar wind.

  7. Accretion disc atmospheres and winds in low-mass X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Díaz Trigo, M.; Boirin, L.

    2016-05-01

    In the last decade, X-ray spectroscopy has enabled a wealth of discoveries of photoionised absorbers in X-ray binaries. Studies of such accretion disc atmospheres and winds are of fundamental importance to understand accretion processes and possible feedback mechanisms to the environment. In this work, we review the current observational state and theoretical understanding of accretion disc atmospheres and winds in low-mass X-ray binaries, focusing on the wind launching mechanisms and on the dependence on accretion state. We conclude with issues that deserve particular attention.

  8. A FAST X-RAY DISK WIND IN THE TRANSIENT PULSAR IGR J17480-2446 IN TERZAN 5

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, Jon M.; Maitra, Dipankar; Cackett, Edward M.; Bhattacharyya, Sudip; Strohmayer, Tod E.

    2011-04-10

    Accretion disk winds are revealed in Chandra gratings spectra of black holes. The winds are hot and highly ionized (typically composed of He-like and H-like charge states) and show modest blueshifts. Similar line spectra are sometimes seen in 'dipping' low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs), which are likely viewed edge-on; however, that absorption is tied to structures in the outer disk, and blueshifts are not typically observed. Here, we report the detection of blueshifted He-like Fe XXV (3100 {+-} 400 km s{sup -1}) and H-like Fe XXVI (1000 {+-} 200 km s{sup -1}) absorption lines in a Chandra/HETG spectrum of the transient pulsar and LMXB IGR J17480-2446 in Terzan 5. These features indicate a disk wind with at least superficial similarities to those observed in stellar-mass black holes. The wind does not vary strongly with numerous weak X-ray bursts or flares. A broad Fe K emission line is detected in the spectrum, and fits with different line models suggest that the inner accretion disk in this system may be truncated. If the stellar magnetic field truncates the disk, a field strength of B= (0.7-4.0)x10{sup 9} G is implied, which is in line with estimates based on X-ray timing techniques. We discuss our findings in the context of accretion flows onto neutron stars and stellar-mass black holes.

  9. Quiescent emission in accreting neutron star transients: comparing Cen X-4 and the transitional millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chakrabarty, Deepto

    2016-07-01

    Many accreting neutron star in low-mass X-ray binaries are transient X-ray sources, undergoing bright X-ray outbursts lasting days to weeks alternating with long quiescent intervals lasting months to years. The origin of their faint quiescent power-law X-ray emission has been a longstanding question, with theorists primarily debating between Comptonization and synchrotron shock models. However, recent NuSTAR observations of the nearby source Cen X-4 unexpectedly revealed a bremsstrahlung origin for the quiescent hard X-ray component. I will discuss the implications of this result, and will also compare Cen X-4 with the "transitional" millisecond pulsars, which exhibit markedly different behavior at comparable X-ray luminosities.

  10. ORIGIN OF INTERMITTENT ACCRETION-POWERED X-RAY OSCILLATIONS IN NEUTRON STARS WITH MILLISECOND SPIN PERIODS

    SciTech Connect

    Lamb, Frederick K.; Boutloukos, Stratos; Van Wassenhove, Sandor; Chamberlain, Robert T.; Lo, Ka Ho; Coleman Miller, M.

    2009-11-01

    We have shown previously that many of the properties of persistent accretion-powered millisecond pulsars can be understood if their X-ray emitting areas are near their spin axes and move as the accretion rate and structure of the inner disk vary. Here, we show that this 'nearly aligned moving spot model' may also explain the intermittent accretion-powered pulsations that have been detected in three weakly magnetic accreting neutron stars. We show that movement of the emitting area from very close to the spin axis to approx10 deg. away can increase the fractional rms amplitude from approx<0.5%, which is usually undetectable with current instruments, to a few percent, which is easily detectable. The second harmonic of the spin frequency usually would not be detected, in agreement with observations. The model produces intermittently detectable oscillations for a range of emitting area sizes and beaming patterns, stellar masses and radii, and viewing directions. Intermittent oscillations are more likely in stars that are more compact. In addition to explaining the sudden appearance of accretion-powered millisecond oscillations in some neutron stars with millisecond spin periods, the model explains why accretion-powered millisecond oscillations are relatively rare and predicts that the persistent accretion-powered millisecond oscillations of other stars may become undetectable for brief intervals. It suggests why millisecond oscillations are frequently detected during the X-ray bursts of some neutron stars but not others and suggests mechanisms that could explain the occasional temporal association of intermittent accretion-powered oscillations with thermonuclear X-ray bursts.

  11. Discovery of X-Ray Emission from the Crab Pulsar at Pulse Minimum

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tennant, Allyn F.; Becker, Werner; Juda, Michael; Elsner, Ronald F.; Kolodziejczak, Jeffery J.; Murray, Stephen S.; ODell, Stephen L.; Paerels, Frits; Swartz, Douglas A.

    2001-01-01

    The Chandra X-Ray Observatory observed the Crab pulsar using the Low-Energy Transmission Grating with the High-Resolution Camera. Time-resolved zeroth-order images reveal that the pulsar emits X-rays at all pulse phases. Analysis of the flux at minimum - most likely non-thermal in origin - places an upper limit (T(sub infinity) < 2.1 MK) on the surface temperature of the underlying neutron star. In addition, analysis of the pulse profile establishes that the error in the Chandra-determined absolute time is quite small, -0.2 +/- 0.1 ms.

  12. Discovery of X-Ray Emission from the Crab Pulsar at Pulse Minimum

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tennant, Allyn F.; Becker, Werner; Juda, Michael X.; Elsner, Ronald F.; Kolodziejczak, Jeffery J.; Murray, Stephen S.; ODell, Stephen L.; Paerels, Frits; Swartz, Douglas A.; Shibazaki, Noriaki; Weisskopf, Martin C.; Rose, M. Franklin (Technical Monitor)

    1999-01-01

    The Chandra X-ray Observatory observed the Crab Nebula and Pulsar using the Low-Energy Transmission Grating (LETG) with the High-Resolution Camera (HRC). Time-resolved zeroth-order images reveal that the pulsar emits x rays at all pulse phases. Analysis of the flux at minimum -- most likely nonthermal in origin -- places an upper limit (T(sub infinity) < 2.1 MK) on the surface temperature of the underlying neutron star. In addition, analysis of the pulse profile appears to confirm the absolute timing of the Observatory to within about 0.2 ms.

  13. Faint X-Ray Structure in the Crab Pulsar Wind Nebula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seward, F. D.; Tucker, W. H.; Fesen, R. A.

    2006-12-01

    We report on a Chandra observation of the Crab Nebula that gives the first clear view of the faint boundary of the Crab's X-ray-emitting pulsar wind nebula. There is structure in all directions. Fingers, loops, bays, and the south pulsar jet all indicate that either filamentary material or the magnetic field is controlling the relativistic electrons. In general, spectra soften as distance from the pulsar increases but do not change rapidly along linear features. This is particularly true for the pulsar jet. The termination of the jet is abrupt; the east side is close to an [O III] optical filament, which may be blocking propagation on this side. We argue that linear features have ordered magnetic fields and that the structure is determined by the synchrotron lifetime of particles diffusing perpendicular and parallel to the magnetic field. We find no significant evidence for thermal X-rays inside the filamentary envelope.

  14. X-RAY PULSATIONS FROM THE RADIO-QUIET GAMMA-RAY PULSAR IN CTA 1

    SciTech Connect

    Caraveo, P. A.; De Luca, A.; Marelli, M.; Bignami, G. F.; Ray, P. S.; Saz Parkinson, P. M.; Kanbach, G.

    2010-12-10

    Prompted by the Fermi-LAT discovery of a radio-quiet gamma-ray pulsar inside the CTA 1 supernova remnant, we obtained a 130 ks XMM-Newton observation to assess the timing behavior of this pulsar. Exploiting both the unprecedented photon harvest and the contemporary Fermi-LAT timing measurements, a 4.7{sigma} single-peak pulsation is detected, making PSR J0007+7303 the second example, after Geminga, of a radio-quiet gamma-ray pulsar also seen to pulsate in X-rays. Phase-resolved spectroscopy shows that the off-pulse portion of the light curve is dominated by a power-law, non-thermal spectrum, while the X-ray peak emission appears to be mainly of thermal origin, probably from a polar cap heated by magnetospheric return currents, pointing to a hot spot varying throughout the pulsar rotation.

  15. Chandra Imaging of the X-Ray Nebula Powered by Pulsar B1509-58

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaensler, B. M.; Arons, J.; Kaspi, V. M.; Pivovaroff, M. J.; Kawai, N.; Tamura, K.

    2002-04-01

    We present observations with the Chandra X-Ray Observatory of the pulsar wind nebula (PWN) powered by the energetic young pulsar B1509-58. These data confirm the complicated morphology of the system indicated by previous observations, and in addition reveal several new components to the nebula. The overall PWN shows a clear symmetry axis oriented at a position angle 150deg+/-5deg (north through east), which we argue corresponds to the pulsar spin axis. We show that a previously identified radio feature matches well with the overall extent of the X-ray PWN, and propose the former as the long-sought radio nebula powered by the pulsar. We further identify a bright collimated feature, at least 4' long, lying along the nebula's main symmetry axis; we interpret this feature as a physical outflow from the pulsar, and infer a velocity for this jet of greater than 0.2c. The lack of any observed counterjet implies that the pulsar spin axis is inclined at ~30° to the line of sight, contrary to previous estimates made from lower resolution data. We also identify a variety of compact features close to the pulsar. A pair of semicircular X-ray arcs lie 17" and 30" to the north of the pulsar; the latter arc shows a highly polarized radio counterpart. We show that these features can be interpreted as ion-compression wisps in a particle-dominated equatorial flow, and use their properties to infer a ratio of electromagnetic to particle energy in pairs at the wind shock σ~0.005, similar to that seen in the Crab Nebula. We further identify several compact knots seen very close to the pulsar; we use these to infer σ<0.003 at a separation from the pulsar of 0.1 pc.

  16. Orbital decay and evidence of disk formation in the x-ray binary pulsar OAO 1657-415

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jenke, Peter

    2012-07-01

    OAO 1657-415 is an eclipsing X-ray binary wind-fed pulsar that has exhibited smooth spin-up/spin-down episodes and has undergone several torque reversals throughout its long history of observation. We present a frequency history spanning nearly 19 years of observations from the Burst and Transient Source Experiment (CGRO/BATSE) and from the Gamma-Ray Burst Monitor (Fermi/GBM). The analysis suggests two modes of accretion: one resulting in steady spin-up during which we believe a stable accretion disk is present and one that results in what appears to be a random walk in spin frequency where an unstable accretion disk forms alternating in direction ("flip flop"). Orbital elements of the pulsar system are determined at several intervals throughout this history. With these ephemerides, statistically significant orbital decay (\\dot{P}/P =(-3.40 ±0.15)×10^{-6} yr^{-1}) is established suggesting a transition between wind-fed and disk-mediated accretion.

  17. V1647 Orionis: The X-Ray Evolution of a Pre-Main-Sequence Accretion Burst

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kastner, Joel H.; Richmond, Michael; Grosso, Nicolas; Weintraub, David A.; Simon, Theodore; Henden, Arne; Hamaguchi, Kenji; Frank, Adam; Ozawa, Hideki

    2006-09-01

    We present Chandra X-Ray Observatory monitoring observations of the recent accretion outburst displayed by the pre-main-sequence (pre-MS) star V1647 Ori. The X-ray observations were obtained over a period beginning prior to outburst onset in late 2003 and continuing through its apparent cessation in late 2005, and demonstrate that the mean flux of the spatially coincident X-ray source closely tracked the near-infrared luminosity of V1647 Ori throughout its eruption. We find negligible likelihood that the correspondence between X-ray and infrared light curves over this period was the result of multiple X-ray flares unrelated to the accretion burst. The recent Chandra data confirm that the X-ray spectrum of V1647 Ori hardened during outburst, relative both to its preoutburst state and to the X-ray spectra of nearby pre-MS stars in the L1630 cloud. We conclude that the observed changes in the X-ray emission from V1647 Ori over the course of its 2003-2005 eruption were generated by a sudden increase and subsequent decline in its accretion rate. These results for V1647 Ori indicate that the flux of hard X-ray emission from erupting low-mass, pre-MS stars, and the duration and intensity of such eruptions, reflect the degree to which star-disk magnetic fields are reorganized before and during major accretion events.

  18. Dynamic effects on cyclotron scattering in pulsar accretion columns

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brainerd, J. J.; Meszaros, P.

    1991-01-01

    A resonant scattering model for photon reprocessing in a pulsar accretion column is presented. The accretion column is optically thin to Thomson scattering and optically thick to resonant scattering at the cyclotron frequency. Radiation from the neutron star surface propagates freely through the column until the photon energy equals the local cyclotron frequency, at which point the radiation is scattered, much of it back toward the star. The radiation pressure in this regime is insufficient to stop the infall. Some of the scattered radiation heats the stellar surface around the base of the column, which adds a softer component to the spectrum. The partial blocking by the accretion column of X-rays from the surface produces a fan beam emission pattern. X-rays above the surface cyclotron frequency freely escape and are characterized by a pencil beam. Gravitational light bending produces a pencil beam pattern of column-scattered radiation in the antipodal direction, resulting in a strongly angle-dependent cyclotron feature.

  19. A Sequence of Outbursts from the Transient X-Ray Pulsar GS 0834-430

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson, Colleen A.; Finger, Mark H.; Harmon, B.Alan; Scott, D. Matthew; Wilson, Robert B.; Bildsten, Lars; Chakrabarty, Deepto; Prince, Thomas A.

    1997-01-01

    GS 0834-430, a 12.3 s accretion-powered pulsar, has been observed in seven outbursts with the BATSE large-area detectors on the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory. The first five outbursts observed by BATSE occurred at intervals of about 107 days, while the final two outbursts were separated by about 140 days. The photon energy spectrum, measured by Earth occultation in the 20 100 keV band, can be fitted by a power law with photon index alpha approximately equals -3.7 or by an exponential spectrum with temperature kT approximately equals 15 keV, with some variations within outbursts. The source has a low pulse fraction, less than or equal to 0.15 in the 20-50 keV band. We have observed significant temporal and energy-dependent variations in epoch folded pulse profiles. Because the intrinsic torque effects for this system are at least comparable to orbital effects, pulse timing analysis did not produce a unique orbital solution. However, confidence regions for the orbital elements yielded the following 1 sigma limits: orbital period P(sub orb) = 105.8 +/- 0.4 days and eccentricity 0.10 less than or approximately equals epsilon less than or approximately equals 0.17. GS 0834-430 is most likely a Be/X-ray binary.

  20. Spectral and temporal properties of the X-ray pulsar SMC X-1 at hard X-rays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kunz, M.; Gruber, D. E.; Kendziorra, E .; Kretschmar, P.; Maisack, M.; Mony, B.; Staubert, R.; Doebereiner, S.; Englhauser, J.; Pietsch, W.

    1993-01-01

    The binary X-ray pulsar SMC X- 1 has been observed at hard X-rays with the High Energy X-Ray Experiment (HEXE) on nine occasions between Nov. 1987 and March 1989. A thin thermal bremsstrahlung fit to the phase averaged spectrum yields a plasma temperature (14.4 +/- 1.3) keV and a luminosity above (1.1 +/- 0.1) x 10 exp 38 erg/s in the 20-80 keV band. Pulse period values have been established for three observations, confirming the remarkably stable spin-up trend of SMC X-1. In one of the three observations the pulse profile was seen to deviate from a dominant double pulsation, while at the same time the pulsed fraction was unusually large. For one observation we determined for the first time the pulsed fraction in narrow energy bands. It increases with photon energy from about 20 percent up to over 60 percent in the energy range from 20 to 80 keV.

  1. Emission lines from X-ray-heated accretion disks in low-mass X-ray binaries

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ko, Yuan-Kuen; Kallman, Timothy R.

    1994-01-01

    We investigate the structure of accretion disks illuminated by X-rays from a central compact object in a binary system. X-rays can photoionize the upper atmosphere of the disk and form an accretion disk corona (ADC) where emission lines can form. We construct a model to calculate the vertical structure and the emission spectrum of the ADC with parameters appropriate to low-mass X-ray binaries. These models are made by nonlocal thermodynamic equilibrium calculations of ion and level populations and include a large number of atomic processes for 10 cosmically abundant elements. Transfer of radiation is treated by using the escape probability formalism. The vertical temperature profile of the ADC consists of a Compton-heated region and a mid-T zone where the temperature is approximately 10(exp 6) K. A thermal instability occurs close to the disk photosphere and causes the temperature of the ADC to drop abruptly from 10(exp 6) K to several times 10(exp 4) K. The emission spectrum in the optical, ultraviolet, extreme ultraviolet, and X-ray range is discussed and compared with the observations.

  2. X-ray observations of PSR B0355+54 and its pulsar wind nebula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGowan, Katherine E.; Vestrand, W. Thomas; Kennea, Jamie A.; Zane, Silvia; Cropper, Mark; Córdova, France A.

    2007-04-01

    We present X-ray data of the middle-aged radio pulsar PSR B0355+54. The XMM-Newton and Chandra observations show not only emission from the pulsar itself, but also compact diffuse emission extending ˜50″ in the opposite direction to the pulsar’s proper motion. Our analysis also indicates the presence of fainter diffuse emission extending ˜5‧ from the point source. The morphology of the diffuse component is similar to the ram-pressure confined pulsar wind nebulae detected for other sources. We find that the compact diffuse component is well-fitted with a power-law, with an index that is consistent with the values found for other pulsar wind nebulae. The core emission from the pulsar can be characterized with a thermal plus power-law fit, with the thermal emission most likely originating in a hot polar cap.

  3. The pulsar B2224+65 and its jets: a two epoch X-ray analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, S. P.; Wang, Q. D.

    2010-10-01

    We present an X-ray morphological and spectroscopic study of the pulsar B2224+65 and its apparent jet-like X-ray features based on two epoch Chandra observations. The main X-ray feature, which shows a large directional offset from the ram-pressure confined pulsar wind nebula (Guitar nebula), is broader in apparent width and shows evidence for spectral hardening (at 95 per cent confidence) in the second epoch compared to the first. Furthermore, the sharp leading edge of the feature is found to have a proper motion consistent with that of the pulsar (~180 mas yr-1). The combined data set also provides evidence for the presence of a counter feature, albeit substantially fainter and shorter than the main one. Additional spectral trends along the major and minor axes of the feature are only marginally detected in the two epoch data, including softening counter to the direction of proper motion. Possible explanations for the X-ray features include diffuse energetic particles being confined by an organized ambient magnetic field as well as a simple ballistic jet interpretation; however, the former may have difficulty in explaining observed spectral trends between epochs and along the feature's major axis, whereas the latter may struggle to elucidate its linearity. Given the low counting statistics available in the two epoch observations, it remains difficult to determine a physical production scenario for these enigmatic X-ray emitting features with any certainty.

  4. SEXTANT X-Ray Pulsar Navigation Demonstration: Flight System and Test Results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Winternitz, Luke M. B.; Mitchell, Jason W.; Hassouneh, Munther A.; Valdez, Jennifer E.; Price, Samuel R.; Semper, Sean R.; Yu, Wayne H.; Ray, Paul S.; Wood, Kent S.; Arzoumanian, Zaven; Gendreau, Keith C.

    2016-01-01

    The Station Explorer for X-ray Timing and Navigation Technology (SEXTANT) is a technology demonstration enhancement to the Neutron-star Interior Composition Explorer (NICER) mission. NICER is a NASA Explorer Mission of Opportunity that will be hosted on the International Space Station (ISS). SEXTANT will, for the first time, demonstrate real-time, on-board X-ray Pulsar Navigation (XNAV), a significant milestone in the quest to establish a GPS-like navigation capability available throughout our Solar System and beyond. This paper gives an overview of the SEXTANT system architecture and describes progress prior to environmental testing of the NICER flight instrument. It provides descriptions and development status of the SEXTANT flight software and ground system, as well as detailed description and results from the flight software functional and performance testing within the highfidelity Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) X-ray Navigation Laboratory Testbed (GXLT) software and hardware simulation environment. Hardware-in-the-loop simulation results are presented, using the engineering model of the NICER timing electronics and the GXLT pulsar simulator-the GXLT precisely controls NASA GSFC's unique Modulated X-ray Source to produce X-rays that make the NICER detector electronics appear as if they were aboard the ISS viewing a sequence of millisecond pulsars.

  5. SEXTANT X-Ray Pulsar Navigation Demonstration: Flight System and Test Results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Winternitz, Luke; Mitchell, Jason W.; Hassouneh, Munther A.; Valdez, Jennifer E.; Price, Samuel R.; Semper, Sean R.; Yu, Wayne H.; Ray, Paul S.; Wood, Kent S.; Arzoumanian, Zaven; Gendreau, Keith C.

    2016-01-01

    The Station Explorer for X-ray Timing and Navigation Technology (SEXTANT) is a technology demonstration enhancement to the Neutron-star Interior Composition Explorer (NICER) mission. NICER is a NASA Explorer Mission of Opportunity that will be hosted on the International Space Station (ISS). SEXTANT will, for the first time, demonstrate real-time, on-board X-ray Pulsar Navigation (XNAV), a significant milestone in the quest to establish a GPS-like navigation capability available throughout our Solar System and beyond. This paper gives an overview of the SEXTANT system architecture and describes progress prior to environmental testing of the NICER flight instrument. It provides descriptions and development status of the SEXTANT flight software and ground system, as well as detailed description and results from the flight software functional and performance testing within the high-fidelity Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) X-ray Navigation Laboratory Testbed (GXLT) software and hardware simulation environment. Hardware-in-the-loop simulation results are presented, using the engineering model of the NICER timing electronics and the GXLT pulsar simulator-the GXLT precisely controls NASA GSFC's unique Modulated X-ray Source to produce X-rays that make the NICER detector electronics appear as if they were aboard the ISS viewing a sequence of millisecond pulsars

  6. Denoising of X-ray pulsar observed profile in the undecimated wavelet domain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xue, Meng-fan; Li, Xiao-ping; Fu, Ling-zhong; Liu, Xiu-ping; Sun, Hai-feng; Shen, Li-rong

    2016-01-01

    The low intensity of the X-ray pulsar signal and the strong X-ray background radiation lead to low signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of the X-ray pulsar observed profile obtained through epoch folding, especially when the observation time is not long enough. This signifies the necessity of denoising of the observed profile. In this paper, the statistical characteristics of the X-ray pulsar signal are studied, and a signal-dependent noise model is established for the observed profile. Based on this, a profile noise reduction method by performing a local linear minimum mean square error filtering in the un-decimated wavelet domain is developed. The detail wavelet coefficients are rescaled by multiplying their amplitudes by a locally adaptive factor, which is the local variance ratio of the noiseless coefficients to the noisy ones. All the nonstationary statistics needed in the algorithm are calculated from the observed profile, without a priori information. The results of experim! ents, carried out on simulated data obtained by the ground-based simulation system and real data obtained by Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer satellite, indicate that the proposed method is excellent in both noise suppression and preservation of peak sharpness, and it also clearly outperforms four widely accepted and used wavelet denoising methods, in terms of SNR, Pearson correlation coefficient and root mean square error.

  7. X-ray deficiency on strongly accreting T Tauri stars. Comparing Orion with Taurus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bustamante, I.; Merín, B.; Bouy, H.; Manara, C. F.; Ribas, Á.; Riviere-Marichalar, P.

    2016-03-01

    Context. Depending on whether a T Tauri star accretes material from its circumstellar disk or not, different X-ray emission properties can be found. The accretion shocks produce cool heating of the plasma, contributing to the soft X-ray emission from the star. Aims: Using X-ray data from the Chandra Orion Ultra-deep Project and accretion rates that were obtained with the Hubble Space Telescope/WFPC2 photometric measurements in the Orion Nebula Cluster (ONC), we studied the relation between the accretion processes and the X-ray emissions of a coherent sample of T Tauri sources in the region. Methods: We performed regression and correlation analyses of our sample of T Tauri stars between the X-ray parameters, stellar properties, and the accretion measurements. Results: We find that a clear anti-correlation is present between the residual X-ray luminosity and the accretion rates in our samples in Orion that is consistent with that found on the XMM-Newton Extended Survey of the Taurus molecular cloud (XEST) study. A considerable number of classified non-accreting sources show accretion rates comparable to those of classical T Tauri Stars (CTTS). Our data do not allow us to confirm the classification between classical and weak-line T Tauri stars (WTTS), and the number of WTTS in this work is small compared to the complete samples. Thus, we have used the entire samples as accretors in our analysis. We provide a catalog with X-ray luminosities (corrected from distance) and accretion measurements of an ONC T Tauri stars sample. Conclusions: Although Orion and Taurus display strong differences in their properties (total gas and dust mass, star density, strong irradiation from massive stars), we find that a similar relation between the residual X-ray emission and accretion rate is present in the Taurus molecular cloud and in the accreting samples from the ONC. The spread in the data suggests dependencies of the accretion rates and the X-ray luminosities other than the

  8. Broad-band spectroscopy of the transient X-ray binary pulsar KS 1947+300 during 2013 giant outburst: Detection of pulsating soft X-ray excess component

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Epili, Prahlad; Naik, Sachindra; Jaisawal, Gaurava K.

    2016-05-01

    We present the results obtained from detailed timing and spectral studies of the Be/X-ray binary pulsar KS 1947+300 during its 2013 giant outburst. We used data from Suzaku observations of the pulsar at two epochs, i.e. on 2013 October 22 (close to the peak of the outburst) and 2013 November 22. X-ray pulsations at ∼18.81 s were clearly detected in the light curves obtained from both observations. Pulse periods estimated during the outburst showed that the pulsar was spinning up. The pulse profile was found to be single-peaked up to ∼10 keV beyond which a sharp peak followed by a dip-like feature appeared at hard X-rays. The dip-like feature has been observed up to ∼70 keV. The 1–110 keV broad-band spectroscopy of both observations revealed that the best-fit model was comprised of a partially absorbed Negative and Positive power law with EXponential cutoff (NPEX) continuum model along with a blackbody component for the soft X-ray excess and two Gaussian functions at 6.4 and 6.7 keV for emission lines. Both the lines were identified as emission from neutral and He-like iron atoms. To fit the spectra, we included the previously reported cyclotron absorption line at 12.2 keV. From the spin-up rate, the magnetic field of the pulsar was estimated to be ∼1.2×1012 G and found to be comparable to that obtained from the detection of the cyclotron absorption feature. Pulse-phase resolved spectroscopy revealed the pulsating nature of the soft X-ray excess component in phase with the continuum flux. This confirms that the accretion column and/or accretion stream are the most probable regions of the soft X-ray excess emission in KS1947+300. The presence of the pulsating soft X-ray excess in phase with continuum emission may be the possible reason for not observing the dip at soft X-rays.

  9. Application of X-Ray Pulsar Navigation: A Characterization of the Earth Orbit Trade Space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yu, Wayne

    2016-01-01

    The potential for pulsars as a navigation source has been studied since their discovery in 1967. X-ray pulsar navigation (XNAV) is a celestial navigation system that uses the consistent timing nature of x-ray photons from milli-second pulsars (MSP) to perform space navigation. By comparing the detected arrival of x-ray photons to a reference database of expected pulsar lightcurve timing models, one can infer a range and range rate measurement based on light time delay. Much of the challenge of XNAV comes from the faint signal, availability, and distant nature of pulsars. This is a study of potential pulsar XNAV measurements to measure extended Kalman filter (EKF) tracking performance with a wide trade space of bounded Earth orbits, using a simulation of existing x-ray detector space hardware. An example of an x-ray detector for XNAV is the NASA Station Explorer for X-ray Timing and Navigation (SEXTANT) mission, a technology demonstration of XNAV set to perform on the International Space Station (ISS) in late 2016early 2017. XNAV hardware implementation is driven by trajectory and environmental influences which add noise to the x-ray pulse signal. In a closed Earth orbit, the radiation environment can exponentially increase the signal noise from x-ray pulsar sources, decreasing the quality and frequency of measurements. The SEXTANT mission in particular improves on the signal to noise ratio by focusing an array of 56 x-ray silicon drift detectors at one pulsar target at a time. This reduces timing glitches and other timing noise contributions from ambient x-ray sources to within a 100 nanosecond resolution. This study also considers the SEXTANT scheduling challenges inherent in a single target observation. Finally, as the navigation sources are now relatively inertial targets, XNAV measurements are also subject to periods of occultation from various celestial bodies. This study focuses on the characterization of these drivers in closed Earth orbits and is not a

  10. X-RAY SPECTROSCOPY OF THE HIGH-MASS X-RAY BINARY PULSAR CENTAURUS X-3 OVER ITS BINARY ORBIT

    SciTech Connect

    Naik, Sachindra; Ali, Zulfikar; Paul, Biswajit

    2011-08-20

    We present a comprehensive spectral analysis of the high-mass X-ray binary (HMXB) pulsar Centaurus X-3 with the Suzaku observatory covering nearly one orbital period. The light curve shows the presence of extended dips which are rarely seen in HMXBs. These dips are seen up to as high as {approx}40 keV. The pulsar spectra during the eclipse, out-of-eclipse, and dips are found to be well described by a partial covering power-law model with high-energy cutoff and three Gaussian functions for 6.4 keV, 6.7 keV, and 6.97 keV iron emission lines. The dips in the light curve can be explained by the presence of an additional absorption component with high column density and covering fraction, the values of which are not significant during the rest of the orbital phases. The iron line parameters during the dips and eclipse are significantly different compared to those during the rest of the observation. During the dips, the iron line intensities are found to be lesser by a factor of 2-3 with a significant increase in the line equivalent widths. However, the continuum flux at the corresponding orbital phase is estimated to be lesser by more than an order of magnitude. Similarities in the changes in the iron line flux and equivalent widths during the dips and eclipse segments suggest that the dipping activity in Cen X-3 is caused by an obscuration of the neutron star by dense matter, probably structures in the outer region of the accretion disk, as in the case of dipping low-mass X-ray binaries.

  11. Chandra Phase-Resolved X-Ray Spectroscopy of the Crab Pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weisskopf, Martin C.; ODell, Stephen L.; Paerels, Frits; Elsner, Ronald F.; Becker, Werner E.; Tennant, Allyn F.; Swartz, Douglas A.

    2003-01-01

    We present here the first phase-resolved study of the X-ray spectral properties of the Crab Pulsar that covers all pulse phases. The superb angular resolution of the Chandra X-ray Observatory enables distinguishing the pulsar from the surrounding nebulosity, even at pulse minimum. Analysis of the pulse-averaged spectrum measures interstellar photoelectric absorption and scattering by dust grains in the direction of the Crab Nebula. Analysis of the spectrum as a function of pulse phase measures the low-energy X-ray spectral index even at pulse minimum - albeit with large statistical uncertainty. The data are used to set a new upper limit to any thermal component.

  12. A NuSTAR Observation of the Gamma-ray-emitting X-ray Binary and Transitional Millisecond Pulsar Candidate 1RXS J154439.4–112820

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanov, Slavko

    2016-07-01

    I present a 40 ks Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array observation of the recently identified low-luminosity X-ray binary and transitional millisecond pulsar (tMSP) candidate 1RXS J154439.4‑112820, which is associated with the high-energy γ-ray source 3FGL J1544.6‑1125. The system is detected up to ˜30 keV with an extension of the same power-law spectrum and rapid large-amplitude variability between two flux levels observed in soft X-rays. These findings provide further evidence that 1RXS J154439.4‑112820 belongs to the same class of objects as the nearby bona fide tMSPs PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270‑4859 and therefore almost certainly hosts a millisecond pulsar accreting at low luminosity. I also examine the long-term accretion history of 1RXS J154439.4‑112820 based on archival optical, ultraviolet, X-ray, and γ-ray light curves covering approximately the past decade. Throughout this period, the source has maintained similar flux levels at all wavelengths, which is an indication that it has not experienced prolonged episodes of a non-accreting radio pulsar state but may spontaneously undergo such events in the future.

  13. A NuSTAR Observation of the Gamma-ray-emitting X-ray Binary and Transitional Millisecond Pulsar Candidate 1RXS J154439.4–112820

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanov, Slavko

    2016-07-01

    I present a 40 ks Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array observation of the recently identified low-luminosity X-ray binary and transitional millisecond pulsar (tMSP) candidate 1RXS J154439.4‑112820, which is associated with the high-energy γ-ray source 3FGL J1544.6‑1125. The system is detected up to ∼30 keV with an extension of the same power-law spectrum and rapid large-amplitude variability between two flux levels observed in soft X-rays. These findings provide further evidence that 1RXS J154439.4‑112820 belongs to the same class of objects as the nearby bona fide tMSPs PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270‑4859 and therefore almost certainly hosts a millisecond pulsar accreting at low luminosity. I also examine the long-term accretion history of 1RXS J154439.4‑112820 based on archival optical, ultraviolet, X-ray, and γ-ray light curves covering approximately the past decade. Throughout this period, the source has maintained similar flux levels at all wavelengths, which is an indication that it has not experienced prolonged episodes of a non-accreting radio pulsar state but may spontaneously undergo such events in the future.

  14. The dynamic X-ray nebula powered by the pulsar B1259-63

    SciTech Connect

    Kargaltsev, Oleg; Volkov, Igor; Hare, Jeremy; Pavlov, George G.; Durant, Martin

    2014-04-01

    We present observations of the eccentric γ-ray binary B1259-63/LS 2883 with the Chandra X-ray Observatory. The images reveal a variable, extended (about 4'', or ∼1000 times the binary orbit size) structure, which appears to be moving away from the binary with the velocity of 0.05 of the speed of light. The observed emission is interpreted as synchrotron radiation from relativistic particles supplied by the pulsar. However, the fast motion through the circumbinary medium would require the emitting cloud to be loaded with a large amount of baryonic matter. Alternatively, the extended emission can be interpreted as a variable extrabinary shock in the pulsar wind outflow launched near binary apastron. The resolved variable X-ray nebula provides an opportunity to probe pulsar winds and their interaction with stellar winds in a previously inaccessible way.

  15. Magnetospheric Geometry in Pulsar B1929+10 from Radio/X-ray Phase Alignment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Somer, A. L.; Backer, D. C.; Halpern, J. P.; Wang, F. Y.-H.

    1998-05-01

    We have conducted a study of two rotation-powered pulsars that emit at both radio and x-ray wavelengths, PSR B0531+21 and PSR B1929+10. Using absolute phase information, we have phase-aligned x-ray and radio profiles from these pulsars. Observations were done using the Green Bank 140ft telescope, and ASCA. The 0531+21 x-ray profile is sharp and lines up well with the radio profile confirming that the x-ray emission from this pulsar is magnetospheric in origin. The 1929+10 profile is approximately sinusoidal (Wang & Halpern, ApJ 4 82, L159) with the peak of the emission arriving 67+/- 23 degrees after the maximum in the radio emission. The controversy to which the PSR B1929+10 result adds fuel, is whether this ``inter"-pulsar, is an ``aligned" or ``orthogonal" rotator - describing the alignment of the magnetic axis to the rotation axis. Do the two peaks in the radio profile (the pulse and interpulse) come from a double crossing of a thin hollow cone nearly aligned with rotation axis (as in Lyne & Manchester, 1988, MNRAS, 234, 477; Phillips, 1990, ApJL, 361, L57; Blaskiewicz et al, 1991, ApJ 370, 643), or alternatively (as in Rankin and Rathnasree, 1998 preprint) do they come from from opposite poles of an ``orthogonal" rotator where the spin axis is perpendicular to the magnetic axis? The radio to x-ray alignment we find favors the former explanation: if the x-ray hot spot is the result of return currents to the surface from the outward current that generates radio emission, then in the ``double-crossing" model, the hot spot phase is expected to lie between the main pulse and interpulse as observed.

  16. Modeling the optical-X-ray accretion lag in LMC X-3: Insights into black-hole accretion physics

    SciTech Connect

    Steiner, James F.; McClintock, Jeffrey E.; Orosz, Jerome A.; Buxton, Michelle M.; Bailyn, Charles D.; Remillard, Ronald A.; Kara, Erin

    2014-03-10

    The X-ray persistence and characteristically soft spectrum of the black hole X-ray binary LMC X-3 make this source a touchstone for penetrating studies of accretion physics. We analyze a rich, ten-year collection of optical/infrared (OIR) time-series data in conjunction with all available contemporaneous X-ray data collected by the All-Sky Monitor and Proportional Counter Array detectors aboard the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer. A cross-correlation analysis reveals an X-ray lag of ≈2 weeks. Motivated by this result, we develop a model that reproduces the complex OIR light curves of LMC X-3. The model is comprised of three components of emission: stellar light, accretion luminosity from the outer disk inferred from the time-lagged X-ray emission, and light from the X-ray-heated star and outer disk. Using the model, we filter a strong noise component out of the ellipsoidal light curves and derive an improved orbital period for the system. Concerning accretion physics, we find that the local viscous timescale in the disk increases with the local mass accretion rate; this in turn implies that the viscosity parameter α decreases with increasing luminosity. Finally, we find that X-ray heating is a strong function of X-ray luminosity below ≈50% of the Eddington limit, while above this limit X-ray heating is heavily suppressed. We ascribe this behavior to the strong dependence of the flaring in the disk upon X-ray luminosity, concluding that for luminosities above ≈50% of Eddington, the star lies fully in the shadow of the disk.

  17. The 1997 event in the Crab Pulsar in X-rays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vivekanand, M.

    2016-02-01

    Context. In October 1997, radio pulses from the Crab Pulsar underwent abnormal delay. This was reported by two radio observatories, both of which explained this frequency dependent and time varying delay as being due to refractive effects of ionized shells in the Crab Nebula. Both groups also noted that, curiously and confusingly coincident with the frequency dependent delay, the Crab Pulsar also underwent an unusual slowing down, which they believed to be unrelated to the Crab Nebula and instead intrinsic to the Crab Pulsar, resulting in an additional delay that was frequency independent. However, it now appears that one of the groups attributes the frequency independent delay also to refractive effects. Aims: This work aims to verify whether at least a part of the frequency independent delay is indeed due to intrinsic slowing down of the Crab Pulsar. Methods: Timing analysis of the Crab Pulsar's October 1997 event has been done in X-rays, which are not delayed by the refractive and diffractive effects that affect radio waves; at X-rays only the intrinsic slowing down should contribute to any observed delay. Data mainly from the PCA instrument aboard the RXTE satellite have been used, along with a small amount of data from the PDS instrument aboard the BeppoSAX satellite. Results: Analysis of the X-ray data, using the very accurate reference timing model derived at radio frequencies, strongly supports the intrinsic slowing down hypothesis. Analysis using the reference timing model derived self-consistently from the limited X-ray data, which is less accurate, is not completely unambiguous regarding the above two hypotheses, but provides reasonable support for the intrinsic slowing down hypothesis. Conclusions: A significant fraction of the frequency independent delay during the October 1997 event is indeed due to intrinsic slowing down of the Crab Pulsar.

  18. A CHANDRA X-RAY OBSERVATION OF THE BINARY MILLISECOND PULSAR PSR J1023+0038

    SciTech Connect

    Bogdanov, Slavko; Archibald, Anne M.; Kaspi, Victoria M.; Hessels, Jason W. T.; Lorimer, Duncan; McLaughlin, Maura A.; Ransom, Scott M.; Stairs, Ingrid H.

    2011-12-01

    We present a Chandra X-Ray Observatory ACIS-S variability, spectroscopy, and imaging study of the peculiar binary containing the millisecond pulsar J1023+0038. The X-ray emission from the system exhibits highly significant (12.5{sigma}) large-amplitude (factor of two to three) orbital variability over the five consecutive orbits covered by the observation, with a pronounced decline in the flux at all energies at superior conjunction. This can be naturally explained by a partial geometric occultation by the secondary star of an X-ray-emitting intrabinary shock, produced by the interaction of outflows from the two stars. The depth and duration of the eclipse imply that the intrabinary shock is localized near or at the surface of the companion star and close to the inner Lagrangian point. The energetics of the shock favor a magnetically dominated pulsar wind that is focused into the orbital plane, requiring close alignment of the pulsar spin and orbital angular momentum axes. The X-ray spectrum consists of a dominant non-thermal component and at least one thermal component, likely originating from the heated pulsar polar caps, although a portion of this emission may be from an optically thin 'corona'. We find no evidence for extended emission due to a pulsar wind nebula or bow shock down to a limiting luminosity of L{sub X} {approx}< 3.6 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 29} erg s{sup -1} (0.3-8 keV), {approx}< 7 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -6} of the pulsar spin-down luminosity, for a distance of 1.3 kpc and an assumed power-law spectrum with photon index {Gamma} = 1.5.

  19. Clumpy wind accretion in supergiant neutron star high mass X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bozzo, E.; Oskinova, L.; Feldmeier, A.; Falanga, M.

    2016-04-01

    The accretion of the stellar wind material by a compact object represents the main mechanism powering the X-ray emission in classical supergiant high mass X-ray binaries and supergiant fast X-ray transients. In this work we present the first attempt to simulate the accretion process of a fast and dense massive star wind onto a neutron star, taking into account the effects of the centrifugal and magnetic inhibition of accretion ("gating") due to the spin and magnetic field of the compact object. We made use of a radiative hydrodynamical code to model the nonstationary radiatively driven wind of an O-B supergiant star and then place a neutron star characterized by a fixed magnetic field and spin period at a certain distance from the massive companion. Our calculations follow, as a function of time (on a total timescale of several hours), the transitions of the system through all different accretion regimes that are triggered by the intrinsic variations in the density and velocity of the nonstationary wind. The X-ray luminosity released by the system is computed at each time step by taking into account the relevant physical processes occurring in the different accretion regimes. Synthetic lightcurves are derived and qualitatively compared with those observed from classical supergiant high mass X-ray binaries and supergiant fast X-ray transients. Although a number of simplifications are assumed in these calculations, we show that taking into account the effects of the centrifugal and magnetic inhibition of accretion significantly reduces the average X-ray luminosity expected for any neutron star wind-fed binary. The present model calculations suggest that long spin periods and stronger magnetic fields are favored in order to reproduce the peculiar behavior of supergiant fast X-ray transients in the X-ray domain.

  20. Clumpy wind accretion in supergiant neutron star high mass X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bozzo, E.; Oskinova, L.; Feldmeier, A.; Falanga, M.

    2016-05-01

    The accretion of the stellar wind material by a compact object represents the main mechanism powering the X-ray emission in classical supergiant high mass X-ray binaries and supergiant fast X-ray transients. In this work we present the first attempt to simulate the accretion process of a fast and dense massive star wind onto a neutron star, taking into account the effects of the centrifugal and magnetic inhibition of accretion ("gating") due to the spin and magnetic field of the compact object. We made use of a radiative hydrodynamical code to model the nonstationary radiatively driven wind of an O-B supergiant star and then place a neutron star characterized by a fixed magnetic field and spin period at a certain distance from the massive companion. Our calculations follow, as a function of time (on a total timescale of several hours), the transitions of the system through all different accretion regimes that are triggered by the intrinsic variations in the density and velocity of the nonstationary wind. The X-ray luminosity released by the system is computed at each time step by taking into account the relevant physical processes occurring in the different accretion regimes. Synthetic lightcurves are derived and qualitatively compared with those observed from classical supergiant high mass X-ray binaries and supergiant fast X-ray transients. Although a number of simplifications are assumed in these calculations, we show that taking into account the effects of the centrifugal and magnetic inhibition of accretion significantly reduces the average X-ray luminosity expected for any neutron star wind-fed binary. The present model calculations suggest that long spin periods and stronger magnetic fields are favored in order to reproduce the peculiar behavior of supergiant fast X-ray transients in the X-ray domain.

  1. The White Dwarf Mass and the Accretion Rate of Recurrent Novae: An X-ray Perspective

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mukai, Koji; Sokoloski, Jennifer L.; Nelson, Thomas; Luna, Gerardo J. M.

    2011-01-01

    We present recent results of quiescent X-ray observations of recurrent novae (RNe) and related objects. Several RNe are luminous hard X-ray sources in quiescence, consistent with accretion onto a near Chandrasekhar mass white dwarf. Detection of similar hard X-ray emissions in old novae and other cataclysmic variables may lead to identification of additional RN candidates. On the other hand, other RNe are found to be comparatively hard X-ray faint. We present several scenarios that may explain this dichotomy, which should be explored further.

  2. Accretion-outflow connection in the outliers of the ``universal'' radio/X-ray correlation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coriat, M.; Corbel, S.; Prat, L.; Miller-Jones, J. C. A.; Cseh, D.; Tzioumis, A. K.; Brocksopp, C.; Rodriguez, J.; Fender, R. P.; Sivakoff, G. R.

    2011-02-01

    In recent years, numerous efforts have been devoted to unravel the connection between accretion flow and jets in accreting compact objects. Here we report new constraints on these issues, through the long term study of the radio and X-ray behaviour of the black hole candidate H 1743-322. This source is known to be one of the ``outliers'' of the universal radio/X-ray correlation, i.e. a group of stellar mass accreting black holes displaying fainter radio emission for a given X-ray luminosity, than expected from the correlation. In this work we find, at high X-ray luminosity in the hard state, a tight radio/X-ray correlation with an unusual steep slope of b = 1.38 +/- 0.03. This correlation then breaks below ~5 × 10-3 LEdd (M/10Msolar)-1 in X-rays and becomes shallower. When compared with radio/X-ray data from other black hole X-ray binaries, we see that the deviant points of H 1743-322 join the universal correlation and seem to follow it at low luminosity. Based on these results, we investigate several hypotheses that could explain both the b ~ 1.4 slope and the transition toward the universal correlation.

  3. A Possible X-Ray Detection of the Binary Millisecond Pulsar J1012+5307

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, Jules P.; Oliversen, Ronald (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    A possible X-ray detection of the newly discovered binary millisecond radio pulsar PSR J1012+5307 was obtained from an archival ROSAT observation. The 80 +/- 24 photons detected correspond to a 0.1 - 2.4 keV luminosity of approx. = 2.5 x 10(exp 30) erg/s at the nominal dispersion-measure distance of 520 pc. This luminosity is a factor of 2 less than that of PSR J0437-4715, a near twin of PSR J1012+5307 in its spin parameters and energetics, and the only millisecond pulsar from which pulsed X-rays have definitely been detected. PSR J1012+5307 is also within 6 deg of the "HI hole" in Ursa Major, providing a new estimate of the electron column density through this region which confirms that the ionized column density is also low. The small neutral column density to PSR J1012+5307, N(sub H) less than 7.5 x 10(exp 19)/sq cm, will facilitate future soft X-ray study, which will help to discriminate between thermal and nonthermal origins of the X-ray emission in millisecond pulsars.

  4. X-ray AGN Clustering, Bias & Accretion mode

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plionis, Manolis; Koutoulidis, Lazaros; Georgantopoulos, Ioannis; Fanidakis, Nikolaos

    2012-09-01

    We present the spatial clustering properties of 1466 X-ray selected AGN compiled from the Chandra CDF-N, CDF-S, eCDF-S, COSMOS and AEGIS fields in the 0.5-8 keV band. The X-ray sources span the redshift interval 0X-ray AGN bias and the corresponding dark-matter host halo mass, are significantly higher than the corresponding values of optically selected AGN (at the same redshifts. The redshift evolution of the X-ray selected AGN bias indicates, in agreement with other recent studies, that a unique dark-matter halo mass does not fit well the bias at all the different redshifts probed. Furthermore, we investigate if there is a dependence of the clustering strength on X-ray luminosity, applying a procedure to disentangle the dependence of clustering on redshift. We find indications for a positive dependence of the clustering length on X-ray luminosity, in the sense that the more luminous sources have a larger clustering length and hence a higher dark-matter halo mass.

  5. X-ray reprocessing in binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paul, Biswajit

    2016-07-01

    We will discuss several aspects of X-ray reprocessing into X-rays or longer wavelength radiation in different kinds of binary systems. In high mass X-ray binaries, reprocessing of hard X-rays into emission lines or lower temperature black body emission is a useful tool to investigate the reprocessing media like the stellar wind, clumpy structures in the wind, accretion disk or accretion stream. In low mass X-ray binaries, reprocessing from the surface of the companion star, the accretion disk, warps and other structures in the accretion disk produce signatures in longer wavelength radiation. X-ray sources with temporal structures like the X-ray pulsars and thermonuclear burst sources are key in such studies. We will discuss results from several new investigations of X-ray reprocessing phenomena in X-ray binaries.

  6. The binary millisecond pulsar PSR J1023+0038 during its accretion state - I. Optical variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shahbaz, T.; Linares, M.; Nevado, S. P.; Rodríguez-Gil, P.; Casares, J.; Dhillon, V. S.; Marsh, T. R.; Littlefair, S.; Leckngam, A.; Poshyachinda, S.

    2015-11-01

    We present time-resolved optical photometry of the binary millisecond `redback' pulsar PSR J1023+0038 (=AY Sex) during its low-mass X-ray binary phase. The light curves taken between 2014 January and April show an underlying sinusoidal modulation due to the irradiated secondary star and accretion disc. We also observe superimposed rapid flaring on time-scales as short as ˜20 s with amplitudes of ˜0.1-0.5 mag and additional large flare events on time-scales of ˜5-60 min with amplitudes of ˜0.5-1.0 mag. The power density spectrum of the optical flare light curves is dominated by a red-noise component, typical of aperiodic activity in X-ray binaries. Simultaneous X-ray and UV observations by the Swift satellite reveal strong correlations that are consistent with X-ray reprocessing of the UV light, most likely in the outer regions of the accretion disc. On some nights we also observe sharp-edged, rectangular, flat-bottomed dips randomly distributed in orbital phase, with a median duration of ˜250 s and a median ingress/egress time of ˜20 s. These rectangular dips are similar to the mode-switching behaviour between disc `active' and `passive' luminosity states, observed in the X-ray light curves of other redback millisecond pulsars. This is the first time that the optical analogue of the X-ray mode-switching has been observed. The properties of the passive- and active-state light curves can be explained in terms of clumpy accretion from a trapped inner accretion disc near the corotation radius, resulting in rectangular, flat-bottomed optical and X-ray light curves.

  7. Seeing to the Event Horizon: Probing Accretion Physics with X-ray Reflection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilkins, Dan

    2015-09-01

    Accretion onto supermassive black holes in active galactic nuclei is known to power some of the most luminous objects we see in the Universe, which through their vast energy outputs must have played an important role in shaping the large scale structure of the Universe we see today. Much remains unknown, however, about the fine details of this process; exactly how energy is liberated from accretion flows onto black holes, how the 'corona' that produces the intense X-ray continuum is formed and what governs this process over time. I will outline how the detection of X-rays reflected from the discs of accreting material around black holes by the present generation of large X-ray observatories, shifted in energy and blurred by relativistic effects in the strong gravitational field close to the black hole, has enabled measurements of the inner regions of the accretion flow in unprecedented detail. In particular, exploiting the shift in energy of atomic emission lines by relativistic effects as a function of location on the disc has enabled the measurement of the illumination pattern of the accretion flow by the X-ray continuum from which the geometry of the emitting region can be inferred and how the detection of time lags between the primary and reflected X-rays owing to the additional path the reflected rays must travel between the corona and the disc places further constraints on the nature of the emitting corona. These techniques allow the evolution of the corona that accompanies transitions from high to low X-ray flux to be studied, giving clues to the physical process that forms and powers the intense X-ray source and uncovering evidence for the potential launching of jets. I will discuss the great steps forward in understanding accretion physics that can be made with the Athena X-ray observatory, combining detailed analysis of observations with predictions and models from general relativistic ray tracing simulations. In particular, I will discuss how high

  8. Period Clustering of the Anomalous X-Ray Pulsars and Magnetic Field Decay in Magnetars.

    PubMed

    Colpi; Geppert; Page

    2000-01-20

    We confront theoretical models for the rotational, magnetic, and thermal evolution of an ultramagnetized neutron star, or magnetar, with available data on the anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs). We argue that, if the AXPs are interpreted as magnetars, their clustering of spin periods between 6 and 12 s (observed at present in this class of objects), their period derivatives, their thermal X-ray luminosities, and the association of two of them with young supernova remnants can only be understood globally if the magnetic field in magnetars decays significantly on a timescale of the order of 104 yr. PMID:10615029

  9. Three-dimensional Hydrodynamic Simulations of Accretion in High-mass X-ray Binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raymer, Eric John

    Wind accretion in high-mass X-ray binaries (HMXBs) often results in highly variable X-ray behavior, the nature of which is not well understood. Most models of wind accretion are based on the analytical predictions of Hoyle-Lyttleton accretion (HLA), which assumes a steady axisymmetric flow. Surprisingly little is known about the structure, stability, and time-evolution of HLA in three dimensions, particularly in the presence of non-uniform winds. This work describes hydrodynamic simulations of idealized HLA in three-dimensions, then applies these simulations to two HMXB subclasses that exhibit unexplained X-ray behavior. Our idealized HLA models show that the accretion flow remains steady and stable in two-dimensional axisymmetric and three dimensional grid geometries, assuming a uniform upstream flow. We test the stability of the model with linear upstream density gradients and find that they are able to induce rotational flow around the accretor that reduces the mass accretion rate by up to an order of magnitude. We apply our 3D model to accretion in the context of Be/X-ray binaries, in which the accreting neutron star is immersed in the dense decretion disk of the Be donor star. These systems have traditionally been described with 2D models that exhibit the flip-flop instability. This instability results in the formation and destruction of transient accretion disks with accompanying bursts of mass accretion. Our 3D models show no sign of the flip-flop instability, but instead display rotation about the neutron star directed primarily out of the plane of the decretion disk. This rotation generates large-scale asymmetries in the bow shock and suppresses mass accretion by up to two orders of magnitude. The accretion of a clumped stellar wind is one of the primary mechanisms proposed to explain the high-luminosity X-ray flares of supergiant fast X-ray transients. We model clump accretion in 3D to determine whether the impact of a clump can produce flares with a

  10. ON THE EVOLUTION OF ANOMALOUS X-RAY PULSARS AND SOFT GAMMA-RAY REPEATERS WITH FALL BACK DISKS

    SciTech Connect

    Ertan, Ue.; Alpar, M. A.; Eksi, K. Y.; Erkut, M. H.

    2009-09-10

    We show that the period clustering of anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs) and soft gamma-ray repeaters (SGRs), their X-ray luminosities, ages, and statistics can be explained with fall back disks with large initial specific angular momentum. The disk evolution models are developed by comparison to self-similar analytical models. The initial disk mass and angular momentum set the viscous timescale. An efficient torque, with (1 - {omega}{sup 2}{sub *}) dependence on the fastness parameter {omega}{sub *}, leads to period clustering in the observed AXP-SGR period range under a wide range of initial conditions. The timescale t{sub 0} for the early evolution of the fall back disk, and the final stages of fall back disk evolution, when the disk becomes passive, are the crucial determinants of the evolution. The disk becomes passive at temperatures around 100 K, which provides a natural cutoff for the X-ray luminosity and defines the end of evolution in the observable AXP and SGR phase. This low value for the minimum temperature for active disk turbulence indicates that the fall back disks are active up to a large radius, {approx}>10{sup 12} cm. We find that transient AXPs and SGRs are likely to be older than their persistent cousins. A fall back disk with mass transfer rates corresponding to the low quiescent X-ray luminosities of the transient sources in early evolutionary phases would have a relatively lower initial mass, such that the mass-flow rate in the disk is not sufficient for the inner disk to penetrate into the light cylinder of the young neutron star, making mass accretion onto the neutron star impossible. The transient AXP phase therefore must start later. The model results imply that the transient AXP/SGRs, although older, are likely to be similar in number to persistent sources. This is because the X-ray luminosities of AXPs and SGRs are found to decrease faster at the end of their evolution, and the X-ray luminosities of transient AXP and SGRs in quiescence lie

  11. First X-ray Observations of the Young Pulsar J1357-6429

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zavlin, Vyacheslav E.

    2007-01-01

    The first short Chandra and XMM-Newton observations of the young and energetic pulsar J1357-6429 provided strong indications of a tail-like pulsar-wind nebula associated with this object, as well as strong pulsations of its X-ray flux with a pulsed fraction above 40% and a thermal component dominating at lower photon energies (below 2 keV). The elongated nebular is very compact in size. about 1" x 1.5" and might be interpreted as a pulsar jet. The thermal radiation is most plausibly emitted from the entire neutron star surface of an effective temperature about 1 MK covered with a magnetized hydrogen atmosphere At higher energies the pulsar's emission is of a nonthermal (magnetospheric) origin, with a power-law spectrum of a photon index Gamma approx. equals 1.1. This makes the X-ray properties of PSR J1357-6429 very similar to those of the youngest pulsars J1119-6127 and Vela with a detected thermal radiation.

  12. Time-dependent spherically symmetric accretion onto compact X-ray sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cowie, L. L.; Ostriker, J. P.; Stark, A. A.

    1978-01-01

    Analytical arguments and a numerical hydrodynamic code are used to investigate spherically symmetric accretion onto a compact object, in an attempt to provide some insight into gas flows heated by an outgoing X-ray flux. It is shown that preheating of spherically symmetric accretion flows by energetic radiation from an X-ray source results in time-dependent behavior for a much wider range of source parameters than was determined previously and that there are two distinct types of instability. The results are compared with observations of X-ray bursters and transients as well as with theories on quasars and active galactic nuclei that involve quasi-spherically symmetric accretion onto massive black holes. Models based on spherically symmetric accretion are found to be inconsistent with observations of bursters and transients.

  13. High Time Resolution Studies of Binary X-Ray Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cominsky, Lynn R.

    1996-05-01

    The work for this project was substantially more than anticipated, and involved recreating an analysis system for all the HEAO A-1 scanning data which had been converted to the ELE format. As a result of this work, a complete software analysis package was first created at Sonoma State University using Fortran, that can extract the data for any given X-ray source, and produce light curves from the scanning data. A second complete software analysis package was also created, this time in IDL, which can also display all the data in a timely manner, allowing data screening without the generation of hardcopy plots. The creation of the software systems was not the original goal of the project; rather this was a necessary result when the NRL computers became inoperable due to old age and could not be used to support the project, as originally planned. There were 6 sources originally proposed for analysis: SMC X-1, A0538-66, LMC X-1, LMC X-3, (these 3 sources are all located in the Large Magellanic Cloud region), 4UO115+63 and 4U1626-67. Results on these sources are summarized.

  14. X-Ray Emission from the Millisecond Pulsar J1012+5307

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, Jules P.; Wang, F. Y.-H.; Oliversen, Ronald (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The recently discovered 5.3 ms pulsar J1012+5307 at a distance of 520 pc is in an area of the sky which is particularly deficient in absorbing gas. The column density along the line of sight is less than 7.5 x 10(exp 19)/sq cm, which facilitates soft X-ray observations. Halpern reported a possible ROSAT PSPC detection of the pulsar in a serendipitous, off-axis observation. We have now confirmed the X-ray emission of PSR J1012+5307 in a 23 ksec observation with the ROSAT HRI. A point source is detected within 3 sec. of the radio position. Its count rate of 1.6 +/- 0.3 x 10(exp -3)/s corresponds to an unabsorbed 0.1 - 2.4 keV flux of 6.4 x 10(exp -14) ergs/sq cm s, similar to that reported previously. This counts-to-flux conversion is valid for N(sub H) = 5 x 10(exp 19)/sq cm, and either a power-law spectrum of photon index 2.5 or a blackbody of kT = 0.1 keV. The implied X-ray luminosity of 2.0 x 10(exp 30) ergs/ s is 5 x 10(exp -4) of the pulsar's spin-down power E, and similar to that of the nearest millisecond pulsar J0437-4715, which is nearly a twin of J1012+5307 in P and E. We subjected the 37 photons (and 13 background counts) within the source region to a pulsar search, but no evidence for pulsation was found. The pulsar apparently emits over a large fraction of its rotation cycle, and the absence of sharp modulation can be taken as evidence for surface thermal emission, as favored for PSR J0437-4715, rather than magnetospheric X-ray emission which is apparent in the sharp pulses of the much more energetic millisecond pulsar B1821-24. A further test of of the interpretation will be made with a longer ROSAT observation, which will increase the number of photons collected by a factor of 5, and permit a more sensitive examination of the light curve for modulation due to emission from heated polar caps. If found, such modulation will be further evidence that surface reheating by the impact of particles accelerated along open field lines operates in these approx

  15. X-ray observations of the Vela pulsar: Statistics and spectrum

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pravdo, S. H.; Becker, R. H.; Boldt, E. A.; Holt, S. S.; Rothschild, R. E.; Serlemitsos, P. J.; Swank, J. H.

    1976-01-01

    The Vela pulsar was observed in the range 2-60 keV by the GSFC proportional counter experiment onboard OSO-8 with temporal resolution sufficient to make possible a sensitive search for pulsed X-rays at the radio pulsar period. A statistical analysis yielded 8 per cent as the 3 sigma upper limit on the pulsed fraction. The energy spectrum is fit well by a structureless power law with number index 2.21 + or - 0.2 and absorption by a hydrogen column density of N sub H equals 2.9 + or - 2.0 times ten to the twenty-second power per sq.cm.

  16. X-RAY OUTFLOWS AND SUPER-EDDINGTON ACCRETION IN THE ULTRALUMINOUS X-RAY SOURCE HOLMBERG IX X-1

    SciTech Connect

    Walton, D. J.; Harrison, F. A.; Miller, J. M.; Reis, R. C.; Fabian, A. C.; Roberts, T. P.; Middleton, M. J.

    2013-08-10

    Studies of X-ray continuum emission and flux variability have not conclusively revealed the nature of ultraluminous X-ray sources (ULXs) at the high-luminosity end of the distribution (those with L{sub X} {>=} 10{sup 40} erg s{sup -1}). These are of particular interest because the luminosity requires either super-Eddington accretion onto a black hole of mass {approx}10 M{sub Sun} or more standard accretion onto an intermediate-mass black hole. Super-Eddington accretion models predict strong outflowing winds, making atomic absorption lines a key diagnostic of the nature of extreme ULXs. To search for such features, we have undertaken a long, 500 ks observing campaign on Holmberg IX X-1 with Suzaku. This is the most sensitive data set in the iron K bandpass for a bright, isolated ULX to date, yet we find no statistically significant atomic features in either emission or absorption; any undetected narrow features must have equivalent widths less than 15-20 eV at 99% confidence. These limits are far below the {approx}>150 eV lines expected if observed trends between mass inflow and outflow rates extend into the super-Eddington regime and in fact rule out the line strengths observed from disk winds in a variety of sub-Eddington black holes. We therefore cannot be viewing the central regions of Holmberg IX X-1 through any substantial column of material, ruling out models of spherical super-Eddington accretion. If Holmberg IX X-1 is a super-Eddington source, any associated outflow must have an anisotropic geometry. Finally, the lack of iron emission suggests that the stellar companion cannot be launching a strong wind and that Holmberg IX X-1 must primarily accrete via Roche-lobe overflow.

  17. Probing X-ray burst - accretion disk interaction in low mass X-ray binaries through kilohertz quasiperiodic oscillations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peille, P.; Olive, J.-F.; Barret, D.

    2014-07-01

    The intense radiation flux of Type I X-ray bursts is expected to interact with the accretion flow around neutron stars. High frequency quasiperiodic oscillations (kHz QPOs), observed at frequencies matching orbital frequencies at tens of gravitational radii, offer a unique probe of the innermost disk regions. In this paper, we follow the lower kHz QPOs, in response to Type I X-ray bursts, in two prototypical QPO sources, namely 4U 1636-536 and 4U 1608-522, as observed by the Proportional Counter Array of the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer. We have selected a sample of 15 bursts for which the kHz QPO frequency can be tracked on timescales commensurable with the burst durations (tens of seconds). We find evidence that the QPOs are affected for over ~200 s during one exceptionally long burst and ~100 s during two others (although at a less significant level), while the burst emission has already decayed to a level that would enable the pre-burst QPO to be detected. On the other hand, for most of our burst-kHz QPO sample, we show that the QPO is detected as soon as the statistics allow and in the best cases, we are able to set an upper limit of ~20 s on the recovery time of the QPO. This diversity of behavior cannot be related to differences in burst peak luminosity. We discuss these results in the framework of recent findings that accretion onto the neutron star may be enhanced during Type I X-ray bursts. The subsequent disk depletion could explain the disappearance of the QPO for ~100 s, as possibly observed in two events. However, alternative scenarios would have to be invoked for explaining the short recovery timescales inferred from most bursts. Heating of the innermost disk regions would be a possibility, although we cannot exclude that the burst does not affect the QPO emission at all. Clearly the combination of fast timing and spectral information of Type I X-ray bursts holds great potential in the study of the dynamics of the inner accretion flow around neutron

  18. Propeller effect in two brightest transient X-ray pulsars: 4U 0115+63 and V 0332+53

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsygankov, S. S.; Lutovinov, A. A.; Doroshenko, V.; Mushtukov, A. A.; Suleimanov, V.; Poutanen, J.

    2016-08-01

    Aims: We present the results of the monitoring programmes performed with the Swift/XRT telescope and aimed specifically to detect an abrupt decrease of the observed flux associated with a transition to the propeller regime in two well-known X-ray pulsars 4U 0115+63 and V 0332+53. Methods: Both sources form binary systems with Be optical companions and undergo so-called giant outbursts every 3-4 years. The current observational campaigns were performed with the Swift/XRT telescope in the soft X-ray band (0.5-10 keV) during the declining phases of the outbursts exhibited by both sources in 2015. Results: The transitions to the propeller regime were detected at the threshold luminosities of (1.4 ± 0.4) × 1036 erg s-1 and (2.0 ± 0.4) × 1036 erg s-1 for 4U 0115+63 and V 0332+53, respectively. Spectra of the sources are shown to be significantly softer during the low state. In both sources, the accretion at rates close to the aforementioned threshold values briefly resumes during the periastron passage following the transition into the propeller regime. The strength of the dipole component of the magnetic field required to inhibit the accretion agrees well with estimates based on the position of the cyclotron lines in their spectra, thus excluding presence of a strong multipole component of the magnetic field in the vicinity of the neutron star.

  19. A model of an X-ray-illuminated accretion disk and corona

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raymond, John C.

    1993-01-01

    The X-ray-illuminated surface of the accretion disk in a low-mass X-ray Binary (LMXRB) and the X-ray-heated corona above the disk produce optical, UV, and soft X-ray emission lines. This paper presents 1D models of the emission line spectra and the vertical temperature and density structures at different radii. The models include a detailed treatment of the important atomic processes and an escape probability treatment of radiative transfer. Soker and Raymond (1993) use the density structure predicted by these models for a 2D Monte Carlo simulation of the photon scattering in the accretion disk corona (ADC) to examine the effects of the ADC on the angular distribution of X-rays and the flux of X-rays incident on the outer disk. This paper concentrates on the emission line fluxes for various elemental abundances and disk parameters. The UV lines of the classic LMXRBs are consistent with the model predictions. Some CNO processing is necessary to account for the nitrogen and helium abundances in Sco X-1 and other LMXRBs. Comparison of the models with observed spectra also points to a soft X-ray component with luminosity comparable to the hard X-rays. The models predict a substantial luminosity in the group of highly ionized iron lines near 100 A.

  20. Excitation of a non-radial mode in a millisecond X-ray pulsar XTE J1751-305

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Umin

    2014-08-01

    We discuss non-radial modes in mass-accreting and rapidly rotating neutron stars for the coherent frequency detected in a millisecond X-ray pulsar XTE J1751-305. The spin frequency of the pulsar is νspin ≅ 435 Hz and the identified frequency is νosc = 0.572 7595 × νspin. Assuming that the frequency detected is that in the corotating frame of the star, we examine r and g modes in the surface layer of accreting matter composed mostly of helium, inertial and r modes in the fluid core, and toroidal modes in the solid crust. We find that the r modes of l' = m = 1 and 2 excited by ɛ-mechanism in the surface layer can give the ratio κ = νosc/νspin ≃ 0.57 at νspin = 435 Hz, where m and l' are the azimuthal wavenumber and the harmonic degree of the modes. We also suggest a toroidal crust mode and a core r mode destabilized by gravitational wave emission for the observed ratio κ. We find that the amplitude of the core r mode of l' = m = 2 can be amplified at the surface layer by a large factor famp ˜ 102 at νspin = 435 Hz for a M = 1.4 M⊙ neutron-star model. This amplification, however, may not be large enough for the r-mode amplitude to be consistent with an estimation by Mahmoodifar & Strohmayer (2013).

  1. TINY HICCUPS TO TITANIC EXPLOSIONS: Tackling Transients in Anomalous X-ray Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaspi, Victoria

    2011-09-01

    The past decade has seen major progress in neutron star astrophysics, with the discovery of magnetars in general, and the recognition that the Anomalous X-ray Pulsars (AXPs) fall in this class. AXPs have recently revealed surprising and dramatic variability behavior, which theorists have begun to show are highly constraining of physical models of magnetars, including their crusts, atmospheres, coronae and magnetospheres. In this proposal, we request Chandra/ACIS-S Target-of-Opportunity observations of one major Anomalous X-ray Pulsar (AXP) outburst in AO13, in order to study in detail the evolution of the spectrum, pulsed fraction and pulse profile, for quantitative confrontation with recently developed models for the structure and electrodynamics of magnetars.

  2. TINY HICCUPS TO TITANIC EXPLOSIONS: Tackling Transients in Anomalous X-ray Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaspi, Victoria

    2010-09-01

    The past decade has seen major progress in neutron star astrophysics, with the discovery of magnetars in general, and the recognition that the Anomalous X-ray Pulsars (AXPs) fall in this class. AXPs have recently revealed surprising and dramatic variability behavior, which theorists have begun to show are highly constraining of physical models of magnetars, including their crusts, atmospheres, coronae and magnetospheres. In this proposal, we request Chandra/ACIS-S Target-of-Opportunity observations of one major Anomalous X-ray Pulsar (AXP) outburst in AO12, in order to study in detail the evolution of the spectrum, pulsed fraction and pulse profile, for quantitative confrontation with recently developed models for the structure and electrodynamics of magnetars.

  3. GBM Observations of Be X-Ray Binary Outbursts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson-Hodge, Colleen A.; Finger, M. H.; Jenke, P. A.

    2014-01-01

    Since 2008 we have been monitoring accreting pulsars using the Gamma ray Burst Monitor (GBM) on Fermi. This monitoring program includes daily blind full sky searches for previously unknown or previously quiescent pulsars and source specific analysis to track the frequency evolution of all detected pulsars. To date we have detected outbursts from 23 transient accreting pulsars, including 21 confirmed or likely Be/X-ray binaries. I will describe our techniques and highlight results for selected pulsars.

  4. X-Ray Observations of the Young Pulsar J1357—6429 and Its Pulsar Wind Nebula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Chulhoon; Pavlov, George G.; Kargaltsev, Oleg; Shibanov, Yurii A.

    2012-01-01

    We observed the young pulsar J1357—6429 with the Chandra and XMM-Newton observatories. The pulsar spectrum fits well a combination of an absorbed power-law model (Γ = 1.7 ± 0.6) and a blackbody model (kT = 140+60 - 40 eV, R ~ 2 km at the distance of 2.5 kpc). Strong pulsations with pulsed fraction of 42% ± 5%, apparently associated with the thermal component, were detected in 0.3-1.1 keV. Surprisingly, the pulsed fraction at higher energies, 1.1-10 keV, appears to be smaller, 23% ± 4%. The small emitting area of the thermal component either corresponds to a hotter fraction of the neutron star surface or indicates inapplicability of the simplistic blackbody description. The X-ray images also reveal a pulsar wind nebula (PWN) with complex, asymmetric morphology comprised of a brighter, compact PWN surrounded by the fainter, much more extended PWN whose spectral slopes are Γ = 1.3 ± 0.3 and Γ = 1.7 ± 0.2, respectively. The extended PWN with the observed flux of ~7.5 × 10-13 erg s-1 cm-2 is a factor of 10 more luminous then the compact PWN. The pulsar and its PWN are located close to the center of the extended TeV source HESS J1356-645, which strongly suggests that the very high energy emission is powered by electrons injected by the pulsar long ago. The X-ray to TeV flux ratio, ~0.1, is similar to those of other relic PWNe. We found no other viable candidates to power the TeV source. A region of diffuse radio emission, offset from the pulsar toward the center of the TeV source, could be synchrotron emission from the same relic PWN rather than from the supernova remnant.

  5. Hiccup accretion in the swinging pulsar IGR J18245-2452

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferrigno, C.; Bozzo, E.; Papitto, A.; Rea, N.; Pavan, L.; Campana, S.; Wieringa, M.; Filipović, M.; Falanga, M.; Stella, L.

    2014-07-01

    The source IGR J18245-2452 is the fifteenth discovered accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar and the first neutron star to show direct evidence of a transition between accretion- and rotation-powered emission states. These swings provided the strongest confirmation to date of the pulsar recycling scenario. During the two XMM-Newton observations that were carried out while the source was in outburst in April 2013, IGR J18245-2452 displayed a unique and peculiar X-ray variability. In this work, we report on a detailed analysis of the XMM-Newton data and focus on the timing and spectral variability of the source. In the 0.4-11 keV energy band, IGR J18245-2452 continuously switched between lower and higher intensity states, with typical variations in flux by factor of ~100 on time scales as short as a few seconds. These variations in the source intensity were sometimes accompanied by dramatic spectral hardening, during which the X-ray power-law photon index varied from Γ = 1.7 to Γ = 0.9. The pulse profiles extracted at different count-rates, hardnesses, and energies also showed a complex variability. These phenomena were never observed in accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars, at least not on such a short time-scale. Fast variability was also found in the 5.5 and 9 GHz ATCA radio observations that were carried out for about 6 h during the outburst. We interpret the variability observed from IGR J18245-2452 in terms of a hiccup accretion phase, during which the accretion of material from the inner boundary of the Keplerian disk is reduced by the onset of centrifugal inhibition of accretion, possibly causing the launch of outflows. Changes across accretion and propeller regimes have been long predicted and reproduced by magnetohydrodynamic simulations of accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars, but have never observed to produce as extreme a variability as that shown by IGR J18245-2452.

  6. X-ray pulsars/Doppler integrated navigation for Mars final approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cui, Pingyuan; Wang, Shuo; Gao, Ai; Yu, Zhengshi

    2016-05-01

    The performance of the navigation system during the Mars final approach phase determines the initial accuracy of Mars entry phase, which is critical for a pin-point landing. An X-ray pulsars/Doppler integrated navigation strategy is proposed to improve the estimation accuracy of the spacecraft's entry state, as well as to enhance the autonomy, real-time and reliability. The navigation system uses the X-ray pulsar measurements and Doppler velocity measurements which are complementary to each other. The performance degradation in velocity estimation at the end of the final approach phase for X-ray pulsar based navigation can thus be eliminated. The nonlinearity of the system and the performance of Extended Kalman Filter are analyzed in this paper. Furthermore, in order to optimize the navigation scheme, a principle for navigation beacons selection based on the Fisher information matrix is used. Finally, a navigation scenario based on the 2012 encounter at Mars of Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft is considered to demonstrate the feasibility and accuracy of the proposed scheme. Simulation results also indicate that the proposed navigation scheme has reference value for the design of the future Mars explorations.

  7. Neutron stars and millisecond pulsars from accretion-induced collapse in globular clusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bailyn, Charles D.; Grindlay, Jonathan E.

    1990-01-01

    This paper examines the limits on the number of millisecond pulsars which could be formed in globular clusters by the generally accepted scenario (in which a neutron star is created by the supernova of an initially massive star and subsequently captures a companion to form a low-mass X-ray binary which eventually becomes a millisecond pulsar). It is found that, while the number of observed low-mass X-ray binaries can be adequately explained in this way, the reasonable assumption that the pulsar luminosity function in clusters extends below the current observational limits down to the luminosity of the faintest millisecond pulsars in the field suggests a cluster population of millisecond pulsars which is substantially larger than the standard model can produce. Alleviating this problem by postulating much shorter lifetimes for the X-ray binaries requires massive star populations sufficiently large that the mass loss resulting from their evolution would be likely to unbind the cluster. It is argued that neutron star formation in globular clusters by accretion-induced collapse of white dwarfs may resolve the discrepancy in birthrates.

  8. SEXTANT: A Demonstration of X-ray Pulsar-Based Navigation Using NICER

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, Paul S.; Mitchell, Jason W; Winternitz, Luke M; Hasouneh, Monther A; Price, Samuel R; Valdez, Jennifer; Yu, Wayne H; Semper, Sean R; Wood, Kent S.; Wolff, Michael Thomas; Arzoumanian, Zaven; Litchford, Ronald J; Gendreau, Keith

    2014-08-01

    The Station Explorer for X-ray Timing and Navigation Technology (SEXTANT) is a technology-demonstration enhancement to the Neutron-star Interior Composition Explorer (NICER) mission. NICER is a NASA Explorer Mission of Opportunity that will be hosted on the International Space Station (ISS). SEXTANT will, for the first time, demonstrate real-time, on-board X-ray pulsar-based navigation (XNAV), a significant milestone in the quest to establish a GPS-like navigation capability available throughout our Solar System and beyond. The SEXTANT XNAV demonstration will exploit the large collecting area (>1800 cm^2), low background (<0.2 counts/s), and precise timing (<300 ns) of the NICER X-ray Timing Instrument (XTE). Taking advantage of NICER’s science observations of X-ray emitting millisecond pulsars, which are nature’s most stable clocks, the SEXTANT flight software will demonstrate real-time orbit determination with error less than 10 km in any direction, through measurements made over 2 weeks or less in the highly dynamic low-Earth ISS orbit. The completed technology demonstration will bring the XNAV concept and algorithms to a Technology Readiness Level of 8 and will inform the design and configuration of future practical XNAV implementations.

  9. The hard X-ray emission spectra from accretion columns in intermediate polars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yi, Insu; Vishniac, Ethan T.

    1994-01-01

    We consider the hard (greater than 2 keV) X-ray emission from accretion columns in an intermediate polar system, GK Per, using a simple settling solution. The rate of photon emission per logarithmic energy interval can be fitted with a power law, E(exp -gamma), with gamma approximately 2.0, in agreement with observations. This index is only weakly dependent on the mass accretion rate, dot-M, for dot-M in the range of a few times 10(exp 16-18) g/s. The peak energy of the photon spectra (after photoelectric absorption) is expected to be E(sub p) approximately (5 keV) gamma(exp -1/3) (N(sub H)/10(exp 23)/sq cm)(exp 1/3) where N(sub H) is the hydrogen column density along the line of sight. The observed spectra of GK Per and possibly of V1223 Sgr suggest N(sub H) approximately 10(exp 23)/sq cm. This large N(sub H) may be due to partially ionized preshock column material. Alternatively, we also consider absorption by the cool outer parts of an accretion disk. In this case the photoelectric absorption depth in the disk is a sensitive function of inclination. For GK Per the required inclination is approximately 83 deg. For mass accretion rates larger than a critical rate of approximately 10(exp 18) g/s, X-ray emission from the column accretion is significantly affected by radiation drag. Although the mass accretion rate increases dramatically during outbursts, the observed hard (greater than 2 keV) X-ray luminosity will not rise proportionately. The slope and peak energy of the outburst spectra are only weakly affected. We conclude that the observed X-ray spectra can be explained by this simple analytic solution and that the production of hard X-rays from the accretion shock at the magnetic poles in the intermediate polars is in general agreement with the observations. However, since the X-ray emission and absorption depend on the mass accretion rate in a complicated manner, observed hard X-ray luminosities (greater than 2 keV) are not a good indicator of the mass

  10. Interstellar X-Ray Absorption Spectroscopy of the Crab Pulsar with the LETGS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Paerels, Frits; Weisskopf, Martin C.; Tennant, Allyn F.; ODell, Stephen L.; Swartz, Douglas A.; Kahn, Steven M.; Behar, Ehud; Becker, Werner; Whitaker, Ann F. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    We study the interstellar X-ray absorption along the line of sight to the Crab Pulsar. The Crab was observed with the Low Energy Transmission Grating Spectrometer on the Chandra X-ray Observatory, and the pulsar, a point source, produces a full resolution spectrum. The continuum spectrum appears smooth, and we compare its parameters with other measurements of the pulsar spectrum. The spectrum clearly shows absorption edges due to interstellar Ne, Fe, and O. The O edge shows spectral structure that is probably due to O bound in molecules or dust. We search for near-edge structure (EXAFS) in the O absorption spectrum. The Fe L absorption spectrum is largely due to a set of unresolved discrete n=2-3 transitions in neutral or near-neutral Fe, and we analyze it using a new set of dedicated atomic structure calculations, which provide absolute cross sections. In addition to being interesting in its own right, the ISM absorption needs to be understood in quantitative detail in order to derive spectroscopic constraints on possible soft thermal radiation from the pulsar.

  11. Absorption features in the x-ray spectrum of an ordinary radio pulsar.

    PubMed

    Kargaltsev, Oleg; Durant, Martin; Misanovic, Zdenka; Pavlov, George G

    2012-08-24

    The vast majority of known nonaccreting neutron stars (NSs) are rotation-powered radio and/or γ-ray pulsars. So far, their multiwavelength spectra have all been described satisfactorily by thermal and nonthermal continuum models, with no spectral lines. Spectral features have, however, been found in a handful of exotic NSs and were thought to be a manifestation of their unique traits. Here, we report the detection of absorption features in the x-ray spectrum of an ordinary rotation-powered radio pulsar, J1740+1000. Our findings bridge the gap between the spectra of pulsars and other, more exotic, NSs, suggesting that the features are more common in the NS spectra than they have been thought so far. PMID:22923576

  12. Chandra X-Ray Observatory Observations of the Globular Cluster M28 and its Millisecond Pulsar PSR B1821-24

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Becker, Werner; Swartz, Douglas A.; Pavlov, George G.; Elsner, Ronald F.; Grindlay, Jonathan; Mignani, Roberto; Tennant, Allyn F.; Backer, Don; Weisskopf, Martin C.

    2003-01-01

    We report here the results of the first Chandra X-Ray Observatory observations of the globular cluster M28 (NGC 6626). We detect 46 X-ray sources of which 12 lie within one core radius of the center. We show that the apparently extended X-ray core emission seen with the ROSAT HRI is due to the superposition of multiple discrete sources for which we determine the X-ray luminosity function down to a limit of about 6 x 10(exp 30) erg/s. We measure the radial distribution of the X-ray sources and fit it to a King profile finding a core radius of r(sub c,x) approx. 11 sec. We obtain the best-fit mass of the X-ray sources to be M(sub x) approx. 1.9 solar masses. We measure for the first time the unconfused phase-averaged X-ray spectrum of the 3.05-ms pulsar B1821-24 and find it best described by a power law with photon-index Gamma approx. equal to 1.2. We find marginal evidence of an emission line centered at 3.3 kev in the pulsar spectrum, which could be interpreted as cyclotron emission from a corona above the pulsar's polar cap if the the magnetic field is strongly different from a centered dipole. The unabsorbed pulsar flux in the 0.5-8.0 keV band is approx. 3.5 x 10(exp -13) ergs/s/sq cm. We present spectral analyses of the 5 brightest unidentified sources. Based on the spectral parameters of the brightest of these sources, we suggest that it is a transiently accreting neutron star in a low-mass X-ray binary, in quiescence. Fitting its spectrum with a hydrogen neutron star atmosphere model yields the effective temperature T(sup infinity)(sub eff) = 90(sup +30)(sub -10) eV and the radius R(sup infinity)(sub NS) = 14.5(sup +6.9)(sub -3.8) km. In addition to the resolved sources, we detect fainter, unresolved X-ray emission from the central core. Using the Chandra-derived positions, we also present a preliminary report on the result of searching archival Hubble Space Telescope data for possible optical counterparts.

  13. Exceptional X-ray Weak Quasars: Implications for Accretion Flows and Emission-Line Formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt, W. Niel; Luo, Bin; Hall, Patrick B.; Wu, Jianfeng; Anderson, Scott F.; Garmire, Gordon; Gibson, Robert; Plotkin, Richard; Richards, Gordon T.; Schneider, Donald P.; Shemmer, Ohad; Shen, Yue

    2016-01-01

    Actively accreting supermassive black holes are found, nearly universally, to create luminous X-ray emission, and this point underlies the utility of X-ray surveys for finding active galactic nuclei throughout the Universe. However, there are apparent X-ray weak exceptions to this rule that are now providing novel insights, including weak-line quasars (WLQs) and especially analogs of the extreme WLQ, PHL 1811. We have been systematically studying such X-ray weak quasars with Chandra and near-infrared spectroscopy, and I will report results on their remarkable properties and describe implications for models of the accretion disk/corona and emission-line formation. We have found evidence that many of these quasars may have geometrically thick inner accretion disks, likely due to high accretion rates, that shield the high-ionization broad line region from the relevant ionizing continuum. This model can explain, in a simple and unified manner, their weak lines and diverse X-ray properties. Such shielding may, more generally, play a role in shaping the broad distributions of quasar emission-line equivalent widths and blueshifts.

  14. Experimental Validation of Pulse Phase Tracking for X-Ray Pulsar Based

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, Kevin

    2012-01-01

    Pulsars are a form of variable celestial source that have shown to be usable as aids for autonomous, deep space navigation. Particularly those sources emitting in the X-ray band are ideal for navigation due to smaller detector sizes. In this paper X-ray photons arriving from a pulsar are modeled as a non-homogeneous Poisson process. The method of pulse phase tracking is then investigated as a technique to measure the radial distance traveled by a spacecraft over an observation interval. A maximum-likelihood phase estimator (MLE) is used for the case where the observed frequency signal is constant. For the varying signal frequency case, an algorithm is used in which the observation window is broken up into smaller blocks over which an MLE is used. The outputs of this phase estimation process were then looped through a digital phase-locked loop (DPLL) in order to reduce the errors and produce estimates of the doppler frequency. These phase tracking algorithms were tested both in a computer simulation environment and using the NASA Goddard Space flight Center X-ray Navigation Laboratory Testbed (GXLT). This provided an experimental validation with photons being emitted by a modulated X-ray source and detected by a silicon-drift detector. Models of the Crab pulsar and the pulsar B1821-24 were used in order to generate test scenarios. Three different simulated detector trajectories were used to be tracked by the phase tracking algorithm: a stationary case, one with constant velocity, and one with constant acceleration. All three were performed in one-dimension along the line of sight to the pulsar. The first two had a constant signal frequency and the third had a time varying frequency. All of the constant frequency cases were processed using the MLE, and it was shown that they tracked the initial phase within 0.15% for the simulations and 2.5% in the experiments, based on an average of ten runs. The MLE-DPLL cascade version of the phase tracking algorithm was used in

  15. Accretion Disks in Supersoft X-ray Sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Popham, Robert; DiStefano, Rosanne

    1996-01-01

    We examine the role of the accretion disk in the steady-burning white dwarf model for supersoft sources. The accretion luminosity of the disk is quite small compared to the nuclear burning luminosity of the central source. Thus, in contrast to standard accretion disks, the main role of the disk is to reprocess the radiation from the white dwarf. We calculate models of accretion disks around luminous white dwarfs and compare the resulting disk fluxes to optical and UV observations of the LMC supersoft sources CAL 83, CAL 87, and RX J0513.9-6951. We find that if the white dwarf luminosity is near the upper end of the steady-burning region, and the flaring of the disk is included, then reprocessing by the disk can account for the UV fluxes and a substantial fraction of the optical fluxes of these systems. Reprocessing by the companion star can provide additional optical flux, and here too the disk plays an important role: since the disk is fairly thick, it shadows a significant fraction of the companion's surface.

  16. Suzaku observations of cyclotron resonances in binary X-ray pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Terada, Y.; Mihara, T.; Nagase, F.; Angelini, L.; Dotani, T.; Enoto, T.; Kitamoto, S.; Kohmura, T.; Kokubun, M.; Kotani, T.; Makishima, K.; Naik, S.; Nakajima, M.; Sugita, S.; Sudoh, K.; Suzuki, M.; Takahashi, H.; Yonetoku, D.; Yoshida, A.

    Since the typical magnetic field strengths of neutron stars reach 10 12 Gauss, the cyclotron resonance produced by a transition between Landau levels appears in the X-ray band. Systematic measurements of cyclotron absorption features in bright sources have been carried out extensively with Ginga, RXTE, BeppoSAX, and INTEGRAL. The cyclotron resonance phenomena can now be studied with a higher sensitivity over a wider hard X-ray band than before, thanks to the Hard X-ray Detector onboard the fifth Japanese X-ray satellite, Suzaku, launched in July, 2005. Suzaku observed Hercules X-1 mainly for calibration purposes, and successfully confirmed its well-known cyclotron absorption feature. Furthermore, the transient pulsar A0535+262 was observed with Suzaku on 14 September, 2005, in the decay phase of its minor outburst (Finger, M.F. Renewed Activity from A0535+26. The Astronomer's Telegram, vol. 595, 2005). The cyclotron resonance of A0535+262 was successfully detected in absorption at about 45 keV (Inoue, H., Kunieda, H., White, N., Kelley, R., Mihara, T., Terada, Y., Takahashi, H., Kokubun, M., Makishima, K. Suzaku detection of cyclotron line near 50 keV for A0535+26. The Astronomer's Telegram vol. 595, 2005; Terada, Y., Mihara, T., Nakajima, M., et al. Cyclotron resonance energies at a low X-ray luminosity: A0535+262 observed with Suzaku. ApJL 648, L139-L142, 2006), even though the object was as dim as 30 mCrab at 20 keV. Compared with previous measurements of the same feature achieved at much brighter phases (e.g., Kretschmar, P., Kreykenbohm, I., Pottschmidt, et al. Integral observes possible cyclotron line at 47 keV for 1A0535+262. The Astronomer's Telegram, vol. 601, 2005; Wilson, C.A., Finger, M.H. RXTE confirms cyclotron line near 50 keV for A0535+26. The Astronomer's Telegram 605, 2005), the Suzaku results give a new constraint to luminosity-related changes in the resonance energy that are observed in other binary pulsars (Nakajima, M., Mihara, T., Makishima

  17. Evolution of the X-Ray Profile of the Crab Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ge, M. Y.; Yan, L. L.; Lu, F. J.; Zheng, S. J.; Yuan, J. P.; Tong, H.; Zhang, S. N.; Lu, Y.

    2016-02-01

    Using the archival data from the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer, we study the evolution of the Crab pulsar’s X-ray profile in a time span of 11 years. The X-ray profiles, as characterized by a few parameters, changed slightly, but with high statistical significance in these years: the separation of the two peaks increased with a rate of 0.°88 ± 0.°20 per century, the flux ratio of the second pulse to the first pulse decreased by (3.64+/- 0.86)× {10}-2 per century, and the pulse widths of the two pulses represented by their full widths at half maxima decreased by 1\\buildrel{\\circ}\\over{.} 44+/- 0\\buildrel{\\circ}\\over{.} 15 and 1\\buildrel{\\circ}\\over{.} 09+/- 0\\buildrel{\\circ}\\over{.} 73 per century, respectively. The evolutionary trends of the X-ray profile are similar to that observed in radio, but with quantitative differences. Finally, we briefly discuss the constraints of these X-ray properties on the geometry of the emission region of this pulsar.

  18. Absolute Timing of the Crab Pulsar: X-ray, Radio, and Optical Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, P. S.; Wood, K. S.; Wolff, M. T.; Lovellette, M. N.; Sheikh, S.; Moon, D.-S.; Eikenberry, S. S.; Roberts, M.; Bloom, E. D.; Tournear, D.; Saz Parkinson, P.; Reilly, K.

    2002-12-01

    We report on multiwavelength observations of the Crab Pulsar and compare the pulse arrival time at radio, IR, optical, and X-ray wavelengths. Comparing absolute arrival times at multiple energies can provide clues to the magnetospheric structure and emission region geometry. Absolute time calibration of each observing system is of paramount importance for these observations and we describe how this is done for each system. We directly compare arrival time determinations for 2--10 keV X-ray observations made contemporaneously with the PCA on the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer and the USA Experiment on ARGOS. These two X-ray measurements employ very different means of measuring time and satellite position and thus have different systematic error budgets. The comparison with other wavelengths requires additional steps such as dispersion measure corrections and a precise definition of the ``peak'' of the light curve since the light curve shape varies with observing wavelength. We will describe each of these effects and quantify the magnitude of the systematic error that each may contribute. Basic research on X-ray Astronomy at NRL is funded by NRL/ONR.

  19. X-Ray Iron Line Constraints on the Inner Accretion Disk and Black Hole Spin

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Reynolds, C. S.

    2000-01-01

    The broad iron line, seen in the X-ray spectra of many AGN, is thought to originate from the inner regions of the black hole accretion disk. I will summarize recent developments in using this line to probe the accretion disk structure, as well as the mass and spin of black holes n Seyfert galaxies. In particular, I will present observational evidence suggesting that the inner regions of the accretion disks in low-luminosity AGN (LLAGN) are distinctly different from those in higher-luminosity AGN. This tentative result lends support models of LLAGN based upon advective accretion disks.

  20. Chandra Phase-Resolved X-ray Spectroscopy of the Crab Pulsar II

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weisskopf, Martin C.; Tennant, Allyn F.; Yakovlev, Dimitry G.; Harding, Alice; Zavlin, Vyacheslav E.; Elsner, Ronald F.; Becker, Werner

    2012-01-01

    We present a new study of the X-ray spectral properties of the Crab Pulsar. The superb angular resolution of the Chandra X-ray Observatory enables distinguishing the pulsar from the surrounding nebulosity. Analysis of the spectrum as a function of pulse phase allows the least-biased measure of interstellar X-ray extinction due primarily to photoelectric absorption and secondarily to scattering by dust grains in the direction of the Crab Nebula. We modify previous findings that the line-of-sight to the Crab is under-abundant in oxygen and provide measurements with improved accuracy and less bias. Using the abundances and cross sections from Wilms, Allen & McCray (2000) we find [O/H] = (5.28+\\-0.28) x 10(exp -4) (4.9 x 10(exp -4) is solar abundance). \\rVe also measure for the first time the impact of scattering of flux out of the image by interstellar grains. \\rYe find T(sub scat) = 0.147+/-0.043. Analysis of the spectrum as a function of pulse phase also measures the X-ray spectral index even at pulse minimum - albeit with increasing statistical uncertainty. The spectral variations are, by and large, consistent with a sinusoidal variation. The only significant variation from the sinusoid occurs over the same phase range as some rather abrupt behavior in the optical polarization magnitude and position angle. We compare these spectral variations to those observed in Gamma-rays and conclude that our measurements are both a challenge and a guide to future modeling and will thus eventually help us understand pair cascade processes in pulsar magnetospheres. The data were also used to set new. and less biased, upper limits to the surface temperature of the neutron star for different models of the neutron star atmosphere.

  1. Chandra and Swift X-Ray Observations of the X-Ray Pulsar SMC X-2 During the Outburst of 2015

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, K. L.; Hu, C.-P.; Lin, L. C. C.; Kong, Albert K. H.

    2016-09-01

    We report the Chandra/HRC-S and Swift/XRT observations for the 2015 outburst of the high-mass X-ray binary pulsar in the Small Magellanic Cloud, SMC X-2. While previous studies suggested that either an O star or a Be star in the field is the high-mass companion of SMC X-2, our Chandra/HRC-S image unambiguously confirms the O-type star as the true optical counterpart. Using the Swift/XRT observations, we extracted accurate orbital parameters of the pulsar binary through a time of arrivals analysis. In addition, there were two X-ray dips near the inferior conjunction, which are possibly caused by eclipses or an ionized high-density shadow wind near the companion’s surface. Finally, we propose that an outflow driven by the radiation pressure from day ∼10 played an important role in the X-ray/optical evolution of the outburst.

  2. Discovery of spin-up in the X-ray pulsar companion of the hot subdwarf HD 49798

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mereghetti, Sandro; Pintore, Fabio; Esposito, Paolo; La Palombara, Nicola; Tiengo, Andrea; Israel, Gian Luca; Stella, Luigi

    2016-06-01

    The hot subdwarf HD 49798 has an X-ray emitting compact companion with a spin-period of 13.2 s and a dynamically measured mass of 1.28 ± 0.05 M⊙, consistent with either a neutron star or a white dwarf. Using all the available XMM-Newton and Swift observations of this source, we could perform a phase-connected timing analysis extending back to the ROSAT data obtained in 1992. We found that the pulsar is spinning up at a rate of (2.15 ± 0.05) × 10-15 s s-1. This result is best interpreted in terms of a neutron star accreting from the wind of its subdwarf companion, although the remarkably steady period derivative over more than 20 yr is unusual in wind-accreting neutron stars. The possibility that the compact object is a massive white dwarf accreting through a disc cannot be excluded, but it requires a larger distance and/or properties of the stellar wind of HD 49798 different from those derived from the modelling of its optical/UV spectra.

  3. Understanding X-ray Reflection as a Probe of Accreting Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilkins, Dan

    2014-01-01

    Active galactic nuclei (AGN) are some of the most luminous objects we see in the Universe, powered by the accretion of matter onto a supermassive black hole in the centre of a galaxy, yet many of the physical processes by which the energy is released and injected into the surroundings remain a mystery. X-rays are emitted from a ‘corona’ of energetic particles surrounding the black hole and as well as being observed directly, they are seen to be reflected from the accreting disc, producing a number of spectral features including emission lines that are broadened by relativistic effects in the proximity of the black hole. In my thesis, I develop methods through which detailed measurement of the reflected X-rays from the accretion disc can be used to probe the innermost regions of accretion flow and corona, right down to the innermost stable orbit and the event horizon. Novel spectral analysis techniques allow us to reconstruct, from the observed relativistic X-ray reflection spectrum the spatially resolved illumination pattern of the accretion disc and will discuss how comparing this to the results of systematic general relativistic ray tracing simulations I have developed, we are able to constrain the location and geometry of the X-ray emitting corona and understand the dramatic change of the narrow line Seyfert 1 galaxy 1H 0707-495 into an extremely low flux state in terms of a collapse in the corona. I will discuss how measurements of the X-ray variability, specifically the reverberation time lags that are observed between variability in the directly observed X-rays from the corona and those reflected from the accretion disc add a further dimension to the study of accreting black holes, letting us not only build up a three dimensional image of the immediate vicinity of the black hole but also to probe mechanisms by which the energy is released from the accretion flow; techniques that will let us exploit not just current instrumentation but future proposed X-ray

  4. Irradiated, colour-temperature-corrected accretion discs in ultraluminous X-ray sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sutton, Andrew D.; Done, Chris; Roberts, Timothy P.

    2014-11-01

    Although attempts have been made to constrain the stellar types of optical counterparts to ultraluminous X-ray sources (ULXs), the detection of optical variability instead suggests that they may be dominated by reprocessed emission from X-rays which irradiate the outer accretion disc. Here, we report results from a combined X-ray and optical spectral study of a sample of ULXs, which were selected for having broadened disc-like X-ray spectra and known optical counterparts. We simultaneously fit optical and X-ray data from ULXs with a new spectral model of emission from an irradiated, colour-temperature-corrected accretion disc around a black hole, with a central Comptonizing corona. We find that the ULXs require reprocessing fractions of ˜10-3, which is similar to sub-Eddington thermal dominant state black hole binaries (BHBs), but less than has been reported for ULXs with soft ultraluminous X-ray spectra. We suggest that the reprocessing fraction may be due to the opposing effects of self-shielding in a geometrically thick supercritical accretion disc and reflection from far above the central black hole by optically thin material ejected in a natal super-Eddington wind. Then, the higher reprocessing fractions reported for ULXs with wind-dominated X-ray spectra may be due to enhanced scattering on to the outer disc via the stronger wind in these objects. Alternatively, the accretion discs in these ULXs may not be particularly geometrically thick, rather they may be similar in this regard to the thermal dominant state BHBs.

  5. Outburst of the 2 s Anomalous X-ray Pulsar 1E 1547.0-5408

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, J. P.; Gotthelf, E. V.; Camilo, F.; Reynolds, J.; Ransom, S. M.

    2008-01-01

    Following our discovery of radio pulsations from the newly recognized anomalous X-ray pulsar (AXP) 1E 1547.0-5408, we initiated X-ray monitoring with the Swift X-ray telescope and obtained a single target-of-opportunity observation with the Newton X-ray Multi-Mirror Mission (XMM-Newton). In comparison with its historic minimum flux of 3 x 10(exp -l3)ergs/sq cm/s, the source was found to be in a record high state, f(sub x)(1-8 keV) = 5 x 10(exp -12)ergs/sq cm/s, or L(sub x) = 1.7 x 10(exp 35)(d/9 kpc )(sup 2)ergs/s, and declining by 25% in 1 month. Extrapolating the decay, we bound the total energy in this outburst to 1042 ergs < E < ergs. The spectra (fitted with a Comptonized blackbody) show that an increase in the temperature and area of a hot region, to 0.5 keV and -16% of the surface area of the neutron star, respectively, are primarily responsible for its increase in luminosity. The energy, spectrum, and timescale of decay are consistent with a deep crustal heating event, similar to an interpretation of the X-ray turn-on of the transient AXP XTE J18 10- 197. Simultaneous with the 4.6 hr ATdA4-Newton observation, we observed at 6.4 GHz with the Parkes telescope, measuring the phase relationship of the radio and X-ray pulse. The X-ray pulsed fraction of 1E 1547.0-5408 is only approx. 7 %, while its radio pulse is relatively broad for such a slow pulsar, which may indicate a nearly aligned rotator. As also inferred from the transient behavior of XTE J18 10-197, the only other AXP known to emit in the radio, the magnetic field rearrangement responsible for this X-ray outburst of 1E 1547.0-5408 is probably the cause of its radio turn-on.

  6. Accretion mode of the Ultra-Luminous X-ray source M82 X-2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karino, S.; Miller, J. C.

    2016-05-01

    Periodic pulsations have been found in emission from the ultra-luminous X-ray source (ULX) M82 X-2, strongly suggesting that the emitter is a rotating neutron star rather than a black hole. However, the radiation mechanisms and accretion mode involved have not yet been clearly established. In this paper, we examine the applicability to this object of standard accretion modes for high mass X-ray binaries (HMXBs). We find that spherical wind accretion, which drives OB-type HMXBs, cannot apply here but that there is a natural explanation in terms of an extension of the picture for standard Be-type HMXBs. We show that a neutron star with a moderately strong magnetic field, accreting from a disc-shaped wind emitted by a Be-companion, could be compatible with the observed relation between spin and orbital period. A Roche lobe overflow picture is also possible under certain conditions.

  7. Towards practical autonomous deep-space navigation using X-Ray pulsar timing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shemar, Setnam; Fraser, George; Heil, Lucy; Hindley, David; Martindale, Adrian; Molyneux, Philippa; Pye, John; Warwick, Robert; Lamb, Andrew

    2016-07-01

    We investigate the feasibility of deep-space navigation using the highly stable periodic signals from X-ray pulsars in combination with dedicated instrumentation on the spacecraft: a technique often referred to as `XNAV'. The results presented are based on the outputs from a study undertaken for the European Space Agency. The potential advantages of this technique include increased spacecraft autonomy and lower mission operating costs. Estimations of navigation uncertainties have been obtained using simulations of different pulsar combinations and navigation strategies. We find that the pulsar PSR B1937 + 21 has potential to allow spacecraft positioning uncertainties of ~2 and ~5 km in the direction of the pulsar after observation times of 10 and 1 h respectively, for ranges up to 30 AU. This could be achieved autonomously on the spacecraft using a focussing X-ray instrument of effective area ~50 cm2 together with a high performance atomic clock. The Mercury Imaging X-ray Spectrometer (MIXS) instrument, due to be launched on the ESA/JAXA BepiColombo mission to Mercury in 2018, is an example of an instrument that may be further developed as a practical telescope for XNAV. For a manned mission to Mars, where an XNAV system could provide valuable redundancy, observations of the three pulsars PSR B1937 + 21, B1821-24 and J0437-4715 would enable a three-dimensional positioning uncertainty of ~30 km for up to 3 months without the need to contact Earth-based systems. A lower uncertainty may be achieved, for example, by use of extended observations or, if feasible, by use of a larger instrument. X-ray instrumentation suitable for use in an operational XNAV subsystem must be designed to require only modest resources, especially in terms of size, mass and power. A system with a focussing optic is required in order to reduce the sky and particle background against which the source must be measured. We examine possible options for future developments in terms of simpler, lower

  8. Chandra X-Ray Observatory Observations of the Globular Cluster M28 and its Milisecond Pulsar PSR B1821-24

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Becker, Werner; Swartz, Douglas A.; Pavlov, George G.; Elsner, Ronald F.; Grindlay, Jonathan; Mignani, Roberto; Tennant, Allyn F.; Backer, Don; Pulone, Luigi; Testa, Vincenzo

    2003-01-01

    We report here the results of the first Chandra X-Ray Observatory observations of the globular cluster M28 (NGC 6626). We detect 46 X-ray sources, of which 12 lie within 1 core radius of the center. We show that the apparently extended X-ray core emission seen with the ROSAT HRI is due to the superposition of multiple discrete sources, for which we determine the X-ray luminosity function down to a limit of about 6 x 10(exp 30) ergs/s. We measure the radial distribution of the X-ray sources and fit it to a King profile finding a core radius of r(sub c,X) approx. = 5 11". We measure for the first time the unconfused phase-averaged X-ray spectrum of the 3.05 ms pulsar B1821-24 and find that it is best described by a power law with photon index Gamma approx. = 1.2. We find marginal evidence of an emission line centered at 3.3 keV in the pulsar spectrum, which could be interpreted as cyclotron emission from a corona above the pulsar s polar cap if the magnetic field is strongly different from a centered dipole. The unabsorbed pulsar flux in the 0.1 - 8.0 keV band is approx. = 3.5 x 10(exp -13) ergs/s sq cm. We present spectral analyses of the five brightest unidentified sources. Based on the spectral parameters of the brightest of these sources, we suggest that it is a transiently accreting neutron star in a low-mass X-ray binary, in quiescence. Fitting its spectrum with a hydrogen neutron star atmosphere model yields the effective temperature T(sub eff, sup infinity) = 90(sup +30, sub -10) eV and the radius R(sub NS, sup infinity) = 14.5(sup +6.9, sub -3.8) km. In addition to the resolved sources, we detect fainter, unresolved X-ray emission from the central core. Using the Chandra-derived positions, we also report on the result of searching archival Hubble Space Telescope data for possible optical counterparts.

  9. Constraining compactness and magnetic field geometry of X-ray pulsars using pulse profile statistics

    SciTech Connect

    Annala, Marja; Poutanen, Juri

    2010-07-15

    We use the statistics of 131 X-ray pulsar light curves in order to constrain the neutron star compactness and the inclination of the magnetic dipole. The X-ray pulse profiles are classified according to the number of pulses seen during one period, dividing them into two classes, single- and double-peaked. The relative fraction of pulsars in these classes is compared with the probabilities predicted by a theoretical model for different types of pencil-beam patterns. Our results show that a statistic of pulse profiles does not constrain compactness of the neutron stars. In contrast to the previous claim, the data do not require the magnetic inclination to be confined in a narrow interval but instead the magnetic dipole can have arbitrary inclinations to the rotational axis. The observed fractions of different types of light curves can be explained by taking into account the X-ray detector sensitivity (i.e. detection threshold for weak pulses), which decreases the fraction of the observed double-peaked light curves.

  10. Discovery of Radio Emission From Transient Anomalous X-Ray Pulsar XTE J1810-197

    SciTech Connect

    Halpern, J P; Gotthelf, E V; Becker, R H; Helfand, D J; White, R L

    2005-10-25

    We report the first detection of radio emission from any anomalous X-ray pulsar (AXP). Data from the Very Large Array (VLA) MAGPIS survey with angular resolution 6'' reveals a point-source of flux density 4.5 {+-} 0.5 mJy at 1.4 GHz at the precise location of the 5.54 s pulsar XTE J1810-197. This is greater than upper limits from all other AXPs and from quiescent states of soft gamma-ray repeaters (SGRs). The detection was made in 2004 January, 1 year after the discovery of XTE J1810-197 during its only known outburst. Additional VLA observations both before and after the outburst yield only upper limits that are comparable to or larger than the single detection, neither supporting nor ruling out a decaying radio afterglow related to the X-ray turn-on. Another hypothesis is that, unlike the other AXPs and SGRs, XTE J1810-197 may power a radio synchrotron nebula by the interaction of its particle wind with a moderately dense environment that was not evacuated by previous activity from this least luminous, in X-rays, of the known magnetars.

  11. Time-dependent X-ray emission from unstable accretion disks around black holes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mineshige, Shin; Kim, Soon-Wook; Wheeler, J. Craig

    1990-01-01

    The spectral evolution of accretion disks in X-ray binaries containing black holes is studied, based on the disk instability model. The thermal transition of the outer portions of the disk controls the mass flow rate into the inner portions of the disk, thus modulating the soft X-ray flux which is thought to arise from the inner disk. Calculated soft X-ray spectra are consistent with the observations of the X-ray transient A0620 - 00 and especially ASM 2000 + 25, the soft X-ray spectra of which are well fitted by blackbody radiation with a fixed inner edge of the disk, Rin, and with monotonically decreasing temperature at Rin with time. Since the gas pressure is always dominant over the radiation pressure during the decay in these models, a two-temperature region is difficult to create. Instead, it is suggested that hard X-rays are generated in a hot (kT greater than 10 keV) accretion disk corona above the cool (kT less than 1 keV) disk.

  12. Accretion and Nuclear Activity of Quiescent Supermassive Black Holes. I. X-Ray Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soria, R.; Fabbiano, G.; Graham, Alister W.; Baldi, A.; Elvis, M.; Jerjen, H.; Pellegrini, S.; Siemiginowska, A.

    2006-03-01

    We have studied the nuclear activity in a sample of six quiescent early-type galaxies, with new Chandra data and archival HST optical images. Their nuclear sources have X-ray luminosities ~1038-1039 ergs s-1 (LX/LEdd~10-8 to 10-7) and colors or spectra consistent with accreting supermassive black holes (SMBHs), except for the nucleus of NGC 4486B, which is softer than typical AGN spectra. In a few cases, the X-ray morphology of the nuclear sources shows hints of marginally extended structures, in addition to the surrounding diffuse thermal emission from hot gas, which is detectable on scales >~1 kpc. In one case (NGC 5845), a dusty disk may partially obstruct our direct view of the SMBH. We have estimated the temperature and density of the hot interstellar medium, which is one major source of fuel for the accreting SMBH; typical central densities are ne~(0.02+/-0.01) cm-3. Assuming that the hot gas is captured by the SMBH at the Bondi rate, we show that the observed X-ray luminosities are too faint to be consistent with standard disk accretion, but brighter than predicted by radiatively inefficient solutions (e.g., advection-dominated accretion flows [ADAFs]). In total, there are ~20 galaxies for which SMBH mass, hot gas density, and nuclear X-ray luminosity are simultaneously known. In some cases, the nuclear sources are brighter than predicted by the ADAF model; in other cases, they are consistent or fainter. We discuss the apparent lack of correlations between Bondi rate and X-ray luminosity and suggest that, in order to understand the observed distribution, we need to know two additional parameters: the amount of gas supplied by the stellar population inside the accretion radius, and the fraction (possibly <<1) of the total gas available that is accreted by the SMBH. We leave a detailed study of these issues to a subsequent paper.

  13. MN Lup: X-RAYS FROM A WEAKLY ACCRETING T TAURI STAR

    SciTech Connect

    Guenther, H. M.; Wolk, S. J.; Wolter, U.; Robrade, J.

    2013-07-01

    Young T Tauri stars (TTS) are surrounded by an accretion disk, which over time disperses due to photoevaporation, accretion, and possibly planet formation. The accretion shock on the central star produces an UV/optical veiling continuum, line emission, and X-ray signatures. As the accretion rate decreases, the impact on the central star must change. In this article we study MN Lup, a young star where no indications of a disk are seen in IR observations. We present XMM-Newton and VLT/UVES observations, some of them taken simultaneously. The X-ray data show that MN Lup is an active star with L{sub X} /L{sub bol} close to the saturation limit. However, we find high densities (n{sub e} > 3 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 10} cm{sup -3}) in the X-ray grating spectrum. This can be well fitted using an accretion shock model with an accretion rate of 2 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -11} M{sub Sun} yr{sup -1}. Despite the simple H{alpha} line profile which has a broad component, but no absorption signatures as typically seen on accreting TTS, we find rotational modulation in Ca II K and in photospheric absorption lines. These line profile modulations do not clearly indicate the presence of a localized hot accretion spot on the star. In the H{alpha} line we see a prominence in absorption about 2R{sub *} above the stellar surface-the first of its kind on a TTS. MN Lup is also the only TTS where accretion is seen, but no dust disk is detected that could fuel it. We suggest that MN Lup presents a unique and short-lived state in the disk evolution. It may have lost its dust disk only recently and is now accreting the remaining gas at a very low rate.

  14. Spectroscopy of Low Mass X-Ray Binaries: New Insights into Accretion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vrtilek, Saeqa Dil; Mushotzky, Richard F. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    This project is to observe two low mass X-ray binaries, chosen for their X-ray brightness, low column density, and diversity of accretion behavior. The high spectral resolution of the RGS, the broad energy range and tremendous collecting power of EPIC, and simultaneous optical monitoring with the OM are particularly well-suited to these studies. The second of two objects was not observed until September of 2002. Data analysis for the new observation is underway. over the next year we will: investigate the physical conditions of the emitting gas using emission and recombination line diagnostics to determine temperatures, densities, elemental abundances, and ionization structure; study the behavior of emission features as a function of binary orbit; and test and improve models of X-ray line emission developed by us over the past decade. We will gain insight on both the geometry of the accretion flow and on the evolutionary history of LMXBs.

  15. Spectroscopy of Low Mass X-Ray Binaries: New Insights into Accretion. Revised

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DilVrtilek, Saeqa; Mushotzky, Richard (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    This project is to observe two low mass X-ray binaries, chosen for their X-ray brightness, low column density, and diversity of accretion behavior. The high spectral resolution of the RGS, the broad energy range and tremendous collecting power of EPIC, and simultaneous optical monitoring with the OM are particularly well-suited to these studies. observation of one of the two objects has taken place and the data were received in late November. The second object is yet to be observed. Over the next year we will: investigate the physical conditions of the emitting gas using emission and recombination line diagnostics to determine temperatures, densities, elemental abundances, and ionization structure; study the behavior of emission features as a function of binary orbit; and test and improve models of X-ray line emission developed by us over the past decade. We will gain insight on both the geometry of the accretion flow and on the evolutionary history of LMXBs.

  16. AGN UV and X-ray luminosities in clumpy accretion flows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ishibashi, W.; Courvoisier, T. J.-L.

    2009-02-01

    We consider the fuelling of the central massive black hole in active galactic nuclei (AGN), through an inhomogeneous accretion flow. Performing simple analytical treatments, we show that shocks between elements (clumps) forming the accretion flow may account for the UV and X-ray emission in AGNs. In this picture, a cascade of shocks is expected, where optically thick shocks give rise to optical/UV emission, while optically thin shocks give rise to X-ray emission. The resulting blue bump temperature is found to be quite similar in different AGNs. We obtain that the ratio of X-ray luminosity to UV luminosity is smaller than unity, and that this ratio is smaller in massive objects compared to less massive sources. This is in agreement with the observed L_X/L_UV ratio and suggests a possible interpretation of the α_OX-l_UV anticorrelation.

  17. X-Ray Spectra from MHD Simulations of Accreting Black Holes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schnittman, Jeremy D.; Noble, Scott C.; Krolik, Julian H.

    2011-01-01

    We present new global calculations of X-ray spectra from fully relativistic magneto-hydrodynamic (MHO) simulations of black hole (BH) accretion disks. With a self consistent radiative transfer code including Compton scattering and returning radiation, we can reproduce the predominant spectral features seen in decades of X-ray observations of stellar-mass BHs: a broad thermal peak around 1 keV, power-law continuum up to >100 keV, and a relativistically broadened iron fluorescent line. By varying the mass accretion rate, different spectral states naturally emerge: thermal-dominant, steep power-law, and low/hard. In addition to the spectral features, we briefly discuss applications to X-ray timing and polarization.

  18. Probing the Accretion Geometry of Black Holes with X-Ray Polarization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schnitman, Jeremy D.

    2011-01-01

    In the coming years, new space missions will be able to measure X-ray polarization at levels of 1% or better in the approx.1-10 keV energy band. In particular, X-ray polarization is an ideal tool for determining the nature of black hole (BH) accretion disks surrounded by hot coronae. Using a Monte Carlo radiation transport code in full general relativity, we calculate the spectra and polarization features of these BH systems. At low energies, the signal is dominated by the thermal flux coming directly from the optically thick disk. At higher energies, the thermal seed photons have been inverse-Compton scattered by the corona, often reflecting back off the disk before reaching the observer, giving a distinctive polarization signature. By measuring the degree and angle of this X-ray polarization, we can infer the BH inclination, the emission geometry of the accretion flow, and also determine the spin of the black hole.

  19. Evidence of Fast Magnetic Field Evolution in an Accreting Millisecond Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patruno, A.

    2012-07-01

    The large majority of neutron stars (NSs) in low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs) have never shown detectable pulsations despite several decades of intense monitoring. The reason for this remains an unsolved problem that hampers our ability to measure the spin frequency of most accreting NSs. The accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar (AMXP) HETE J1900.1-2455 is an intermittent pulsar that exhibited pulsations at about 377 Hz for the first two months and then turned into a nonpulsating source. Understanding why this happened might help us to understand why most LMXBs do not pulsate. We present a seven-year coherent timing analysis of data taken with the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer. We discover new sporadic pulsations that are detected on a baseline of about 2.5 years. We find that the pulse phases anti-correlate with the X-ray flux as previously discovered in other AMXPs. We place stringent upper limits of 0.05% rms on the pulsed fraction when pulsations are not detected and identify an enigmatic pulse phase drift of ~180° in coincidence with the first disappearance of pulsations. Thanks to the new pulsations we measure a long term spin frequency derivative whose strength decays exponentially with time. We interpret this phenomenon as evidence of magnetic field burial.

  20. The Orbital Period of the Accreting Pulsar GX 1+4.

    PubMed

    Pereira; Braga; Jablonski

    1999-12-01

    We report strong evidence for a approximately 304 day periodicity in the spin history of the accretion-powered pulsar GX 1+4 that is most probably associated with the orbital period of the system. We have used data from the Burst and Transient Source Experiment on the Compton Gamma-Ray Observatory to show a clear periodic modulation of the pulsar frequency from 1991 to date, in excellent agreement with the ephemeris proposed by Cutler, Dennis, & Dolan in 1986. Our results indicate that the orbital period of GX 1+4 is 303.8+/-1.1 days, making it the widest known low-mass X-ray binary system by more than 1 order of magnitude and putting this long-standing question to rest. A likely scenario for this system is an elliptical orbit in which the neutron star decreases its spin-down rate (or even exhibits a momentary spin-up behavior) at periastron passages due to the higher torque exerted by the accretion disk onto the magnetosphere of the neutron star. These results are not inconsistent with either the X-ray pulsed flux light curve measured by BATSE during the same epoch or the X-ray flux history from the All-Sky Monitor on board the Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer. PMID:10550289

  1. A Broad-Band X-Ray Study of the Geminga Pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, Jules P.; Wang, F. Y.-H.; Oliversen, Ronald (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    We present a comprehensive study of the Geminga pulsar at energies 0.1-10 keV using data from the ASCA, ROSAT, and EUVE satellites. The bulk of the soft X-ray flux can be parameterized as a blackbody of T = (5.6 +/- 0.6) x 10(exp 5) K, occupying a fraction 0. 10 - 0.64 of the surface area of the neutron star at the parallax distance of 160 pc. The ASCA detection of Geminga resolves the nature of the harder X-ray component previously discovered by ROSAT in favor of nonthermal emission, rather than thermal emission from a heated polar cap. The hard X-ray spectrum can be fitted by a power-law of energy index 1.0 +/- 0.5. The hard X-ray light curve has a strong main peak and a weak secondary peak; its total pulsed fraction is = 55%. Three ROSAT PSPC observations show significant variability of Geminga's light curve. In particular, a peculiar energy dependence of the modulation in the soft X-ray component, dubbed the "Geminga effect" in the original PSPC data, is not present in later observations. In addition, fine structure in the soft X-ray light curve, interpreted as eclipses due to cyclotron resonance scattering by a plasma screen on the closed magnetic field lines, almost disappeared in the most recent observations. All of the variable properties of Geminga can probably be associated with the nonthermal process that supplies e(sup +, sup -) pairs to its inner magnetosphere.

  2. Quiescent accretion disks in black hole X-ray novae

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Orosz, Jerome A.; Bailyn, Charles D.; Remillard, Ronald A.; Mcclintock, Jeffrey E.; Foltz, Craig B.

    1994-01-01

    We present detailed time-resolved spectroscopy of the Balmer emission lines from two black hole binary systems in quiescence, A0620-00 and Nova Muscae 1991. We find extraordinary similarities between the two systems. There are 30-40 km/s velocity variations of the emission lines over the orbital period, the phases of which are not aligned with the expected phase of the motion of the compact primary. Detailed modeling of both systems is complicated by variable hot spot components, regions of optical thickness, and intermittent excess emission in the blue line wings of the H-alpha lines. Both sources also display low velocities at the outer edge of the accretion disk, implying a large primary Roche lobe and extreme mass ratios. These complications suggest that although simple optically thin, Keplerian alpha-disk models provide a useful parameterization of emission lines from these systems, the straightforward physical models they imply should be treated with great caution.

  3. The feedback of type-I bursts to the corona and the accretion process in X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, J.; Zhang, S.; Torres, D.; Chen, Y.; Ji, L.

    2014-07-01

    We discuss the interaction between the soft X-ray photons and the corona / accretion disk during type-I X-ray bursts. Up to date, a hard X-ray shortage and fast recovery during the evolution of bursts have been found in 6 sources. These observations promote a plausible interpretation based on the position and origin of the corona. We also note that type-I X-ray bursts embedded in the banana state of an outburst seem to deviate from a blackbody spectrum, which may hint for a temporary increased accretion rate in the accretion disk during type-I X-ray bursts. These results could be consistently explained by the feedback of type-I X-ray bursts to the accretion process.

  4. SXP 1062, a young Be X-ray binary pulsar with long spin period. Implications for the neutron star birth spin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haberl, F.; Sturm, R.; Filipović, M. D.; Pietsch, W.; Crawford, E. J.

    2012-01-01

    Context. The Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC) is ideally suited to investigating the recent star formation history from X-ray source population studies. It harbours a large number of Be/X-ray binaries (Be stars with an accreting neutron star as companion), and the supernova remnants can be easily resolved with imaging X-ray instruments. Aims: We search for new supernova remnants in the SMC and in particular for composite remnants with a central X-ray source. Methods: We study the morphology of newly found candidate supernova remnants using radio, optical and X-ray images and investigate their X-ray spectra. Results: Here we report on the discovery of the new supernova remnant around the recently discovered Be/X-ray binary pulsar CXO J012745.97-733256.5 = SXP 1062 in radio and X-ray images. The Be/X-ray binary system is found near the centre of the supernova remnant, which is located at the outer edge of the eastern wing of the SMC. The remnant is oxygen-rich, indicating that it developed from a type Ib event. From XMM-Newton observations we find that the neutron star with a spin period of 1062 s (the second longest known in the SMC) shows a very high average spin-down rate of 0.26 s per day over the observing period of 18 days. Conclusions: From the currently accepted models, our estimated age of around 10 000-25 000 years for the supernova remnant is not long enough to spin down the neutron star from a few 10 ms to its current value. Assuming an upper limit of 25 000 years for the age of the neutron star and the extreme case that the neutron star was spun down by the accretion torque that we have measured during the XMM-Newton observations since its birth, a lower limit of 0.5 s for the birth spin period is inferred. For more realistic, smaller long-term average accretion torques our results suggest that the neutron star was born with a correspondingly longer spin period. This implies that neutron stars in Be/X-ray binaries with long spin periods can be much younger

  5. Timing analysis of binary X ray pulsars observed by HEAO 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Soong, Y.; Swank, J. H.

    1989-01-01

    Timing analysis of the pointed observations of 5 selected binary X ray pulsars, in two categories of disk-fed and wind-fed sources, by HEAO 1 A-2 is reported. The power spectral analysis was performed on the data in the frequency range from approx. 1 MHz to 6.25 Hz. The coherent signal of the pulsation, the continuum of the power spectrum, varies in time and differs among sources. Quasi-Periodic Oscillation (QPO) is probably related to a fast spinning but weakly magnetized neutron star in the low mass X ray binaries. QPO was searched for in this frequency range to see if scaling laws exist among these two systems which may have possessed different order of magnitude of magnetic field strengths and the inner disk radii. One possible QPO is found centering at 0.062 Hz in 4U0115+63 during a flare.

  6. Accretion Disk Signatures in Type I X-Ray Bursts: Prospects for Future Missions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keek, L.; Wolf, Z.; Ballantyne, D. R.

    2016-07-01

    Type I X-ray bursts and superbursts from accreting neutron stars illuminate the accretion disk and produce a reflection signal that evolves as the burst fades. Examining the evolution of reflection features in the spectra will provide insight into the burst–disk interaction, a potentially powerful probe of accretion disk physics. At present, reflection has been observed during only two bursts of exceptional duration. We investigate the detectability of reflection signatures with four of the latest well-studied X-ray observatory concepts: Hitomi, Neutron Star Interior Composition Explorer (NICER), Athena, and Large Observatory For X-ray Timing (LOFT). Burst spectra are modeled for different values for the flux, temperature, and the disk ionization parameter, which are representative for most known bursts and sources. The effective area and throughput of a Hitomi-like telescope are insufficient for characterizing burst reflection features. NICER and Athena will detect reflection signatures in Type I bursts with peak fluxes ≳10‑7.5 erg cm‑2 s‑1 and also effectively constrain the reflection parameters for bright bursts with fluxes of ∼10‑7 erg cm‑2 s‑1 in exposures of several seconds. Thus, these observatories will provide crucial new insight into the interaction of accretion flows and X-ray bursts. For sources with low line-of-sight absorption, the wide bandpass of these instruments allows for the detection of soft X-ray reflection features, which are sensitive to the disk metallicity and density. The large collecting area that is part of the LOFT design would revolutionize the field by tracing the evolution of the accretion geometry in detail throughout short bursts.

  7. X-RAY PHOTOIONIZED BUBBLE IN THE WIND OF VELA X-1 PULSAR SUPERGIANT COMPANION

    SciTech Connect

    Krticka, Jiri; Skalicky, Jan; Kubat, Jiri

    2012-10-01

    Vela X-1 is the archetype of high-mass X-ray binaries (HMXBs), composed of a neutron star and a massive B supergiant. The supergiant is a source of a strong radiatively driven stellar wind. The neutron star sweeps up this wind and creates a huge amount of X-rays as a result of energy release during the process of wind accretion. Here, we provide detailed NLTE models of the Vela X-1 envelope. We study how the X-rays photoionize the wind and destroy the ions responsible for the wind acceleration. The resulting decrease of the radiative force explains the observed reduction of the wind terminal velocity in a direction to the neutron star. The X-rays create a distinct photoionized region around the neutron star filled with a stagnating flow. The existence of such photoionized bubbles is a general property of HMXBs. We unveil a new principle governing these complex objects, according to which there is an upper limit to the X-ray luminosity the compact star can have without suspending the wind due to inefficient line driving.

  8. X-Ray Photoionized Bubble in the Wind of Vela X-1 Pulsar Supergiant Companion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krtička, Jiří; Kubát, Jiří; Skalický, Jan

    2012-10-01

    Vela X-1 is the archetype of high-mass X-ray binaries (HMXBs), composed of a neutron star and a massive B supergiant. The supergiant is a source of a strong radiatively driven stellar wind. The neutron star sweeps up this wind and creates a huge amount of X-rays as a result of energy release during the process of wind accretion. Here, we provide detailed NLTE models of the Vela X-1 envelope. We study how the X-rays photoionize the wind and destroy the ions responsible for the wind acceleration. The resulting decrease of the radiative force explains the observed reduction of the wind terminal velocity in a direction to the neutron star. The X-rays create a distinct photoionized region around the neutron star filled with a stagnating flow. The existence of such photoionized bubbles is a general property of HMXBs. We unveil a new principle governing these complex objects, according to which there is an upper limit to the X-ray luminosity the compact star can have without suspending the wind due to inefficient line driving.

  9. 41. 5 day binary x-ray pulsar 4U 1223-62 (GX 301-2)

    SciTech Connect

    White, N.E.; Swank, J.H.

    1984-12-15

    The orbital period of the 700 s X-ray pulsar 4U 1223-62 (GX 301-2) has been determined to be 41.5 days from regular X-ray outbursts reported by Watson, Warwick, and Corbet in 1982. We reexamine Ariel 5 and SAS 3 X-ray pulse timing data to deduce the orbital elements of this system assuming a 41.5 day orbital period. The correction of an error in an earlier pulse timing analysis has reduced a previously reported inconsistency between the X-ray photometric ephemeris and the orbital solution deduced from the pulse timings.

  10. X-ray studies of the termination shock of the pulsar wind in the Crab Nebula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mori, K.; Burrows, D.; Shibata, S.; Pavlov, G.; Hester, J.; Tsunemi, H.

    Chandra observations have discovered a long-sought termination shock of the pulsar wind in the Crab Nebula. The shock is barely seen in the optical wavelengths in contrast with the wisps, which emerge from the shock but can be seen in both the X-ray and optical. We present spectral and spatial analysis of the shock with Chandra. Especially, spectral information is obtained for the first time without being bothered by pile-up. Spectral analysis of other fine structures including "arcs" which are seen in north-eastern part of the torus is also shown. We discuss those results along with large scale spectral variations over the nebula.

  11. Evidence of pulsed X-ray emission from radio pulsar PSR1951+32

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Lingxiang; Li, Tipei; Sun, Xuejun; Ma, Yugian; Wu, Mei

    1994-03-01

    Evidence of X-ray pulsations from PSR1951+32 have been obtained in both EINSTEIN IPC (Image Proportional Counter) and HRI (High Resolution Imager) data in our analysis of Einstein Observatory data on CTB 80 area. The phase light curves of these two datasets show similar single peak structure. The period values are significantly different from those predicted by radio observations processed about 7 years later, and shows the spin rate of the pulsar in April 1980 is higher than that in October 1979. Possible explanations for this phenomenon are discussed.

  12. A Optical Synchrotron Nebula around the X-Ray Pulsar 0540-693

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chanan, G.; Helfand, D.; Reynolds, S.

    The authors report the discovery of extended optical continuum emission around the recently discovered 50 ms X-ray pulsar in the supernova remnant 0540-693. Exposures in blue and red broadband filters made with the CTIO 4 m telescope and prime focus CCD show a center-brightened but clearly extended nebula about 4arcsec in diameter (FWHM), while an image in an [O III] filter shows an 8arcsec diameter shell (as reported earlier) which encloses the continuum source. 0540-693 is a system very similar to the Crab nebula and represents the second detection of optical synchrotron radiation in a supernova remnant.

  13. On the Extended Emission of the Anomalous X-ray Pulsar IE 1547.0-5408

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olausen, S. A.; Kaspi, V. M.; Ng, C. -Y.; Zhu, W. W.; Gavriil, F. P.; Woods, P. M.

    2012-01-01

    We present an analysis of the extended emission around the anomalous X-ray pulsar IE 1547.0-5408 using four XMM-Newton observations taken with the source in varying states of outburst as well as in quiescence. We find that the extended emission flux is highly variable and strongly correlated with the flux of the magnetar. Based on this result, as well as on spectral and energetic considerations, we conclude that the extended emission is dominated by a dust-scattering halo and not a pulsar wind nebula (P-VVN), as has been previously argued. We obtain an upper limit on the 2-10 keV flux of a possible PWN of 4.7 x 10(exp -14) erg/s/sq cm, three times less than the previously claimed value, implying an efficiency for conversion of spin-down energy into nebular luminosity of <9 x 10(exp -4) .

  14. EXTraS discovery of an 1.2-s X-ray pulsar in M 31

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Esposito, P.; Israel, G. L.; Belfiore, A.; Novara, G.; Sidoli, L.; Rodríguez Castillo, G. A.; De Luca, A.; Tiengo, A.; Haberl, F.; Salvaterra, R.; Read, A. M.; Salvetti, D.; Sandrelli, S.; Marelli, M.; Wilms, J.; D'Agostino, D.

    2016-03-01

    During a search for coherent signals in the X-ray archival data of XMM-Newton, we discovered a modulation at 1.2 s in 3XMM J004301.4+413017 (3X J0043), a source lying in the direction of an external arm of M 31. This short period indicates a neutron star (NS). Between 2000 and 2013, the position of 3X J0043 was imaged by public XMM-Newton observations 35 times. The analysis of these data allowed us to detect an orbital modulation at 1.27 d and study the long-term properties of the source. The emission of the pulsar was rather hard (most spectra are described by a power law with Γ < 1) and, assuming the distance to M 31, the 0.3-10 keV luminosity was variable, from ˜3 × 1037 to 2 × 1038 erg s-1. The analysis of optical data shows that, while 3X J0043 is likely associated to a globular cluster in M 31, a counterpart with V ≳ 22 outside the cluster cannot be excluded. Considering our findings, there are two main viable scenarios for 3X J0043: a peculiar low-mass X-ray binary, similar to 4U 1822-37 or 4U 1626-67, or an intermediate-mass X-ray binary resembling Her X-1. Regardless of the exact nature of the system, 3X J0043 is the first accreting NS in M 31 in which the spin period has been detected.

  15. X-RAY OBSERVATIONS OF THE YOUNG PULSAR J1357-6429 AND ITS PULSAR WIND NEBULA

    SciTech Connect

    Chang, Chulhoon; Pavlov, George G.; Kargaltsev, Oleg; Shibanov, Yurii A. E-mail: pavlov@astro.psu.edu E-mail: shib@astro.ioffe.rssi.ru

    2012-01-10

    We observed the young pulsar J1357-6429 with the Chandra and XMM-Newton observatories. The pulsar spectrum fits well a combination of an absorbed power-law model ({Gamma} = 1.7 {+-} 0.6) and a blackbody model (kT = 140{sup +60}{sub -40} eV, R {approx} 2 km at the distance of 2.5 kpc). Strong pulsations with pulsed fraction of 42% {+-} 5%, apparently associated with the thermal component, were detected in 0.3-1.1 keV. Surprisingly, the pulsed fraction at higher energies, 1.1-10 keV, appears to be smaller, 23% {+-} 4%. The small emitting area of the thermal component either corresponds to a hotter fraction of the neutron star surface or indicates inapplicability of the simplistic blackbody description. The X-ray images also reveal a pulsar wind nebula (PWN) with complex, asymmetric morphology comprised of a brighter, compact PWN surrounded by the fainter, much more extended PWN whose spectral slopes are {Gamma} = 1.3 {+-} 0.3 and {Gamma} = 1.7 {+-} 0.2, respectively. The extended PWN with the observed flux of {approx}7.5 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -13} erg s{sup -1} cm{sup -2} is a factor of 10 more luminous then the compact PWN. The pulsar and its PWN are located close to the center of the extended TeV source HESS J1356-645, which strongly suggests that the very high energy emission is powered by electrons injected by the pulsar long ago. The X-ray to TeV flux ratio, {approx}0.1, is similar to those of other relic PWNe. We found no other viable candidates to power the TeV source. A region of diffuse radio emission, offset from the pulsar toward the center of the TeV source, could be synchrotron emission from the same relic PWN rather than from the supernova remnant.

  16. X-Ray Spectra of Young Pulsars and Their Wind Nebulae: Dependence on Spin-Down Energy Loss Rate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gotthelf, E. V.

    2003-01-01

    An observational model is presented for the spectra of young rotation-powered pulsars and their nebulae based on a study of nine bright Crab-like pulsar systems observed with the Chandra X-ray observatory. A significant correlation is discovered between the X-ray spectra of these pulsars and that of their associated pulsar wind nebulae, both of which are observed to be a function of the spin-down energy loss rate, E. The 2-10 keV spectra of these objects are well characterized by an absorbed power-law model with photon indices, Gamma, in the range of 0.6 < Gamma (sub PSR) < 2.1 and 1.3 < Gamma(sub PWN) < 2.3, for the pulsars and their nebulae, respectively. A linear regression fit relating these two sets of indexes yields Gamma(sub PWN) = 0.91 +/- 0.18 + (0.66 +/- 0.11) Gamma (sub PSR), with a correlation coefficient of r = 0.97. The spectra of these pulsars are found to steepen as Gamma = Gamma(sub max) + alpha E (exp -1/2), with Gamma(sub max) providing an observational limit on the spectral slopes of young rotation-powered pulsars. These results reveal basic properties of young pulsar systems, allow new observational constraints on models of pulsar wind emission, and provide a means of predicting the energetics of pulsars lacking detected pulsations.

  17. Flares from Galactic Centre pulsars: a new class of X-ray transients?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giannios, Dimitrios; Lorimer, Duncan R.

    2016-06-01

    Despite intensive searches, the only pulsar within 0.1 pc of the central black hole in our Galaxy, Sgr A*, is a radio-loud magnetar. Since magnetars are rare among the Galactic neutron star population, and a large number of massive stars are already known in this region, the Galactic Centre (GC) should harbour a large number of neutron stars. Population syntheses suggest several thousand neutron stars may be present in the GC. Many of these could be highly energetic millisecond pulsars which are also proposed to be responsible for the GC gamma-ray excess. We propose that the presence of a neutron star within 0.03 pc from Sgr A* can be revealed by the shock interactions with the disc around the central black hole. As we demonstrate, these interactions result in observable transient non-thermal X-ray and gamma-ray emission over time-scales of months, provided that the spin-down luminosity of the neutron star is Lsd ˜ 1035 erg s-1. Current limits on the population of normal and millisecond pulsars in the GC region suggest that a number of such pulsars are present with such luminosities.

  18. DETECTION OF ACCRETION X-RAYS FROM QS Vir: CATACLYSMIC OR A LOT OF HOT AIR?

    SciTech Connect

    Matranga, Marco; Drake, Jeremy J.; Kashyap, Vinay; Steeghs, Danny

    2012-03-10

    An XMM-Newton observation of the nearby 'pre-cataclysmic' short-period (P{sub orb} = 3.62 hr) binary QS Vir (EC 13471-1258) revealed regular narrow X-ray eclipses when the white dwarf passed behind its M2-4 dwarf companion. The X-ray emission provides a clear signature of mass transfer and accretion onto the white dwarf. The low-resolution XMM-Newton EPIC spectra are consistent with a cooling flow model and indicate an accretion rate of M-dot = 1.7 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -13} M{sub sun} yr{sup -1}. At 48 pc distant, QS Vir is then the second nearest accreting cataclysmic variable known, with one of the lowest accretion rates found to date for a non-magnetic system. To feed this accretion through a wind would require a wind mass-loss rate of M-dot {approx}2 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -12} M{sub sun} yr{sup -1} if the accretion efficiency is of the order of 10%. Consideration of likely mass-loss rates for M dwarfs suggests this is improbably high and pure wind accretion unlikely. A lack of accretion disk signatures also presents some difficulties for direct Roche lobe overflow. We speculate that QS Vir is on the verge of Roche lobe overflow, and that the observed mass transfer could be supplemented by upward chromospheric flows on the M dwarf, analogous to spicules and mottles on the Sun, that escape the Roche surface to be subsequently swept up into the white dwarf Roche lobe. If so, QS Vir would be in a rare evolutionary phase lasting only a million years. The X-ray luminosity of the M dwarf estimated during primary eclipse is L{sub X} = 3 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 28} erg s{sup -1}, which is consistent with that of rapidly rotating 'saturated' K and M dwarfs.

  19. Luminosity-dependent change of the emission diagram in the X-ray pulsar 4U 1626-67

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koliopanos, Filippos; Gilfanov, Marat

    2016-03-01

    We detect variability of the Fe K α emission line in the spectrum of X-ray pulsar 4U 1626-67, correlated with changes in its luminosity and in the shape of its pulse profile. Analysis of archival Chandra and RXTE observations revealed the presence of an intrinsically narrow Fe K α emission line in the spectrum obtained during the source's current high-luminosity period. However, the line was not present during an XMM-Newton observation seven years earlier, when the source was ˜three times fainter. The line is resolved by the high-energy grating of Chandra at the 98 per cent confidence level, and its small intrinsic width, σ =36.4_{-11.3}^{+15.3} eV, suggests reflection off an accretion disc at the radius R≈ (7.5_{-3.8}^{+8.2})× 10^8 cm assuming a Keplerian disk, viewed at an inclination angle of 20°. This value is consistent with the radius of the magnetosphere of the pulsar, suggesting that the line originates near the inner edge of a disc that is truncated by the magnetic field of the neutron star. Timing analysis of the XMM-Newton and RXTE data revealed a major change in the pulse profile of the source from a distinct double-peaked shape during the high-luminosity state when the line was present, to a much more complex multipeak structure during the low-luminosity state. We argue that the appearance of the line and the change in the shape of the pulse profile are correlated and are the result of a major change in the emission diagram of the accretion column, from a pencil-beam pattern at low luminosity, to a fan-beam pattern at high luminosity.

  20. GIANT X-RAY BUMP IN GRB 121027A: EVIDENCE FOR FALL-BACK DISK ACCRETION

    SciTech Connect

    Wu Xuefeng; Hou Shujin; Lei Weihua E-mail: leiwh@hust.edu.cn

    2013-04-20

    A particularly interesting discovery in observations of GRB 121027A is that of a giant X-ray bump detected by the Swift/X-Ray Telescope. The X-ray afterglow re-brightens sharply at {approx}10{sup 3} s after the trigger by more than two orders of magnitude in less than 200 s. This X-ray bump lasts for more than 10{sup 4} s. It is quite different from typical X-ray flares. In this Letter we propose a fall-back accretion model to interpret this X-ray bump within the context of the collapse of a massive star for a long-duration gamma-ray burst. The required fall-back radius of {approx}3.5 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 10} cm and mass of {approx}0.9-2.6 M{sub Sun} imply that a significant part of the helium envelope should survive through the mass loss during the last stage of the massive progenitor of GRB 121027A.

  1. On the Dramatic Spin-up/Spin-Down Torque Reversals in Accreting Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nelson, Robert W.; Bildsten, Lars; Chakrabarty, Deepto; Finger, Mark H.; Koh, Danny T.; Prince, Thomas A.; Rubin, Bradley C.; Scott, D. Mathew; Vaughan, Brian A.; Wilson, Robert B.

    1997-01-01

    Dramatic torque reversals between spin-up and spin-down have been observed in half of the persistent X-ray pulsars monitored by the Burst and Transient Space Experiment (BATSE) all-sky monitor on the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory. Theoretical models developed to explain early pulsar timing data can explain spin-down torques via a disk-magnetosphere interaction if the star nearly corotates with the inner accretion disk. To produce the observed BATSE torque reversals, however, these equilibrium models require the disk to alternate between two mass accretion rates, with M+/- producing accretion torques of similar magnitude but always of opposite sign. Moreover, in at least one pulsar (GX 1+4) undergoing secular spin-down, the neutron star spins down faster during brief (approximately 20 day) hard X-ray flares-this is opposite the correlation expected from standard theory, assuming that BATSE pulsed flux increases with mass accretion rate. The 10 day to 10 yr intervals between torque reversals in these systems are much longer than any characteristic magnetic or viscous timescale near the inner disk boundary and are more suggestive of a global disk phenomenon. We discuss possible explanations of the observed torque behavior. Despite the preferred sense of rotation defined by the binary orbit, the BATSE observations are surprisingly consistent with an earlier suggestion for GX 1+4: the disks in these systems somehow alternate between episodes of prograde and retrograde rotation. We are unaware of any mechanism that could produce a stable retrograde disk in a binary undergoing Roche lobe overflow, but such flip-flop behavior does occur in numerical simulations of wind-fed systems. One possibility is that the disks in some of these binaries are fed by an X-ray-excited wind.

  2. Diagnosing the accretion flow in ultraluminous X-ray sources using soft X-ray atomic features

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Middleton, Matthew J.; Walton, Dominic J.; Fabian, Andrew; Roberts, Timothy P.; Heil, Lucy; Pinto, Ciro; Anderson, Gemma; Sutton, Andrew

    2015-12-01

    The lack of unambiguous detections of atomic features in the X-ray spectra of ultraluminous X-ray sources (ULXs) has proven a hindrance in diagnosing the nature of the accretion flow. The possible association of spectral residuals at soft energies with atomic features seen in absorption and/or emission and potentially broadened by velocity dispersion could therefore hold the key to understanding much about these enigmatic sources. Here we show for the first time that such residuals are seen in several sources and appear extremely similar in shape, implying a common origin. Via simple arguments we assert that emission from extreme colliding winds, absorption in a shell of material associated with the ULX nebula and thermal plasma emission associated with star formation are all highly unlikely to provide an origin. Whilst CCD spectra lack the energy resolution necessary to directly determine the nature of the features (i.e. formed of a complex of narrow lines or intrinsically broad lines), studying the evolution of the residuals with underlying spectral shape allows for an important, indirect test for their origin. The ULX NGC 1313 X-1 provides the best opportunity to perform such a test due to the dynamic range in spectral hardness provided by archival observations. We show through highly simplified spectral modelling that the strength of the features (in either absorption or emission) appears to anticorrelate with spectral hardness, which would rule out an origin via reflection of a primary continuum and instead supports a picture of atomic transitions in a wind or nearby material associated with such an outflow.

  3. The Quiescent X-Ray Emission of Axps and Sgrs -- Powered by Accretion from a Fallback Disk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Truemper, Joachim; Dennerl, Konrad; Kylafis, Nikos; Zezas, Andreas; Ertan, Ünal

    2015-01-01

    Disk accretion as a means to explain the persistent and transient X-ray emission of anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs) has been first proposed by van Paradijs et al. 1995, by Chatterjee et al. 2000 and by Alpar 2001. This class of models was developed further in a series of papers of the Istanbul group (for a recent summary see Ertan et al. 2009), and can be applied to soft gamma ray repeaters (SGRs) as well, which have similar timing and spectral properties as AXPs. The required magnetic dipole fields to explain the temporal evolution of the neutron stars are in the range of 1012-1013 G. Highly super-Eddington bursts observed in SGRs, could be produced by the decay of super-strong magnetic fields (1014-1015 G) residing in localized multi-pole fields. The presence of magnetar multipole fields close to the surface of the star is compatible with the fallback disk model since the disk matter interacts with the magnetic dipole field.

  4. Hot accretion flow with radiative cooling: state transitions in black hole X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Mao-Chun; Xie, Fu-Guo; Yuan, Ye-Fei; Gan, Zhaoming

    2016-06-01

    We investigate state transitions in black hole X-ray binaries through different parameters by using two-dimensional axisymmetric hydrodynamical simulation method. For radiative cooling in hot accretion flow, we take into account the bremsstrahlung, synchrotron and synchrotron self-Comptonization self-consistently in the dynamics. Our main result is that the state transitions occur when the accretion rate reaches a critical value dot{M} ˜ 3α dot{M}_Edd, above which cold and dense clumpy/filamentary structures are formed, embedded within the hot gas. We argued this mode likely corresponds to the proposed two-phase accretion model, which may be responsible for the intermediate state of black hole X-ray binaries. When the accretion rate becomes sufficiently high, the clumpy/filamentary structures gradually merge and settle down on to the mid-plane. Eventually the accretion geometry transforms to a disc-corona configuration. In summary, our results are consistent with the truncated accretion scenario for the state transition.

  5. X-ray and optical observations of accreting neutron stars and black holes and the construction and testing of the stellar x-ray polarimeter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tomsick, John Allen

    1999-10-01

    In the first part of this thesis, I present results from observations of accreting neutron stars and black hole candidates (BHCs). Through measurements of the physical parameters of neutron stars, including the mass, spin period and magnetic field strength, accreting neutron stars provide an opportunity to learn about matter at extremely high densities and in strong magnetic fields. Here, I study the neutron star X-ray binary XTE J2123-058. X-ray observations are used to estimate the neutron star spin period and magnetic field strength, and the measured spin period of 3.9 ms has implications for neutron star evolution. Results of optical observations provide some of the information necessary to eventually determine the neutron star mass. For BHC X-ray binaries, demonstrating the existence of the event horizon and measuring physical parameters of black holes are of great interest. In order to make progress toward these goals, it is necessary to understand the accretion processes and emission mechanisms that operate in these systems. For some accreting compact objects, significant changes in the X- ray emission properties are observed over time. Here, I study the changes in X-ray emission properties that occurred over three months for an accreting BHC, 4U 1630-47. I also include a study of sharp drops in the 4U 1630-47 X-ray flux (i.e. X-ray dips). X-ray dips provide an opportunity to constrain the sizes of the X-ray emission regions. The 4U 1630-47 X-ray dips provide evidence that one of the two X-ray emission components comes from within ten Schwarzschild radii of the compact object. In the second part of this thesis, I describe work I have done on the Stellar X-Ray Polarimeter (SXRP). The SXRP will be more than an order of magnitude more sensitive than any previous X-ray polarimeter in the 2-15 keV energy band and is expected to increase the number of sources with X-ray polarization detections from one, the Crab Nebula, to between 20 and 30. X-ray binaries will be

  6. DISCOVERY OF X-RAY PULSATION FROM THE GEMINGA-LIKE PULSAR PSR J2021+4026

    SciTech Connect

    Lin, L. C. C.; Hui, C. Y.; Seo, K. A.; Hu, C. P.; Chou, Y.; Wu, J. H. K.; Huang, R. H. H.; Trepl, L.; Takata, J.; Wang, Y.; Cheng, K. S.

    2013-06-10

    We report the discovery of an X-ray periodicity of {approx}265.3 ms from a deep XMM-Newton observation of the radio-quiet {gamma}-ray pulsar, PSR J2021+4026, located at the edge of the supernova remnant G78.2+2.1 ({gamma}-Cygni). The detected frequency is consistent with the {gamma}-ray pulsation determined by the observation of the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope at the same epoch. The X-ray pulse profile resembles the modulation of a hot spot on the surface of the neutron star. The phase-averaged spectral analysis also suggests that the majority of the observed X-rays have thermal origins. This is the third member in the class of radio-quiet pulsars with significant pulsations detected from both X-ray and {gamma}-ray regimes.

  7. Spectroscopy of Low Mass X-Ray Binaries: New Insights into Accretion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DilVrtilek, Saeqa; Mushotsky, Richard (Technical Monitor)

    2004-01-01

    This project is to observe two low mass X-ray binaries, chosen for their X-ray brightness, low column density, and diversity of accretion behavior. The high spectral resolution of the RGS, the broad energy range and tremendous collecting power of EPIC, and simultaneous optical monitoring with the OM are particularly well-suited to these studies. The second of two objects was observed on September of 2002. Data analysis for both observation has been completed: an investigation of the physical conditions of the emitting gas using emission and recombination line diagnostics to determine temperatures, densities, elemental abundances, and ionization structure. A study of behavior of the emission features as a function of binary orbit shows modulated behavior in one of the systems. A paper on "High-resolution observations of low-mass X-ray binaries" is near completion. The paper includes observations with the Chandra HETG that are not yet completed.

  8. Interpreting the radio/X-ray correlation of black hole X-ray binaries based on the accretion-jet model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Fu-Guo; Yuan, Feng

    2016-03-01

    Two types of correlations between the radio and X-ray luminosities (LR and LX) have been found in black hole X-ray binaries. For some sources, they follow the `original' type of correlation which is described by a single power law. Later it was found that some other sources follow a different correlation consisting of three power-law branches, with each branch having different power-law indexes. In this work, we explain these two types of correlation under the coupled accretion-jet model. We attribute the difference between these two types of sources to the different value of viscosity parameter α. One possible reason for different α is the different configuration of magnetic field in the accretion material coming from the companion stars. For the `single power-law' sources, their α is high; so their accretion is always in the mode of advection-dominated accretion flow (ADAF) for the whole range of X-ray luminosity. For those `hybrid power-law' sources, the value of α is small so their accretion mode changes from an ADAF to a luminous hot accretion flow, and eventually to two-phase accretion as the accretion rate increases. Because the dependence of radiative efficiency on the mass accretion rate is different for these three accretion modes, different power-law indexes in the LR-LX correlation are expected. Constraints on the ratio of the mass-loss rate into the jet and the mass accretion rate in the accretion flow are obtained, which can be tested in future by radiative magnetohydrodynamic numerical simulations of jet formation.

  9. Discovery of a cyclotron absorption line in the spectrum of the binary X-ray pulsar 4U 1538 - 52 observed by Ginga

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clark, George W.; Woo, Jonathan W.; Nagase, Fumiaki; Makishima, Kazuo; Sakao, Taro

    1990-01-01

    A cyclotron absorption line near 20 keV has been found in the spectrum of the massive eclipsing binary X-ray pulsar 4U 1538 - 52 in observations with the Ginga observatory. The line is detected throughout the 529 s pulse cycle with a variable equivalent width that has its maximum value during the smaller peak of the two-peak pulse profile. It is found that the profile of the pulse and the phase-dependence of the cyclotron line can be explained qualitatively by a pulsar model based on recent theoretical results on the properties of pencil beams emitted by accretion-heated slabs of magnetized plasma at the magnetic poles of a neutron star. The indicated field at the surface of the neutron star is 1.7 (1 + z) x 10 to the 12th G, where z is the gravitational redshift.

  10. Population synthesis of accreting white dwarfs - II. X-ray and UV emission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Hai-Liang; Woods, T. E.; Yungelson, L. R.; Gilfanov, M.; Han, Zhanwen

    2015-11-01

    Accreting white dwarfs (WDs) with non-degenerate companions are expected to emit in soft X-rays and the UV, if accreted H-rich material burns stably. They are an important component of the unresolved emission of elliptical galaxies, and their combined ionizing luminosity may significantly influence the optical line emission from warm interstellar medium (ISM). In an earlier paper, we modelled populations of accreting WDs, first generating WD with main-sequence, Hertzsprung gap and red giant companions with the population synthesis code BSE, and then following their evolution with a grid of evolutionary tracks computed with MESA. Now we use these results to estimate the soft X-ray (0.3-0.7 keV), H- and He II-ionizing luminosities of nuclear burning WDs and the number of supersoft X-ray sources for galaxies with different star formation histories. For the starburst case, these quantities peak at ˜1 Gyr and decline by ˜1-3 orders of magnitude by the age of 10 Gyr. For stellar ages of ˜10 Gyr, predictions of our model are consistent with soft X-ray luminosities observed by Chandra in nearby elliptical galaxies and He II 4686 Å/H β line ratio measured in stacked Sloan Digital Sky Survey spectra of retired galaxies, the latter characterizing the strength and hardness of the UV radiation field. However, the soft X-ray luminosity and He II 4686 Å/H β ratio are significantly overpredicted for stellar ages of ≲4-8 Gyr. We discuss various possibilities to resolve this discrepancy and tentatively conclude that it may be resolved by a modification of the typically used criteria of dynamically unstable mass-loss for giant stars.

  11. Anisotropy of X-Ray Bursts from Neutron Stars with Concave Accretion Disks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, C.-C.; Keek, L.

    2016-03-01

    Emission from neutron stars and accretion disks in low-mass X-ray binaries is anisotropic. The non-spherical shape of the disk as well as blocking of the neutron star by the disk make the observed flux dependent on the inclination angle of the disk with respect to the line of sight. This is of importance for the interpretation of thermonuclear X-ray bursts from neutron stars. Because part of the X-ray burst is reflected off the disk, the observed burst flux depends on the anisotropies for both direct emission from the neutron star and reflection off the disk. This influences measurements of source distance, mass accretion rate, and constraints on the neutron star’s equation of state. Previous predictions of the anisotropy factors assumed a geometrically flat disk. Detailed observations of two so-called superbursts allowed for the direct and the reflected burst fluxes to each be measured separately. The reflection fraction was much higher than what the anisotropies of a flat disk can account for. We create numerical models to calculate the anisotropy factors for different disk shapes, including concave disks. We present the anisotropy factors of the direct and reflected burst fluxes separately, as well as the anisotropy of the persistent flux. Reflection fractions substantially larger than unity are produced in the case where the inner accretion disk increases steeply in height, such that part of the star is blocked from view. Such a geometry could possibly be induced by the X-ray burst if X-ray heating causes the inner disk to puff up.

  12. X-Ray Reflected Spectra from Accretion Disk Models. II. Diagnostic Tools for X-Ray Observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Garcia, J.; Kallman, T. R.; Mushotzky, R. F.

    2011-01-01

    We present a comprehensive study of the emission spectra from accreting sources. We use our new reflection code to compute the reflected spectra from an accretion disk illuminated by X-rays. This set of models covers different values of ionization parameter, solar iron abundance and photon index for the illuminating spectrum. These models also include the most complete and recent atomic data for the inner-shell of the iron and oxygen isonuclear sequences. We concentrate our analysis to the 2 - 10 keV energy region, and in particular to the iron K-shell emission lines. We show the dependency of the equivalent width (EW) of the Fe Ka with the ionization parameter. The maximum value of the EW is approx. 800 eV for models with log Epsilon approx. 1.5, and decreases monotonically as Epsilon increases. For lower values of Epsilon the Fe K(alpha) EW decreases to a minimum near log Epsilon approx. 0.8. We produce simulated CCD observations based on our reflection models. For low ionized, reflection dominated cases, the 2 -10 keV energy region shows a very broad, curving continuum that cannot be represented by a simple power-law. We show that in addition to the Fe K-shell emission, there are other prominent features such as the Si and S L(alpha) lines, a blend of Ar VIII-XI lines, and the Ca x K(alpha) line. In some cases the S xv blends with the He-like Si RRC producing a broad feature that cannot be reproduced by a simple Gaussian profile. This could be used as a signature of reflection.

  13. EXTENDED HARD X-RAY EMISSION FROM THE VELA PULSAR WIND NEBULA

    SciTech Connect

    Mattana, F.; Terrier, R.; Zurita Heras, J. A.; Goetz, D.; Caballero, I.; Soldi, S.; Schanne, S.; Ponti, G.; Falanga, M.; Renaud, M.

    2011-12-10

    The nebula powered by the Vela pulsar is one of the best examples of an evolved pulsar wind nebula, allowing access to the particle injection history and the interaction with the supernova ejecta. We report on the INTEGRAL discovery of extended emission above 18 keV from the Vela nebula. The northern side has no known counterparts and it appears larger and more significant than the southern one, which is in turn partially coincident with the cocoon, the soft X-ray, and TeV filament toward the center of the remnant. We also present the spectrum of the Vela nebula in the 18-400 keV energy range as measured by IBIS/ISGRI and SPI on board the INTEGRAL satellite. The apparent discrepancy between IBIS/ISGRI, SPI, and previous measurements is understood in terms of the point-spread function, supporting the hypothesis of a nebula more diffuse than previously thought. A break at {approx}25 keV is found in the spectrum within 6' from the pulsar after including the Suzaku XIS data. Interpreted as a cooling break, this points out that the inner nebula is composed of electrons injected in the last {approx}2000 years. Broadband modeling also implies a magnetic field higher than 10 {mu}G in this region. Finally, we discuss the nature of the northern emission, which might be due to fresh particles injected after the passage of the reverse shock.

  14. X-RAY REFLECTED SPECTRA FROM ACCRETION DISK MODELS. I. CONSTANT DENSITY ATMOSPHERES

    SciTech Connect

    Garcia, J.; Kallman, T. R. E-mail: timothy.r.kallman@nasa.go

    2010-08-01

    We present new models for illuminated accretion disks, their structure, and reprocessed emission. We consider the effects of incident X-rays on the surface of an accretion disk by simultaneously solving the equations of radiative transfer, energy balance, and ionization equilibrium over a large range of column densities. We assume plane-parallel geometry and azimuthal symmetry, such that each calculation corresponds to a ring at a given distance from the central object. Our models include recent and complete atomic data for K-shell processes of the iron and oxygen isonuclear sequences. We examine the effect on the spectrum of fluorescent K{alpha} line emission and absorption in the emitted spectrum. We also explore the dependence of the spectrum on the strength of the incident X-rays and other input parameters, and discuss the importance of Comptonization on the emitted spectrum.

  15. X-ray Reflected Spectra from Accretion Disk Models. I. Constant Density Atmospheres

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Garcia, Javier; Kallman, Timothy R.

    2009-01-01

    We present new models for illuminated accretion disks, their structure and reprocessed emission. We consider the effects of incident X-rays on the surface of an accretion disk by solving simultaneously the equations of radiative transfer, energy balance and ionization equilibrium over a large range of column densities. We assume plane-parallel geometry and azimuthal symmetry, such that each calculation corresponds to a ring at a given distance from the central object. Our models include recent and complete atomic data for K-shell of the iron and oxygen isonuclear sequences. We examine the effect on the spectrum of fluorescent Ka line emission and absorption in the emitted spectrum. We also explore the dependence of the spectrum on the strength of the incident X-rays and other input parameters, and discuss the importance of Comptonization on the emitted spectrum.

  16. Information about accretion flows from X-ray timing of pulsating sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lamb, F. K.; Pines, D.; Shaham, J.

    1976-01-01

    The response was studied of a rotating neutron star to fluctuating torques and it was found that the observed variations in the pulsation periods of the compact X-ray sources Cen X-3 and Her X-1 could be caused by short time scale fluctuations in the accretion torques acting on the neutron stars. The sizes and rates of the required fluctuations are consistent with current accretion models. Such fluctuations can cause period variations either (a) directly, by causing a random walk of the star's angular velocity or (b) indirectly, by exciting a long-period mode of the neutron star, such as the Tkachenko mode of the rotating neutron superfluid. Phenomena in compact X-ray sources and cataclysmic variables which may be caused by fluctuating mass flow rates are also discussed.

  17. Accretion disk winds in active galactic nuclei: X-ray observations, models, and feedback

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tombesi, F.

    2016-05-01

    Powerful winds driven by active galactic nuclei (AGN) are often invoked to play a fundamental role in the evolution of both supermassive black holes (SMBHs) and their host galaxies, quenching star formation and explaining the tight SMBH-galaxy relations. A strong support of this ``quasar mode'' feedback came from the recent X-ray observation of a mildly relativistic accretion disk wind in a ultraluminous infrared galaxy (ULIRG) and its connection with a large-scale molecular outflow, providing a direct link between the SMBH and the gas out of which stars form. Spectroscopic observations, especially in the X-ray band, show that such accretion disk winds may be common in local AGN and quasars. However, their origin and characteristics are still not fully understood. Detailed theoretical models and simulations focused on radiation, magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) or a combination of these two processes to investigate the possible acceleration mechanisms and the dynamics of these winds. Some of these models have been directly compared to X-ray spectra, providing important insights into the wind physics. However, fundamental improvements on these studies will come only from the unprecedented energy resolution and sensitivity of the upcoming X-ray observatories, namely ASTRO-H (launch date early 2016) and Athena (2028).

  18. X-Ray Observations of Parsec-scale Tails behind Two Middle-Aged Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kargaltsev, O.; Misanovic, Z.; Pavlov, G. G.; Wong, J. A.; Garmire, G. P.

    2008-09-01

    Chandra and XMM-Newton resolved extremely long tails behind two middle-aged pulsars, J1509-5850 and J1740+1000. The tail of PSR J1509-5850 is discernible up to 5.6' from the pulsar, which corresponds to the projected length l⊥ = 6.5d4 pc, where d = 4d4 kpc is the distance to the pulsar. The observed tail flux is 2 × 10-13 ergs s-1 cm-2 in the 0.5-8 keV band. The tail spectrum fits an absorbed power law (PL) with the photon index Γ = 2.3 +/- 0.2 and 0.5-8 keV luminosity of 1 × 1033d42 ergs s-1, for nH = 2.1 × 1022 cm-2. The tail of PSR J1740+1000 is firmly detected up to 5' (l⊥ ~ 2d1.4 pc), with a flux of 6 × 10-14 ergs cm-2 s-1 in the 0.4-10 keV band. The PL fit yields Γ = 1.4-1.5, nH ≈ 1 × 1021 cm-2, and an 0.4-10 keV luminosity of ~2 × 1031d1.42 ergs s-1. The large extent of the tails suggests that the bulk flow in the tails starts as mildly relativistic downstream of the termination shock and then gradually decelerates. Within the observed extent of the J1509-5850 tail, the average flow speed exceeds 5000 km s-1, and the equipartition magnetic field is a few × 10-5 G. For the J1740+1000 tail, the equipartition field is a factor of a few lower. For the high-latitude PSR J1740+1000, the orientation of the tail suggests that the pulsar was born from a halo-star progenitor. The X-ray efficiencies of the ram pressure-confined pulsar wind nebulae (PWNe) correlate poorly with the pulsar spin-down luminosities or ages. The efficiencies are systematically higher than those of PWNe around slowly moving pulsars with similar spin-down parameters.

  19. Accretion by rotating magnetic neutron stars. III - Accretion torques and period changes in pulsating X-ray sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ghosh, P.; Lamb, F. K.

    1979-01-01

    The solutions of the two-dimensional hydromagnetic equations are used to calculate the torque on a magnetic neutron star accreting from a Keplerian disk. It is found that the magnetic coupling between the star and the plasma in the outer transition zone is appreciable; that as a result, the spin-up torque on fast rotators is substantially less than that on slow rotators, and that for sufficiently high stellar angular velocities or sufficiently low mass accretion rates, the rotation of the star can be braked while accretion continues. These results are applied to pulsating X-ray sources, revealing that at high luminosities a star of given spin period rotating in the same direction as the disk can experience either spin-up or spin-down, depending on its luminosity. Also considered are the general problem of interpreting period changes in pulsating X-ray sources, and the dipole magnetic moments of nine pulsating X-ray sources are estimated by fitting the theoretical spin-up equation to estimates of the average luminosity and spin-up rate of each source.

  20. Variable X-Ray and UV emission from AGB stars: Accretion activity associated with binarity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sahai, Raghvendra; Sanz-Forcada, Jorge; Sánchez Contreras, Carmen

    2016-07-01

    Almost all of our current understanding of the late evolutionary stages of (1 — 8) Mʘ stars is based on single-star models. However, binarity can drastically affect late stellar evolution, producing dramatic changes in the history and geometry of mass loss that occurs in stars as they evolve off the AGB to become planetary nebulae (PNe). A variety of binary models have been proposed, which can lead to the generation of accretion disks and magnetic fields, which in turn produce the highly collimated jets that have been proposed as the primary agents for the formation of bipolar and multipolar PNe. However, observational evidence of binarity in AGB stars is sorely lacking simply these stars are very luminous and variable, invalidating standard techniques for binary detection. Using an innovative technique of searching for UV emission from AGB stars with GALEX, we have identified a class of AGB stars with far- ultraviolet excesses (fuvAGB stars), that are likely candidates for active accretion associated with a binary companion. We have carried out a pilot survey for X-ray emission from fuvAGB stars. The X-ray fluxes are found to vary in a stochastic or quasi-periodic manner on roughly hour-long times-scales, and simultaneous UV observations show similar variations in the UV fluxes. We discuss several models for the X-ray emission and its variability and find that the most likely scenario for the origin of the X-ray (and FUV) emission involves accretion activity around a main-sequence companion star, with confinement by strong magnetic fields associated with the companion and/or an accretion disk around it.

  1. Inner Accretion Disk Regions of Black Hole X-ray Binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salvesen, Greg

    2015-01-01

    The innermost regions of accretion disks in black hole X-ray binaries dominate the observed X-ray emission, which is the main diagnostic that one uses to gain insights into the physics of black holes and accretion. The standard spectrum predicted from a geometrically thin, optically thick disk experiences non-trivial modification due to conspiring physical effects operating within the vertical disk structure such as Comptonization, free-free emission/absorption, bound-free opacities, and energy dissipation by magnetic processes. The complicated interplay of these effects cause the seed accretion disk spectrum to become hardened and it is this hardened emergent spectrum that we observe. To zeroth order, this hardening can be described by a phenomenological parameter called the spectral hardening factor.In practice, the adopted degree of spectral hardening is confined to lie within a rather restrictive range. I will discuss the following consequences of relaxing this criterion, while still requiring the spectral hardening factor to take on physically plausible values. Examining multiple state transitions of the black hole X-ray binary GX 339-4 with archival data from the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer, I will show that appealing to a spectral hardening factor that varies during state transitions provides a viable alternative to a truncated disk model for the evolution of the inner accretion disk. Having demonstrated that moderate degrees of accretion disk spectral hardening cannot be ruled out by observations, I will explore this possibility from a theoretical standpoint. Extending previous work on radiative transfer modeling coupled to the vertical disk structure, I present the impacts on the emergent accretion disk spectrum caused by disk inclination and by allowing accretion power to be dissipated in the corona. Using magnetohydrodynamic simulations of a localized patch of the accretion disk (i.e., shearing box) performed with the Athena code, I will present the

  2. CONTINUED NEUTRON STAR CRUST COOLING OF THE 11 Hz X-RAY PULSAR IN TERZAN 5: A CHALLENGE TO HEATING AND COOLING MODELS?

    SciTech Connect

    Degenaar, N.; Miller, J. M.; Wijnands, R.; Altamirano, D.; Fridriksson, J.; Brown, E. F.; Cackett, E. M.; Homan, J.; Heinke, C. O.; Sivakoff, G. R.; Pooley, D.

    2013-09-20

    The transient neutron star low-mass X-ray binary and 11 Hz X-ray pulsar IGR J17480-2446 in the globular cluster Terzan 5 exhibited an 11 week accretion outburst in 2010. Chandra observations performed within five months after the end of the outburst revealed evidence that the crust of the neutron star became substantially heated during the accretion episode and was subsequently cooling in quiescence. This provides the rare opportunity to probe the structure and composition of the crust. Here, we report on new Chandra observations of Terzan 5 that extend the monitoring to ≅2.2 yr into quiescence. We find that the thermal flux and neutron star temperature have continued to decrease, but remain significantly above the values that were measured before the 2010 accretion phase. This suggests that the crust has not thermally relaxed yet, and may continue to cool. Such behavior is difficult to explain within our current understanding of heating and cooling of transiently accreting neutron stars. Alternatively, the quiescent emission may have settled at a higher observed equilibrium level (for the same interior temperature), in which case the neutron star crust may have fully cooled.

  3. An unexpected drop in the magnetic field of the X-ray pulsar V0332+53 after the bright outburst occurred in 2015

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cusumano, G.; La Parola, V.; D'Aì, A.; Segreto, A.; Tagliaferri, G.; Barthelmy, S. D.; Gehrels, N.

    2016-07-01

    How the accreted mass settling on the surface of a neutron star affects the topology of the magnetic field and how the secular evolution of the binary system depends on the magnetic field change is still an open issue. We report evidence for a clear drop in the observed magnetic field in the accreting pulsar V0332+53 after undergoing a bright 3-month long X-ray outburst. We determine the field from the position of the fundamental cyclotron line in its X-ray spectrum and relate it to the luminosity. For equal levels of luminosity, in the declining phase we measure a systematically lower value of the cyclotron line energy with respect to the rising phase. This results in a drop of ˜1.7 × 1011 G of the observed field between the onset and the end of the outburst. The settling of the accreted plasma on to the polar cap seems to induce a distortion of the magnetic field lines weakening their intensity along the accretion columns. Therefore, the dissipation rate of the magnetic field could be much faster than previously estimated, unless the field is able to restore its original configuration on a time-scale comparable with the outbursts recurrence time.

  4. PSR J0357+3205: A FAST-MOVING PULSAR WITH A VERY UNUSUAL X-RAY TRAIL

    SciTech Connect

    De Luca, A.; Mignani, R. P.; Marelli, M.; Salvetti, D.; Sartore, N.; Caraveo, P. A.; Bignami, G. F.; Belfiore, A.; Saz Parkinson, P.

    2013-03-01

    The middle-aged PSR J0357+3205 is a nearby, radio-quiet, bright {gamma}-ray pulsar discovered by the Fermi mission. Our previous Chandra observation revealed a huge, very peculiar structure of diffuse X-ray emission originating at the pulsar position and extending for >9' on the plane of the sky. To better understand the nature of such a nebula, we have studied the proper motion of the parent pulsar. We performed relative astrometry on Chandra images of the field spanning a time baseline of 2.2 yr, unveiling a significant angular displacement of the pulsar counterpart, corresponding to a proper motion of 0.''165 {+-} 0.''030 yr{sup -1} at a position angle (P.A.) of 314 Degree-Sign {+-} 8 Degree-Sign . At a distance of {approx}500 pc, the space velocity of the pulsar would be of {approx}390 km s{sup -1} assuming no inclination with respect to the plane of the sky. The direction of the pulsar proper motion is aligned very well with the main axis of the X-ray nebula (P.A. = 315. Degree-Sign 5 {+-} 1. Degree-Sign 5), pointing to a physical, yet elusive, link between the nebula and the pulsar space velocity. No optical emission in the H{alpha} line is seen in a deep image collected at the Gemini telescope, which implies that the interstellar medium into which the pulsar is moving is fully ionized.

  5. An X-ray outburst from the rapidly accreting young star that illuminates McNeil's nebula.

    PubMed

    Kastner, J H; Richmond, M; Grosso, N; Weintraub, D A; Simon, T; Frank, A; Hamaguchi, K; Ozawa, H; Henden, A

    2004-07-22

    Young, low-mass stars are luminous X-ray sources whose powerful X-ray flares may exert a profound influence over the process of planet formation. The origin of the X-ray emission is uncertain. Although many (or perhaps most) recently formed, low-mass stars emit X-rays as a consequence of solar-like coronal activity, it has also been suggested that X-ray emission may be a direct result of mass accretion onto the forming star. Here we report X-ray imaging spectroscopy observations which reveal a factor approximately 50 increase in the X-ray flux from a young star that is at present undergoing a spectacular optical/infrared outburst (this star illuminates McNeil's nebula). The outburst seems to be due to the sudden onset of a phase of rapid accretion. The coincidence of a surge in X-ray brightness with the optical/infrared eruption demonstrates that strongly enhanced high-energy emission from young stars can occur as a consequence of high accretion rates. We suggest that such accretion-enhanced X-ray emission from erupting young stars may be short-lived, because intense star-disk magnetospheric interactions are quenched rapidly by the subsequent flood of new material onto the star. PMID:15269761

  6. STOCHASTIC ACCRETION AND THE VARIABILITY OF SUPERGIANT FAST X-RAY TRANSIENTS

    SciTech Connect

    Pizzolato, Fabio; Sidoli, Lara E-mail: sidoli@iasf-milano.inaf.it

    2013-01-10

    In this paper, we consider the variability of the luminosity of a compact object (CO) powered by the accretion of an extremely inhomogeneous (clumpy) stream of matter. The accretion of a single clump results in an X-ray flare; we adopt a simple model for the response of the CO to its arrival, and derive a stochastic differential equation (SDE) for the accretion-powered luminosity L(t). We set the SDE in the equivalent form of an equation for the flare luminosity distribution (FLD) and discuss its solution in the stationary case. We apply our formalism to the analysis of the FLDs of supergiant fast X-ray transients (SFXTs), a peculiar sub-class of high-mass X-ray binary (HMXB) systems. We compare our theoretical FLDs to the distributions observed in the SFXTs IGR J16479-4514, IGR J17544-2619, and XTE J1739-302. Despite its simplicity, our model agrees well with the observed distributions and allows us to predict some properties of the stellar wind. Finally, we discuss how our model may explain the difference between the broad FLDs of SFXTs and the much narrower FLDs of persistent HMXBs.

  7. Geometry of X-ray sources in accreting black-hole binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zdziarski, Andrzej

    2016-07-01

    The structure of the X-ray sources in the hard spectral state of accreting black-hole binaries has been a subject of intense debate. The paradigm dominant for many years postulated that the accretion disc in the hard state is truncated at some radius >> the innermost stable orbit (ISCO) whereas the disc reaches the ISCO in the soft state. This paradigm explains a large body of observed phenomena, including the spectral and variability differences between the states and outbursts of transient sources, proceeding from quiescence (where no disc is present) through the hard state to the peak flux in the soft state. On the other hand, there have been numerous claims in recent years that the disc extends to the ISCO in the hard state. Also, the primary X-ray source has been postulated to consist of a compact source on-axis of the rotating black hole (a lamppost). Those claims are based on observations of broad Fe K lines and of soft X-ray components interpreted as blackbody-emitting accretion discs. I will discuss arguments for and against the disc truncation and the lamppost geometry based on current spectral and timing results.

  8. Supercritical accretion disks in ultraluminous X-ray sources and SS 433

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fabrika, Sergei; Ueda, Yoshihiro; Vinokurov, Alexander; Sholukhova, Olga; Shidatsu, Megumi

    2015-07-01

    The black hole mass and accretion rate in ultraluminous X-ray sources (ULXs) in external galaxies, whose X-ray luminosities exceed those of the brightest black holes in our Galaxy by hundreds and thousands of times, is an unsolved problem. Here we report that all ULXs ever spectroscopically observed have almost the same optical spectra, apparently of WNL type (late nitrogen Wolf-Rayet stars) or LBV (luminous blue variables) in their hot state, which are very scarce stellar objects. We show that the spectra do not originate from WNL/LBV-type donors but from very hot winds from the accretion disks with nearly normal hydrogen content, which have similar physical conditions to the stellar winds from these stars. The optical spectra are similar to that of SS 433, the only known supercritical accretor in our Galaxy, although the ULX spectra indicate a higher wind temperature. Our results suggest that ULXs with X-ray luminosities of ~1040 erg s-1 must constitute a homogeneous class of objects, which most likely have supercritical accretion disks.

  9. Discovery of a Second Millesecond Accreting Pulsar: XTE J1751-305

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Markwardt, C. B.; Swank, J. H.; Strohmayer, T. E.; intZand, J. J. M.; Marshall, F. E.; White, Nicholas E. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    We report the discovery by the RXTE PCA of a second transient accreting millisecond pulsar, XTE J1751-305, during regular monitoring observations of the galactic bulge region. The pulsar has a spin frequency of 435 Hz, making it one of the fastest pulsars. The pulsations contain the signature of orbital Doppler modulation, which implies an orbital period of 42 minutes, the shortest orbital period of any known radio or X-ray millisecond pulsar. The mass function, f(sub x) = (1.278 +/- 0.003) x 10 (exp -6) solar mass, yields a minimum mass for the companion of between 0.013 and 0.0017 solar mass depending on the mass of the neutron star. No eclipses were detected. A previous X-ray outburst in June, 1998, was discovered in archival All-Sky Monitor data. Assuming mass transfer in this binary system is driven by gravitational radiation, we constrain the orbital inclination to be in the range 30 deg-85 deg and the companion mass to be 0.013-0.035 solar mass. The companion is most likely a heated helium dwarf. We also present results from the Chandra HRC-S observations which provide the best known position of XTE J1751-305.

  10. Suzaku view of the Be/X-ray binary pulsar GX 304-1 during Type I X-ray outbursts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jaisawal, Gaurava K.; Naik, Sachindra; Epili, Prahlad

    2016-04-01

    We report the timing and spectral properties of the Be/X-ray binary pulsar GX 304-1 using two Suzaku observations during its 2010 August and 2012 January X-ray outbursts. Pulsations at ˜275 s were clearly detected in the light curves from both observations. Pulse profiles were found to be strongly energy-dependent. During the 2010 observation, the prominent dips seen in soft X-ray (≤10 keV) pulse profiles were found to be absent at higher energies. However, during the 2012 observation, the pulse profiles were complex as a result of the presence of several dips. Significant changes in the shape of the pulse profiles were detected at high energies (>35 keV). A phase shift of ˜0.3 was detected while comparing the phase of the main dip in the pulse profiles below and above ˜35 keV. The broad-band energy spectrum of the pulsar was well described by a partially absorbed negative and positive power law with exponential cut-off (NPEX) model with 6.4-keV iron line and a cyclotron absorption feature. The energy of the cyclotron absorption line was found to be ˜53 and 50 keV for the 2010 and 2012 observations, respectively, indicating a marginal positive dependence on source luminosity. Based on the results obtained from phase-resolved spectroscopy, the absorption dips in the pulse profiles can be interpreted as due to the presence of additional matter at same phases. Observed positive correlation between the cyclotron line energy and luminosity, and the significant pulse-phase variation of cyclotron parameters are discussed from the perspective of theoretical models on the cyclotron absorption line in X-ray pulsars.

  11. Soft X-Ray Excess from Shocked Accreting Plasma in Active Galactic Nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fukumura, Keigo; Hendry, Douglas; Clark, Peter; Tombesi, Francesco; Takahashi, Masaaki

    2016-08-01

    We propose a novel theoretical model to describe the physical identity of the soft X-ray excess that is ubiquitously detected in many Seyfert galaxies, by considering a steady-state, axisymmetric plasma accretion within the innermost stable circular orbit around a black hole (BH) accretion disk. We extend our earlier theoretical investigations on general relativistic magnetohydrodynamic accretion, which implied that the accreting plasma can develop into a standing shock under suitable physical conditions, causing the downstream flow to be sufficiently hot due to shock compression. We perform numerical calculations to examine, for sets of fiducial plasma parameters, the physical nature of fast magnetohydrodynamic shocks under strong gravity for different BH spins. We show that thermal seed photons from the standard accretion disk can be effectively Compton up-scattered by the energized sub-relativistic electrons in the hot downstream plasma to produce the soft excess feature in X-rays. As a case study, we construct a three-parameter Comptonization model of inclination angle θ obs, disk photon temperature kT in, and downstream electron energy kT e to calculate the predicted spectra in comparison with a 60 ks XMM-Newton/EPIC-pn spectrum of a typical radio-quiet Seyfert 1 active galactic nucleus, Ark 120. Our χ 2-analyses demonstrate that the model is plausible for successfully describing data for both non-spinning and spinning BHs with derived ranges of 61.3 keV ≲ kT e ≲ 144.3 keV, 21.6 eV ≲ kT in ≲ 34.0 eV, and 17.°5 ≲ θ obs ≲ 42.°6, indicating a compact Comptonizing region of three to four gravitational radii that resembles the putative X-ray coronae.

  12. Pulsar Polar Cap Heating and Surface Thermal X-ray Emission. 2; Inverse Compton Radiation Pair Fronts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.; Muslimov, Alexander G.; White, Nicholas E. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    We investigate the production of electron-positron pairs by inverse Compton scattered (ICS) photons above a pulsar polar cap (PC) and calculate surface heating by returning positrons. This paper is a continuation of our self-consistent treatment of acceleration, pair dynamics, and electric field screening above pulsar PCs. We calculate the altitude of the inverse Compton pair-formation fronts, the flux of returning positrons, and present the heating efficiencies and X-ray luminosities. We revise pulsar death lines implying cessation of pair formation, and present them in surface magnetic field-period space. We find that virtually all known radio pulsars are capable of producing pairs by resonant and nonresonant ICS photons radiated by particles accelerated above the PC in a pure star-centered dipole field, so that our ICS pair death line coincides with empirical radio pulsar death. Our calculations show that ICS pairs are able to screen the accelerating electric field only for high PC surface temperatures and magnetic fields. We argue that such screening at ICS pair fronts occurs locally, slowing but not turning off acceleration of particles until screening can occur at a curvature radiation (CR) pair front at higher altitude. In the case where no screening occurs above the PC surface, we anticipate that the pulsar gamma-ray luminosity will be a substantial fraction of its spin-down luminosity. The X-ray luminosity resulting from PC heating by ICS pair fronts is significantly lower than the PC heating luminosity from CR pair fronts, which dominates for most pulsars. PC heating from ICS pair fronts is highest in millisecond pulsars, which cannot produce CR pairs, and may account for observed thermal X-ray components in the spectra of these old pulsars.

  13. Soft x-ray properties of the binary millisecond pulsar J0437-4715

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, Jules P.; Martin, Christopher; Marshall, Herman L.

    1995-01-01

    We obtained a light curve for the 5.75 ms pulsar J0437-4715 in the 65-120 A range with 0.5 ms time resolution using the Deep Survey instrument on the EUVE satellite. The single-peaked profile has a pulsed fraction of 0. 27 +/- 0.05, similar to the ROSAT data in the overlapping energy band. A combined analysis of the EUVE and ROSAT data is consistent with a power-law spectrum of energy index alpha = 1.2-1.5, intervening column density NH = (5-8) x 10(exp 19)/sq cm, and luminosity 5.0 x 10(exp 30) ergs/s in the 0.1-2. 4 keV band. We also use a bright EUVE/ROSAT source only 4.3 deg from the pulsar, the Seyfert galaxy RX J0437.4-4711 (= EUVE J0437-471 = lES 0435-472), to obtain an independent upper limit on the intervening absorption to the pulsar, NH less than 1.2 x 10(exp 20)/sq cm. Although a blackbody spectrum fails to fit the ROSAT data, two-component spectral fits to the combined EUVE/ROSAT data are used to limit the temperatures and surface areas of thermal emission that might make partial contributions to the flux. A hot polar cap of radius 50-600 m and temperature (1.0-3.3) x 10(exp 6) K could be present. Alternatively, a larger region with T = (4-12) x 10(exp 5) K and area less than 200 sq km, might contribute most of the EUVE and soft X-ray flux, but only if a hotter component were present as well. Any of these temperatures would require some mechanism(s) of surface reheating to be operating in this old pulsar, the most plausible being the impact of accelerated electrons and positrons onto the polar caps. The kinematically corrected spin-down power of PSR J0437-4715 is only 4 x 10(exp 33) ergs/s, which is an order of magnitude less than that of the lowest-luminosity gamma-ray pulsars Geminga and PSR B1055-52. The absence of high-energy gamma-rays from PSR J0437-4715 might signify an inefficient or dead outer gap accelerator, which in turn accounts for the lack of a more luminous reheated surface such as those intermediate-age gamma-ray pulsars may have.

  14. Soft X-Ray Properties of the Binary Millisecond Pulsar J0437-4715

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, Jules P.; Martin, Christopher; Marshall, Herman, L.; Oliversen, Ronald (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    We obtained a light curve for the 5.75 ms pulsar J0437-4715 in the 65-120 A range with 0.5 ms time resolution using the Deep Survey instrument on the EUVE satellite. The single-peaked profile has a pulsed fraction of 0.27 +/- 0.05, similar to the ROSAT data in the overlapping energy band. A combined analysis of the EUVE and ROSAT data is consistent with a power-law spectrum of energy index alpha = 1.2 - 1.5, intervening column density N(sub H) = (5 - 8) x 10(exp 19)/sq cm, and luminosity 5.0 x 10(exp 30) ergs/s in the 0.1 - 2.4 keV band. We also use a bright EUVE/ROSAT source only 4.2 min. from the pulsar, the Seyfert galaxy RX J0437.4-4711 (= EUVE J0437-471 = IES 0435-472), to obtain an independent upper limit on the intervening absorption to the pulsar, N(sub H) less than 1.2 x 10(exp 20)/sq cm. Although a blackbody spectrum fails to fit the ROSAT data, two-component spectral fits to the combined EUVE/ROSAT data are used to limit the temperatures and surface areas of thermal emission that might make partial contributions to the flux. A hot polar cap of radius 50 - 600 m and temperature (1.0 - 3.3) x 10(exp 6) K could be present. Alternatively, a larger region with T = (4 - 12) x 10(exp 5) K and area less than 200 sq km, might contribute most of the EUVE and soft X-ray flux, but only if a hotter component were present as well. Any of these temperatures would require some mechanism(s) of surface reheating to be operating in this old pulsar, the most plausible being the impact of accelerated electrons and positrons onto the polar caps. The kinematically corrected spin-down power of PSR J0437-4715 is only 4 x 10(exp 33) ergs/s, which is an order of magnitude less than that of the lowest-luminosity gamma-ray pulsars Geminga and PSR B1055-52. The absence of high-energy gamma-rays from PSR J0437-4715 might signify an inefficient or dead outer gap accelerator, which in turn accounts for the lack of a more luminous reheated surface such as those intermediate-age gamma

  15. X-RAY SPECTRA FROM MAGNETOHYDRODYNAMIC SIMULATIONS OF ACCRETING BLACK HOLES

    SciTech Connect

    Schnittman, Jeremy D.; Krolik, Julian H.; Noble, Scott C. E-mail: jhk@pha.jhu.edu

    2013-06-01

    We present the results of a new global radiation transport code coupled to a general relativistic magnetohydrodynamic simulation of an accreting, non-rotating black hole. For the first time, we are able to explain from first principles in a self-consistent way all the components seen in the X-ray spectra of stellar-mass black holes, including a thermal peak and all the features associated with strong hard X-ray emission: a power law extending to high energies, a Compton reflection hump, and a broad iron line. Varying only the mass accretion rate, we are able to reproduce a wide range of X-ray states seen in most galactic black hole sources. The temperature in the corona is T{sub e} {approx} 10 keV in a boundary layer near the disk and rises smoothly to T{sub e} {approx}> 100 keV in low-density regions far above the disk. Even as the disk's reflection edge varies from the horizon out to Almost-Equal-To 6M as the accretion rate decreases, we find that the shape of the Fe K{alpha} line is remarkably constant. This is because photons emitted from the plunging region are strongly beamed into the horizon and never reach the observer. We have also carried out a basic timing analysis of the spectra and find that the fractional variability increases with photon energy and viewer inclination angle, consistent with the coronal hot spot model for X-ray fluctuations.

  16. On the X-ray spectra of luminous, inhomogeneous accretion flows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merloni, A.; Malzac, J.; Fabian, A. C.; Ross, R. R.

    2006-08-01

    We discuss the expected X-ray spectral and variability properties of black hole accretion discs at high luminosity, under the hypothesis that radiation-pressure-dominated discs are subject to violent clumping instabilities and, as a result, have a highly inhomogeneous two-phase structure. After deriving the full accretion disc solutions explicitly in terms of the parameters of the model, we study their radiative properties both with a simple two-zone model, treatable analytically, and with radiative transfer simulations which account simultaneously for energy balance and Comptonization in the hot phase, together with reflection, reprocessing, ionization and thermal balance in the cold phase. We show that, if not only the density, but also the heating rate within these flows is inhomogeneous, then complex reflection-dominated spectra can be obtained for a high enough covering fraction of the cold phase. In general, large reflection components in the observed X-ray spectra should be associated with strong soft excesses, resulting from the combined emission of ionized atomic emission lines. The variability properties of such systems are such that, even when contributing to a large fraction of the hard X-ray spectrum, the reflection component is less variable than the power-law-like emission originating from the hot Comptonizing phase, in agreement with what is observed in many Narrow Line Seyfert 1 galaxies and bright Seyfert 1. Our model falls within the family of those trying to explain the complex X-ray spectra of bright AGN with ionized reflection, but presents an alternative, specific, physically motivated, geometrical set-up for the complex multiphase structure of the inner regions of near-Eddington accretion flows.

  17. Inhomogeneous accretion discs and the soft states of black hole X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dexter, Jason; Quataert, Eliot

    2012-10-01

    Observations of black hole binaries (BHBs) have established a rich phenomenology of X-ray states. The soft states range from the low variability, accretion disc dominated thermal (TD) state to the higher variability, non-thermal steep power law (SPL) state. The disc component in all states is typically modelled with standard thin disc accretion theory. However, this theory is inconsistent with optical/UV spectral, variability and gravitational microlensing observations of active galactic nuclei (AGNs), the supermassive analogues of BHBs. An inhomogeneous disc (ID) model with large (≃0.4 dex) temperature fluctuations in each radial annulus can qualitatively explain all of these AGN observations. The inhomogeneity may be a consequence of instabilities in radiation-dominated discs, and therefore may be present in BHBs as well. We show that ID models can explain many features of the TD and SPL states of BHBs. The observed relationships between spectral hardness, disc fraction and rms variability amplitude in BHBs are reproduced with temperature fluctuations similar to those inferred in AGNs, suggesting a unified picture of luminous accretion discs across orders of magnitude in black hole mass. This picture can be tested with spectral fitting of ID models, X-ray polarization observations and radiation magnetohydrodynamic simulations. If BHB accretion discs are indeed inhomogeneous, only the most disc-dominated states (disc fraction ≳0.95) can be used to robustly infer black hole spin using current continuum fitting methods.

  18. INTEGRAL detects a new outburst from the millisecond X-ray pulsar IGR J17511-3057

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bozzo, E.; Kuulkers, E.; Bazzano, A.; Beckmann, V.; Bird, T.; Bodaghee, A.; Chenevez, J.; Del Santo, M.; Domingo, A.; Jonker, P.; Kretschmar, P.; Markwardt, C.; Paizis, A.; Pottschmidt, K.; Sanchez-Fernandez, C.; Wijnands, R.; Ferrigno, C.; Tuerler, M.

    2015-03-01

    During the observations performed in the direction of the Galactic Bulge on 2015 March 23 from 02:49 to 07:26 (UTC), the instruments on-board INTEGRAL detected a new outburst from the millisecond X-ray pulsar IGR J17511-3057 (ATel #2196, #2197; Papitto et al., 2010, MNRAS, 407, 2575).

  19. The Relation Between Accretion Rate And Jet Power in X-Ray Luminous Elliptical Galaxies

    SciTech Connect

    Allen, Steven W.; Dunn, R.J.H.; Fabian, A.C.; Taylor, G.B.; Reynolds, C.S.; /Maryland U.

    2006-03-10

    Using Chandra X-ray observations of nine nearby, X-ray luminous elliptical galaxies with good optical velocity dispersion measurements, we show that a tight correlation exists between the Bondi accretion rates calculated from the observed gas temperature and density profiles and estimated black hole masses, and the power emerging from these systems in relativistic jets. The jet powers, which are inferred from the energies and timescales required to inflate cavities observed in the surrounding X-ray emitting gas, can be related to the accretion rates using a power law model of the form log (P{sub Bondi}/10{sup 43} erg s{sup -1}) = A + B log (P{sub jet}/10{sup 43} erg s{sup -1}), with A = 0.62 {+-} 0.15 and B = 0.77 {+-} 0.18. Our results show that a significant fraction of the energy associated with the rest mass of material entering the Bondi accretion radius (2.4{sub -0.7}{sup +1.0} per cent, for P{sub jet} = 10{sup 43} erg s{sup -1}) eventually emerges in the relativistic jets. Our results have significant implications for studies of accretion, jet formation and galaxy formation. The observed tight correlation suggests that the Bondi formulae provide a reasonable description of the accretion process in these systems, despite the likely presence of magnetic pressure and angular momentum in the accreting gas. The similarity of the P{sub Bondi} and P{sub jet} values argues that a significant fraction of the matter entering the accretion radius flows down to regions close to the black holes, where the jets are presumably formed. The tight correlation between P{sub Bondi} and P{sub jet} also suggests that the accretion flows are approximately stable over timescales of a few million years. Our results show that the black hole ''engines'' at the hearts of large elliptical galaxies and groups feed back sufficient energy to stem cooling and star formation, leading naturally to the observed exponential cut off at the bright end of the galaxy luminosity function.

  20. A Deep Chandra X-Ray Spectrum of the Accreting Young Star TW Hydrae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brickhouse, N. S.; Cranmer, S. R.; Dupree, A. K.; Luna, G. J. M.; Wolk, S.

    2010-02-01

    We present X-ray spectral analysis of the accreting young star TW Hydrae from a 489 ks observation using the Chandra High Energy Transmission Grating. The spectrum provides a rich set of diagnostics for electron temperature Te , electron density Ne , hydrogen column density NH , relative elemental abundances, and velocities, and reveals its source in three distinct regions of the stellar atmosphere: the stellar corona, the accretion shock, and a very large extended volume of warm postshock plasma. The presence of Mg XII, Si XIII, and Si XIV emission lines in the spectrum requires coronal structures at ~10 MK. Lower temperature lines (e.g., from O VIII, Ne IX, and Mg XI) formed at 2.5 MK appear more consistent with emission from an accretion shock. He-like Ne IX line ratio diagnostics indicate that Te = 2.50 ± 0.25 MK and Ne = 3.0 ± 0.2 × 1012 cm-3 in the shock. These values agree well with standard magnetic accretion models. However, the Chandra observations significantly diverge from current model predictions for the postshock plasma. This gas is expected to cool radiatively, producing O VII as it flows into an increasingly dense stellar atmosphere. Surprisingly, O VII indicates Ne = 5.7+4.4 -1.2 × 1011 cm-3, 5 times lower than Ne in the accretion shock itself and ~7 times lower than the model prediction. We estimate that the postshock region producing O VII has roughly 300 times larger volume and 30 times more emitting mass than the shock itself. Apparently, the shocked plasma heats the surrounding stellar atmosphere to soft X-ray emitting temperatures and supplies this material to nearby large magnetic structures—which may be closed magnetic loops or open magnetic field leading to mass outflow. Our model explains the soft X-ray excess found in many accreting systems as well as the failure to observe high Ne signatures in some stars. Such accretion-fed coronae may be ubiquitous in the atmospheres of accreting young stars.

  1. Multi-wavelength emissions from the millisecond pulsar binary PSR J1023+0038 during an accretion active state

    SciTech Connect

    Takata, J.; Leung, Gene C. K.; Wu, E. M. H.; Cheng, K. S.; Li, K. L.; Kong, A. K. H.; Tam, P. H. T.; Hui, C. Y.; Xing, Yi; Wang, Zhongxiang; Cao, Yi; Tang, Sumin E-mail: akong@phys.nthu.edu.tw

    2014-04-20

    Recent observations strongly suggest that the millisecond pulsar binary PSR J1023+0038 has developed an accretion disk since 2013 June. We present a multi-wavelength analysis of PSR J1023+0038, which reveals that (1) its gamma-rays suddenly brightened within a few days in 2013 June/July and has remained at a high gamma-ray state for several months; (2) both UV and X-ray fluxes have increased by roughly an order of magnitude; and (3) the spectral energy distribution has changed significantly after the gamma-ray sudden flux change. Time variabilities associated with UV and X-rays are on the order of 100-500 s and 50-100 s, respectively. Our model suggests that a newly formed accretion disk, due to the sudden increase of the stellar wind, could explain the changes of all these observed features. The increase of UV is emitted from the disk, and a new component in gamma-rays is produced by inverse Compton scattering between the new UV component and pulsar wind. The increase of X-rays results from the enhancement of injection pulsar wind energy into the intra-binary shock due to the increase of the stellar wind. We also predict that the radio pulses may be blocked by the evaporated winds from the disk, and the pulsar is still powered by rotation.

  2. Disentangling X-Ray Emission Processes In Vela-Like Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaensler, Bryan; Mushotzky, Richard (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    This grant is to support analysis of data from the X-ray Multi-mirror Mission (XMM). Specifically, we have been awarded time to observe two young neutron stars, B1823-13 and B1046-58, whose X-ray emission is expected to be a complicated combination of emission from an associated supernova remnant, from a wind-powered synchrotron nebula, from magnetospheric pulsations, and from the surface of the neutron star itself. It is only with XMM's unique combination of spectral, temporal and angular resolution that all these different processes can be separated and studied. Observations of B1823-13 have been conducted and analyzed. We interpret the data as follows: The unpulsed extended non-thermal nature of the central core argues that the extended source of emission corresponds to synchrotron emission from a nebula powered by the pulsar. The temperature of the diffuse component is too high to be interpreted as thermal emission; we rather argue that this extended component is non-thermal emission from a surrounding supernova remnant shell.

  3. The Geminga Pulsar: Soft X-Ray Variability and an EUVE Observation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, Jules P.; Martin, Christopher; Marshall, Herman L.; Oliversen, Ronald (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    We observed the Geminga pulsar with the EUVE satellite, detecting pulsed emission in the Deep Survey imager. Joint spectral fits of the EUVE flux with ROSAT PSPC data are consistent with thermal plus power-law models in which the thermal component makes the dominant contribution to the soft X-ray flux seen by EUVE and ROSAT. The data are consistent with blackbody emission of T = (4 - 6) x 10(exp 5) K over most of the surface of the star at the measured parallax distance of 160 pc. Although model atmospheres are more realistic, and can fit the data with effective temperatures a factor of 2 lower, current data would not discriminate between these and blackbody models. We also find evidence for variability of Geminga's soft X-ray pulse shape. Narrow dips in the light curve that were present in 1991 had largely disappeared in 1993/1994, causing the pulsed fraction to decline from 32% to 18%. If the dips are attributed to cyclotron resonance scattering by an e1 plasma on closed magnetic field lines, then the process that resupplies that plasma must be variable.

  4. The Geminga Pulsar: Soft X-Ray Variability and an EUVE Observation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, Jules P.; Martin, Christopher; Marshall, Herman L.

    1996-01-01

    We observed the Geminga pulsar with the EUVE satellite, detecting pulsed emission in the Deep Survey imager. Joint spectral fits of the EUVE flux with ROSAT PSPC data are consistent with thermal plus power-law models in which the thermal component makes the dominant contribution to the soft X-ray flux seen by EUVE and ROSAT. The data are consistent with blackbody emission of T = (4-6) x 10(exp 5) K over most of the surface of the star at the measured parallax distance of 160 pc. Although model atmospheres are more realistic, and can fit the data with effective temperatures a factor of 2 lower, current data would not discriminate between these and blackbody models. We also find evidence for variability of Geminga's soft X-ray pulse shape. Narrow dips in the light curve that were present in 1991 had largely disappeared in 1993/1994, causing the pulsed fraction to decline from 32% to 18%. If the dips are attributed to cyclotron resonance scattering by an e(+/-) plasma on closed magnetic field lines, then the process that resupplies that plasma must be variable.

  5. X-Ray Constraints on Accretion and Starburst Processes in Galactic Nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ptak, Andrew Francis

    The results of X-ray observations of a sample of nearby low-luminosity active galactic nuclei (LLAGN), low-ionization nuclear emission line regions (LINERs), and starburst galaxies are presented. In general the 0.4-10.0 keV spectra of this heterogenous sample are fit well by a two-component model consisting of an optically-thin plasma with a temperature of ~0.7 keV and a power-law model with a photon index of ~1.7. Both the hot gas component and the hard, possibly nonthermal, X-ray emission appear to be common features of galaxies showing signs of nuclear activity. The spectrum of the hard component (roughly in the 2-10 keV bandpass) is most consistent with AGN, which are postulated to be accreting supermassive blackholes. X-ray binaries that are probably accreting blackhole candidates also appear to contribute significantly to the hard, and possibly to a lesser extent, the soft X-ray emission. Very hot (T~108 K) gas in a 'superwind' may also be contributing to the hard flux in some cases, probably concentrated in the nuclear regions of the galaxies. Another possible contributor to the featureless X-ray continuum may be inverse-Compton scattering of infrared photons, but the contribution of this component is sensitive to model assumptions. The soft emission appears to be supernovae-heated interstellar medium (ISM). In some cases, the SN-heating is actually in the form of a superwind, in which case ~90% of the X-ray emitting gas is 'swept-up' ISM and the remainder is (cooling) superwind emission out in the disks of the galaxies. Very low absolutes abundances are observed, but the uncertainties are large. Relative abundances are more secure and suggest that Fe is underabundant relative to α-process elements. The low relative Fe abundance may be due to enrichment by Type-II supernovae and∨ dust depletion, but non-equilibrium ionization may also be playing a part. Future observations by X-ray telescopes with high spatial and spectral resolution and improved

  6. X-ray Spectra from GRMHD Simulations of Accreting Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schnittman, Jeremy; Noble, Scott; Krolik, Julian H.; Kinch, Brooks

    2016-04-01

    We present the results of a global radiation transport code coupled to general relativistic magnetohydrodynamic (GRMHD) simulations of accreting black holes. For the first time, we are able to explain from first principles in a self-consistent way all the components seen in the X-ray spectra of stellar-mass black holes, including a thermal peak and all the features associated with strong hard X-ray emission: a power law extending to high energies, a Compton reflection hump, and a broad iron line. Varying only the mass accretion rate, we are able to reproduce a wide range of X-ray states seen in most galactic black hole sources. The temperature in the corona is Te ~ 10 keV in a boundary layer near the disk and rises smoothly to Te >~ 100 keV in low-density regions far above the disk. We self-consistently solve for the ionization state of gas in each vertical column of the disk, in turn giving iron fluorescent emissivity profile.

  7. Accretion influences cooling of neutron star atmospheres during type-I X-ray bursts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kajava, J.; N"attil"a, J.; Latvala, O.; Pursiainen, M.; Poutanen, J.; Suleimanov, V.; Revnivtsev, M.; Kuulkers, E.; Galloway, D.

    2014-07-01

    Observations of type-I X-ray bursts provide a way of measuring neutron star (NS) masses and radii. The derived mass-radius values depend on the colour-correction factor of the NS photosphere, the photospheric chemical composition and the distance. We have studied 11 bursting low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXB) with RXTE/PCA. We find a correlation between the time evolution of the apparent NS radii during the early cooling phases of X-ray bursts and the spectral properties of the persistent emission before the bursts. NS atmosphere models predict that the colour-correction factor decreases in the early cooling phases when the emitted luminosity drops from the Eddington value. Therefore, the apparent NS radii should be variable during this phase as it depends on this factor. We find that the model predictions agree with the data only when X-ray bursts occur during the hard (island) state of LMXBs. We take this as evidence that the accretion flow - that surrounds the NS - changes the photospheric colour-correction factor during the soft (banana) states, where the atmosphere model predictions never agree with the data. This finding is important as even slight variations in the colour-correction factors cause large errors in the derived neutron star radii.

  8. Soft gamma-ray repeaters and anomalous X-ray pulsars as highly magnetized white dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mukhopadhyay, Banibrata; Rao, A. R.

    2016-05-01

    We explore the possibility that soft gamma-ray repeaters (SGRs) and anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs) are powered by highly magnetized white dwarfs (B-WDs). We take a sample of SGRs and AXPs and provide the possible parameter space in mass, radius, and surface magnetic field based on their observed properties (period and its derivative) and the assumption that these sources obey the mass-radius relation derived for the B-WDs. The radius and magnetic field of B-WDs are adequate to explain energies in SGRs/AXPs as the rotationally powered energy. In addition, B-WDs also adequately explain the perplexing radio transient GCRT J1745-3009 as a white dwarf pulsar. Note that the radius and magnetic fields of B-WDs are neither extreme (unlike of highly magnetized neutron stars) nor ordinary (unlike of magnetized white dwarfs, yet following the Chandrasekhar's mass-radius relation (C-WDs)). In order to explain SGRs/AXPs, while the highly magnetized neutron stars require an extra, observationally not well established yet, source of energy, the C-WDs predict large ultra-violet luminosity which is observationally constrained from a strict upper limit. Finally, we provide a set of basic differences between the magnetar and B-WD hypotheses for SGRs/AXPs.

  9. Probing the depths: Relativistic, hydrodynamic simulations and X-ray observations of pulsar wind nebulae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernstein, Joseph P.

    2008-06-01

    I have undertaken a joint computational and observational study of the interaction of a light, relativistic pulsar wind with a dense, ambient medium. Such a scenario has been suggested as the origin of asymmetric pulsar wind nebulae (PWNe). I present an analysis of Chandra X-ray Observatory data on the supernova remnant (SNR) MSH 11-6 2 . I show that the central region's spectrum above 2 keV is dominated by non-thermal emission consistent with that from a PWN. The spatial and spectral analyses strongly suggest that the nebula harbors a compact object with an inferred spin-down energy sufficient to rotationally power the nebula. Nebular asymmetry strongly suggests that the nebula has been crushed by the SNR reverse shock and the nebula and SNR are consistent with being in pressure equilibrium. Thus, this observation provides evidence that, in this case, the density distribution of the interstellar medium has had a dynamical effect on the morphology of the SNR/PWN system. Another scenario wherein the ambient medium influences PWNe morphology arises when the pulsar's space velocity is supersonic. In order to study such a system I have applied an existing adaptive-mesh, axisymmetric, relativistic hydrodynamic code to the simulation of the interaction of a relativistic pulsar wind with the ambient flow setup by the space motion of the pulsar. I discuss simulations showing that this interaction can give rise to asymmetry reminiscent of the Guitar nebula leading to the formation of a relativistic backflow harboring a series of internal shockwaves. The shockwaves provide thermalized energy that is available for the continued inflation of the PWN bubble. In turn, the bubble enhances the asymmetry, thereby providing positive feedback to the backflow. Further, I present the first results from an extension of the model to study the shock acceleration, and subsequent synchrotron cooling, of particles advected by the flow. The new module may be used to compute models of

  10. Variability Profiles of Millisecond X-Ray Pulsars: Results of Pseudo-Newtonian Three-dimensional Magnetohydrodynamic Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kulkarni, A. K.; Romanova, M. M.

    2005-11-01

    We model the variability profiles of millisecond-period X-ray pulsars. We performed three-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic simulations of disk accretion to millisecond-period neutron stars with a misaligned magnetic dipole moment, using the pseudo-Newtonian Paczyński-Wiita potential to model general relativistic effects. We found that the shapes of the resulting funnel streams of accreting matter and the hot spots on the surface of the star are quite similar to those for more slowly rotating stars obtained from earlier simulations using the Newtonian potential. The funnel streams and hot spots rotate approximately with the same angular velocity as the star. The spots are bow-shaped (bar-shaped) for small (large) misalignment angles. We found that the matter falling on the star has a higher Mach number when we use the Paczyński-Wiita potential than in the Newtonian case. Having obtained the surface distribution of the emitted flux, we calculated the variability curves of the star, taking into account general relativistic, Doppler, and light-travel time effects. We found that general relativistic effects decrease the pulse fraction (flatten the light curve), while Doppler and light-travel time effects increase it and distort the light curve. We also found that the light curves from our hot spots are reproduced reasonably well by spots with a Gaussian flux distribution centered at the magnetic poles. We also calculated the observed image of the star in a few cases and saw that for certain orientations, both the antipodal hot spots are simultaneously visible, as noted by earlier authors.

  11. Guitar with a bow: a jet-like X-ray-emitting feature associated a fast-moving pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Q. Daniel

    2011-09-01

    The Guitar Nebula is known to be a ram-pressure confined pulsar wind nebula associated with the very fast-moving pulsar B2224+65. Existing observations at two epochs have shown an unexpected 2 arcmin long X-ray-emitting jet-like feature emanating from the pulsar and offset from its proper motion direction by 118 degree. We propose a deep third epoch observation of this system in order to measure the X-ray spectral gradient across the feature as well as to confirm its proper motion, its morphological variation with time, and the presence of a counter jet. We will then critically test scenarios proposed to explain this system, which represents a class of similarly enigmatic objects recently discovered locally and in the central region of our Galaxy.

  12. X-Ray Emission from J1446--4701, J1311--3430, and Other Black Widow Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arumugasamy, Prakash; Pavlov, George G.; Garmire, Gordon P.

    2015-12-01

    We present the results of detailed X-ray analysis of two black-widow pulsars (BWPs), J1446-4701 and J1311-3430. PSR J1446-4701 is a BWP with orbital parameters near the median values of the sample of known BWPs. Its X-ray emission that was detected by XMM-Newton is well characterized by a soft power-law (PL) spectrum (photon index Γ ≈ 3), and it shows no significant orbital modulations. In view of a lack of radio eclipses and an optical non-detection, the system most likely has a low orbital inclination. PSR J1311-3430 is an extreme BWP with a very compact orbit and the lowest minimum mass companion. Our Chandra data confirm the hard Γ ≈ 1.3 emission seen in previous observations. Through phase-restricted spectral analysis, we found a hint (˜2.6σ) of spectral hardening around pulsar inferior conjunction. We also provide a uniform analysis of the 12 BWPs observed with Chandra and compare their X-ray properties. Pulsars with soft, Γ > 2.5 emission seem to have lower than average X-ray and γ-ray luminosities. We do not, however, see any other prominent correlation between the pulsar’s X-ray emission characteristics and any of its other properties. The contribution of the intra-binary shock to the total X-ray emission, if any, is not discernible in this sample of pulsars with shallow observations.

  13. Probing the effects of a thermonuclear X-ray burst on the neutron star accretion flow with NuSTAR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Degenaar, N.; Koljonen, K. I. I.; Chakrabarty, D.; Kara, E.; Altamirano, D.; Miller, J. M.; Fabian, A. C.

    2016-03-01

    Observational evidence has been accumulating that thermonuclear X-ray bursts ignited on the surface of neutron stars influence the surrounding accretion flow. Here, we exploit the excellent sensitivity of NuSTAR up to 79 keV to analyse the impact of an X-ray burst on the accretion emission of the neutron star LMXB 4U 1608-52. The ≃200 s long X-ray burst occurred during a hard X-ray spectral state, and had a peak intensity of ≃30-50 per cent of the Eddington limit with no signs of photospheric radius expansion. Spectral analysis suggests that the accretion emission was enhanced up to a factor of ≃5 during the X-ray burst. We also applied a linear unsupervised decomposition method, namely non-negative matrix factorization (NMF), to study this X-ray burst. We find that the NMF performs well in characterizing the evolution of the burst emission and is a promising technique to study changes in the underlying accretion emission in more detail than is possible through conventional spectral fitting. For the burst of 4U 1608-52, the NMF suggests a possible softening of the accretion spectrum during the X-ray burst, which could potentially be ascribed to cooling of a corona. Finally, we report a small (≃3 per cent) but significant rise in the accretion emission ≃0.5 h before the X-ray burst, although it is unclear whether this was related to the X-ray burst ignition.

  14. The 2002 Outburst of the Millisecond Accreting Pulsar XTE J1751-305

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markwardt, C. B.; Swank, J. H.

    2002-12-01

    The millisecond accreting pulsar XTE J1751--305 was discovered in the galactic bulge region by the RXTE PCA in early 2002. It is one of only a handful of now-known millisecond pulsars that are presumably spinning up by mass accretion (along with SAX J1808.4--3658 and XTE J0929--314). We will present an analysis of the complete outburst of XTE J1751--305, including spectroscopy and timing. The outburst followed a similar track to the first known millisecond accreting pulsar, SAX J1808.4--3658, with a fast rise, exponential decay (time constant ~ 7 day), and a sudden cut-off. Over the outburst, the energy spectral shape remained essentially constant, and showed no strong line features. Aside from the pulsations, XTE J1751--305 also exhibited lower frequency fluctuations in the power spectrum, which are typical of low mass X-ray binaries. While there appears to be no strong kiloHertz quasiperiodic oscillations, there is some evidence for a weak and broad power spectral excess feature centered on a few hundred Hertz.

  15. The Radio/X-Ray Correlation and Black Hole Fundamental Plane for Young Radio Sources: Implications for X-Ray Origin and Accretion Mode

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Xu-Liang; Bai, Jin-Ming

    2016-02-01

    We find that the young radio sources (gigahertz-peaked spectrum and compact steep spectrum radio sources) follow in the radio/X-ray correlation with b=0.61+/- 0.07 ({L}R\\propto {L}Xb), and the fundamental plane of black hole activity with the form {log}{L}R={0.58}-0.03+0.03{log}{L}X+{0.42}-0.07+0.09{log}{M}{BH}+{13.83}-0.97+0.91 and the intrinsic scatter σ =0.29. The flatter coefficient between radio and X-ray bands denies the jet origin of the X-ray emission in these types of sources. Meanwhile, the higher ratio of X-ray luminosity to Eddington luminosity ({L}X/{L}{Edd}) suggests that the X-ray emission is produced by the hot corona coupling with the standard thin disk. The deviation with the radiative efficient fundamental plane proposed by Dong et al. is mainly due to the extended radio emission in young radio sources. This fundamental plane manifests that even the kiloparsec-scaled radio emission has a tight connection with the accretion process, and could be suitable for the radio-loud active galactic nuclei whose radio and X-ray emission are dominated by the extended jets and the radiative efficient accretion flow, respectively. Otherwise, the high-excitation galaxies and low-excitation galaxies do not have obvious distinctions in the radio/X-ray correlation and the fundamental plane.

  16. X-Ray Spectra from MHD Simulations of Accreting Black Holes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schnittman, Jeremy D.; Krolik, Julian H.; Noble, Scott C.

    2012-01-01

    We present the results of a new global radiation transport code coupled to a general relativistic magneto-hydrodynamic simulation of an accreting, nonrotating black hole. For the first time, we are able to explain from first principles in a self-consistent way the X-ray spectra observed from stellar-mass black holes, including a thermal peak, Compton reflection hump, power-law tail, and broad iron line. Varying only the mass accretion rate, we are able to reproduce the low/hard, steep power-law, and thermal-dominant states seen in most galactic black hole sources. The temperature in the corona is T(sub e) 10 keV in a boundary layer near the disk and rises smoothly to T(sub e) greater than or approximately 100 keV in low-density regions far above the disk. Even as the disk's reflection edge varies from the horizon out to approximately equal to 6M as the accretion rate decreases, we find that the shape of the Fe Ka line is remarkably constant. This is because photons emitted from the plunging region are strongly beamed into the horizon and never reach the observer. We have also carried out a basic timing analysis of the spectra and find that the fractional variability increases with photon energy and viewer inclination angle, consistent with the coronal hot spot model for X-ray fluctuations.

  17. REVISITING PUTATIVE COOL ACCRETION DISKS IN ULTRALUMINOUS X-RAY SOURCES

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, J. M.; King, A. L.; Reynolds, M. T.; Reis, R. C.; Walton, D. J.; Fabian, A. C.; Miller, M. C.

    2013-10-20

    Soft, potentially thermal spectral components observed in some ultra-luminous X-ray sources (ULXs) can be fit with models for emission from cool, optically thick accretion disks. If that description is correct, the low temperatures that are observed imply accretion onto 'intermediate-mass' black holes. Subsequent work has found that these components may follow an inverse relationship between luminosity and temperature, implying a non-blackbody origin for this emission. We have re-analyzed numerous XMM-Newton spectra of extreme ULXs. Crucially, observations wherein the source fell on a chip gap were excluded owing to their uncertain flux calibration, and the neutral column density along the line of sight to a given source was jointly determined by multiple spectra. The luminosity of the soft component is found to be positively correlated with temperature, and to be broadly consistent with L∝T {sup 4} in the measured band pass, as per blackbody emission from a standard thin disk. These results are nominally consistent with accretion onto black holes with masses above the range currently known in Galactic X-ray binaries, though there are important caveats. Emission from inhomogeneous or super-Eddington disks may also be consistent with the data.

  18. Coronal accretion: the power of X-ray emission in AGN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, B.-F.; Taam, R. E.; Qiao, E.; Yuan, W.

    2016-02-01

    The optical/UV and X-ray emissions in luminous AGN are commonly believed to be produced in an accretion disk and an embedded hot corona respectively. We explore the possibility that a geometrically thick coronal gas flow, which is supplied by gravitational capture of interstellar medium or stellar wind, condenses partially to a geometrically thin cold disk and accretes via a thin disk and a corona onto the supermassive black hole. We found that for mass supply rates less than about 0.01 (expressed in Eddington units), condensation does not occur and the accretion flow takes the form of a corona/ADAF. For higher mass supply rates, corona gas condenses to the disk. As a consequence, the coronal mass flow rate decreases and the cool mass flow rate increases towards the black hole. Here the thin disk is characterized by the condensation rate of hot gas as it flows towards the black hole. With increase of mass supply rate, condensation becomes more efficient, while the mass flow rate of the coronal gas attains values of order 0.02 in the innermost regions of the disk, which can help to elucidate the production of strong X-ray with respect to the optical and ultraviolet radiation in high luminosity AGN.

  19. Observations of Accreting Pulsars with the FERMI-GBM

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson-Hodge, Colleen

    2012-01-01

    The Gamma-ray Burst Monitor (GBM) on-board Fermi comprises 12 NaI detectors spanning the 8-1000 keV band and 2 BGO detectors spanning the 100 keV to 40 MeV band. These detectors view the entire unocculted sky, providing long (approximately 40 ks/day) observations of accreting pulsars daily, which allow long-term monitoring of spin-frequencies and pulsed uxes via epoch-folded searches plus daily blind searches for new pulsars. Phase averaged uxes can be measured using the Earth occultation technique. In this talk I will present highlights of GBM accretion-powered pulsar monitoring such as the discovery of a torque reversal in 4U1626-67, a high-energy QPO in A0535+26, and evidence for a stable accretion disk in OAO 1657-415.

  20. THE PROPER MOTION AND X-RAY ANALYSIS OF THE PULSAR WIND NEBULA, PSR J1741-2054 USING CHANDRA.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Auchettl, Katie; Slane, Patrick O.; Romani, Roger W.; Kargaltsev, Oleg; Pavlov, George G.

    2014-08-01

    A pulsar dissipates its rotational energy by generating relativistic winds, which in turn produces a population of high energy electrons and positions that we observe as a synchrotron emitting nebula. If the pulsar has a high space velocity, the corresponding nebula will have a bow-shock morphology due to the pulsar wind being confined by ram pressure. Pulsar wind nebulae (PWNe) provide a good test bed to study the dynamics and interaction of relativistic outflows with their environment and the corresponding shocks that result from these interactions. They can also aid in understanding the evolution of the neutron star and the properties of the local medium with which they are interacting. Here we report on the X-ray analysis of PSR J1741-2054 carried out as a part of the Chandra XVP program (6 ACIS-S observations, totalling ~300 ks over 5 months). By registering this new epoch of observations using X-ray point sources in the field of view to an archival observation taken 3.2 years earlier, we are able to measure the proper motion of the pulsar with >3σ significance. We also investigate the spatial and spectral properties of the pulsar, its compact nebula and extended tail. We find that the compact nebula can be well described with an absorbed power-law with photon index of Γ=1.6+/-0.2, while the tail shows no evidence of variation in the spectral index with the distance from the pulsar. We have also investigated the X-ray spectrum of the neutron star. We find nonthermal emission accompanied by a significant thermal component and will provide constraints on the overall nature of the emission.

  1. Testing theories for longterm accretion variability in black hole X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cambier, Hal J.

    Many X-ray sources are now understood to be "black hole X-ray binaries'' in which a stellar remnant black hole either tidally "squeezes'' gas off a companion star, or pulls in some fraction the companion's wind. This gas can drain inward through a dense, thin disk characterized by thermalized radiation, or a sparse and radiatively-inefficient flow, or some combination of the two. Observations at other energies often provide crucial information, but our primary tools to study accretion, especially closest to the black hole, are X-ray spectra and their time evolution. This evolution includes numerous behaviors spanning orders of magnitude in timescale and luminosity, and also hints at spatial structure since draining is generally faster at smaller radii. This includes variability at time-scales of weeks to months which remains difficult to explain despite an abundance of possible variability mechanisms since direct simulations covering the full spatial and temporal range remain impractical. After reviewing general aspects of accretion, I present both more and less familiar forms of longterm variability. Based on these, I argue the problem involves finding a physical process (or combination) that can generate repeatable yet adjustable cycles in luminosity and evolution of low and high energy spectral components, while letting the ionization instability dominate conventional outbursts. Specific models examined include: disks embedded in, and interacting with, hot, sparse flows, and another instability that quenches viscous-draining of the disk at more fundamental level. Testing these theories, alone and in combination, motivates building a very general and simplified numerical model presented here. I find that two-phase flow models still predict excessive recondensation in LMC X-3 among other problems, while the viscosity-quenching instability may account for rapid drops and slow recoveries in disk accretion rate but also likely requires diffusivity orders of magnitude

  2. An Accretion Disk-outflow Model for Hysteretic State Transition in X-Ray Binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cao, Xinwu

    2016-01-01

    We suggest a model of the advection-dominated accretion flow (ADAF) with magnetically driven outflows to explain the hysteretic state transition observed in X-ray binaries (XRBs). The transition from a thin disk to an ADAF occurs when the mass accretion rate is below a critical value. The critical mass accretion rate for the ADAF can be estimated by equating the equilibration timescale to the accretion timescale of the ADAF, which is sensitive to its radial velocity. The radial velocity of thin disks is very small, which leads to the advection of the external field in thin disks becoming very inefficient. ADAFs are present in the low/hard states of XRBs, and their radial velocity is large compared with the thin disk. The external field can be dragged inward efficiently by the ADAF, so a strong large-scale magnetic field threading the ADAF can be formed, which may accelerate a fraction of gas in the ADAF into the outflows. Such outflows may carry away a large amount of angular momentum from the ADAF, which significantly increases the radial velocity of the ADAF. This leads to a high critical mass accretion rate, below which an ADAF with magnetic outflows can survive. Our calculations show that the critical luminosity of the ADAF with magnetic outflows can be one order of magnitude higher than that for a conventional ADAF, if the ratio of gas to magnetic pressure β ∼ 4 in the disk. This can naturally explain the hysteretic state transition observed in XRBs.

  3. Evidence from Quasi-Periodic Oscillations for a Millisecond Pulsar in the Low Mass X-Ray Binary 4U 0614+091

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ford, E.; Kaaret, P.; Tavani, M.; Barret, D.; Bloser, P.; Grindlay, J.; Harmon, B. A.; Paciesas, W. S.; Zhang, S. N.

    1997-01-01

    We have detected quasi-periodic oscillations (QPOs) near 1 kHz from the low mass X-ray binary 4U 0614+091 in observations with RXTE. The observations span several months and sample the source over a large range of X-ray luminosity. In every interval QPOs are present above 400 Hz with fractional RMS amplitudes from 3 to 12% over the full PCA band. At high count rates, two high frequency QPOs are detected simultaneously. The difference of their frequency centroids is consistent with a constant value of 323 Hz in all observations. During one interval a third signal is detected at 328 +/- 2 Hz. This suggests the system has a stable 'clock' which is most likely the neutron star with spin period 3.1 msec. Thus, our observations of 4U 0614+091 and those of 4U 1728-34 provide the first evidence for millisecond pulsars within low-mass X-ray binary systems and reveal the 'missing-link' between millisecond radiopulsars and the late stages of binary evolution in low mass X-ray binaries. The constant difference of the high frequency QPOs sug,,ests a beat-frequency interpretation. In this model, the high frequency QPO is associated with the Keplerian frequency of the inner accretion disk and the lower frequency QPO is a 'beat' between the differential rotation frequency of the inner disk and the spinning neutron star. Assuming the high frequency QPO is a Keplerian orbital frequency for the accretion disk, we find a maximum mass of 1.9 solar mass and a maximum radius of 17 km for the neutron star.

  4. Luminosity-dependent spectral and timing properties of the accreting pulsar GX 304-1 measured with INTEGRAL

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malacaria, C.; Klochkov, D.; Santangelo, A.; Staubert, R.

    2015-09-01

    Context. Be/X-ray binaries show outbursts with peak luminosities up to a few times 1037 erg/s, during which they can be observed and studied in detail. Most (if not all) Be/X-ray binaries harbor accreting pulsars, whose X-ray spectra in many cases contain cyclotron resonant scattering features related to the magnetic field of the sources. Spectral variations as a function of luminosity and of the rotational phase of the neutron star are observed in many accreting pulsars. Aims: We explore X-ray spectral and timing properties of the Be/X-ray binary GX 304-1 during an outburst episode. Specifically, we investigate the behavior of the cyclotron resonant scattering feature, the continuum spectral parameters, the pulse period, and the energy- and luminosity-resolved pulse profiles. Methods: We analyze the INTEGRAL data from the two JEM-X modules, ISGRI and SPI, covering the 2012 January-February outburst, divided into six observations. We obtain pulse profiles in two energy bands, phase-averaged and phase-resolved spectra for each observation. We combine the luminosity-resolved spectral and timing analysis to probe the accretion geometry and the beaming patterns of the rotating neutron star. Results: We confirm the positive luminosity dependence of the cyclotron line energy in GX 304-1 and report a dependence of the photon index on luminosity. Using a pulse-phase connection technique, we find a pulse period solution valid for the entire outburst. Our pulse-phase resolved analysis shows that the centroid energy of the cyclotron line varies only slightly with pulse phase, while other spectral parameters show more pronounced variations. Our results are consistent with a scenario in which, as the pulsar rotates, we are exploring only a small portion of its beam pattern. Appendix A is available in electronic form at http://www.aanda.org

  5. Ionization break-out from millisecond pulsar wind nebulae: an X-ray probe of the origin of superluminous supernovae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Metzger, Brian D.; Vurm, Indrek; Hascoët, Romain; Beloborodov, Andrei M.

    2014-01-01

    Magnetic spin-down of a rapidly rotating (millisecond) neutron star has been proposed as the power source of hydrogen-poor `superluminous' supernovae (SLSNe-I). However, producing an unambiguous test that can distinguish this model from alternatives, such as circumstellar interaction, has proven challenging. After the supernova explosion, the pulsar wind inflates a hot cavity behind the expanding stellar ejecta: the nascent millisecond pulsar wind nebula. Electron/positron pairs injected by the wind cool through inverse Compton scattering and synchrotron emission, producing a pair cascade and hard X-ray spectrum inside the nebula. These X-rays ionize the inner exposed side of the ejecta, driving an ionization front that propagates outwards with time. Under some conditions this front can breach the ejecta surface within months after the optical supernova peak, allowing ˜0.1-1 keV photons to escape the nebula unattenuated with a characteristic luminosity LX ˜ 1043-1045 erg s-1. This `ionization break-out' may explain the luminous X-ray emission observed from the transient SCP 06F, providing direct evidence that this SLSN was indeed engine powered. Luminous break-out requires a low ejecta mass and that the spin-down time of the pulsar be comparable to the photon diffusion time-scale at optical maximum, the latter condition being similar to that required for a supernova with a high optical fluence. These relatively special requirements may explain why most SLSNe-I are not accompanied by detectable X-ray emission. Global asymmetry of the supernova ejecta increases the likelihood of an early break-out along the direction of lowest density. Atomic states with lower threshold energies are more readily ionized at earlier times near optical maximum, allowing `UV break-out' across a wider range of pulsar and ejecta properties than X-ray break-out, possibly contributing to the blue/UV colours of SLSNe-I.

  6. The young pulsar PSR B0540-69.3 and its synchrotron nebula in the optical and X-rays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Serafimovich, N. I.; Shibanov, Yu. A.; Lundqvist, P.; Sollerman, J.

    2004-10-01

    The young PSR B0540-69.3 in the LMC is the only pulsar (except the Crab pulsar) for which a near-UV spectrum has been obtained. However, the absolute flux and spectral index of the HST/FOS spectrum are significantly higher than suggested by previous broad-band time-resolved groundbased UBVRI photometry. To investigate this difference, observations with ESO/VLT/FORS1 and analysis of HST/WFPC2 archival data were done. We show that the HST and VLT spectral data for the pulsar have ⪆50% nebular contamination and that this is the reason for the above-mentioned difference. The broadband HST spectrum for the range 3300-8000 Å is clearly nonthermal and has a negative spectral index, Fν ∝ ν-α with αν = 1.07+0.20-0.19. This is different from the almost flat spectrum of the Crab pulsar, and also steeper than for the previously published broadband photometry of PSR B0540-69.3. We have also studied the spatial variations of the brightness and spectral index of the Pulsar Wind Nebula (PWN) around the pulsar, and find no significant spectral index variation over the PWN. The HST data show a clear asymmetry of the surface brightness distribution along the major axis of the torus-like structure of the PWN with respect to the pulsar position, also seen in Chandra/HRC X-ray images. This is different from the Crab PWN and likely linked to the asymmetry of the surrounding SN ejecta. The HST/WFPC2 archival data have an epoch separation of 4 years, and this allows us to estimate the proper motion of the pulsar. We find a motion of 4.9±2.3 mas yr-1 (corresponding to a transverse velocity of 1190±560 km s-1) along the southern jet of the PWN. If this is confirmed at a higher significance level by future observations, this makes PSR B0540-69.3 the third pulsar with a proper motion aligned with the jet axis of its PWN, which poses constraints on pulsar kick models. To establish the multiwavelength spectrum of the pulsar and its PWN, we have included recent Chandra X-ray data, and

  7. X-RAY INVESTIGATION OF THE DIFFUSE EMISSION AROUND PLAUSIBLE {gamma}-RAY EMITTING PULSAR WIND NEBULAE IN KOOKABURRA REGION

    SciTech Connect

    Kishishita, Tetsuichi; Bamba, Aya; Uchiyama, Yasunobu

    2012-05-10

    We report on the results from Suzaku X-ray observations of the radio complex region called Kookaburra, which includes two adjacent TeV {gamma}-ray sources HESS J1418-609 and HESS J1420-607. The Suzaku observation revealed X-ray diffuse emission around a middle-aged pulsar PSR J1420-6048 and a plausible pulsar wind nebula (PWN) Rabbit with elongated sizes of {sigma}{sub X} = 1.'66 and {sigma}{sub X} = 1.'49, respectively. The peaks of the diffuse X-ray emission are located within the {gamma}-ray excess maps obtained by H.E.S.S. and the offsets from the {gamma}-ray peaks are 2.'8 for PSR J1420-6048 and 4.'5 for Rabbit. The X-ray spectra of the two sources were well reproduced by absorbed power-law models with {Gamma} = 1.7-2.3. The spectral shapes tend to become softer according to the distance from the X-ray peaks. Assuming the one-zone electron emission model as the first-order approximation, the ambient magnetic field strengths of HESS J1420-607 and HESS J1418-609 can be estimated as 3 {mu}G and 2.5 {mu}G, respectively. The X-ray spectral and spatial properties strongly support that both TeV sources are PWNe, in which electrons and positrons accelerated at termination shocks of the pulsar winds are losing their energies via the synchrotron radiation and inverse Compton scattering as they are transported outward.

  8. X-Ray Investigation of the Diffuse Emission around Plausible γ-Ray Emitting Pulsar Wind Nebulae in Kookaburra Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kishishita, Tetsuichi; Bamba, Aya; Uchiyama, Yasunobu; Tanaka, Yasuyuki; Takahashi, Tadayuki

    2012-05-01

    We report on the results from Suzaku X-ray observations of the radio complex region called Kookaburra, which includes two adjacent TeV γ-ray sources HESS J1418-609 and HESS J1420-607. The Suzaku observation revealed X-ray diffuse emission around a middle-aged pulsar PSR J1420-6048 and a plausible pulsar wind nebula (PWN) Rabbit with elongated sizes of σX = 1farcm66 and σX = 1farcm49, respectively. The peaks of the diffuse X-ray emission are located within the γ-ray excess maps obtained by H.E.S.S. and the offsets from the γ-ray peaks are 2farcm8 for PSR J1420-6048 and 4farcm5 for Rabbit. The X-ray spectra of the two sources were well reproduced by absorbed power-law models with Γ = 1.7-2.3. The spectral shapes tend to become softer according to the distance from the X-ray peaks. Assuming the one-zone electron emission model as the first-order approximation, the ambient magnetic field strengths of HESS J1420-607 and HESS J1418-609 can be estimated as 3 μG and 2.5 μG, respectively. The X-ray spectral and spatial properties strongly support that both TeV sources are PWNe, in which electrons and positrons accelerated at termination shocks of the pulsar winds are losing their energies via the synchrotron radiation and inverse Compton scattering as they are transported outward.

  9. Boundary layer, accretion disk and X-ray variability in the luminous LMXBs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilfanov, M.; Revnivtsev, M.; Molkov, S.

    2003-10-01

    Using Fourier frequency resolved X-ray spectroscopy we study short term spectral variability in luminous LMXBs. With RXTE/PCA observations of 4U1608-52 and GX 340+0 on the horizontal/normal branch of the color-intensity diagram we show that aperiodic and quasiperiodic variability on ~ second-millisecond time scales is caused primarily by variations of the luminosity of the boundary layer. The emission of the accretion disk is less variable on these time scales and its power density spectrum follows Pdisk(f)~ f-1 law, contributing to observed flux variation at low frequencies and low energies only. The kHz QPOs have the same origin as variability at lower frequencies, i.e. independent of the nature of the ``clock'', the actual luminosity modulation takes place on the neutron star surface. The boundary layer spectrum remains nearly constant in the course of the luminosity variations and is represented to certain accuracy by the Fourier frequency resolved spectrum. In the considered range dot {M} ~ (0.1-1) dot {M}_Edd it depends weakly on the global mass accretion rate and in the limit dot {M} ~ dot {M}_Edd is close to Wien spectrum with kT ~ 2.4 keV (in the distant observer's frame). The spectrum of the accretion disk emission is significantly softer and in the 3-20 keV range is reasonably well described by a relativistic disk model with a mass accretion rate consistent with the value inferred from the observed X-ray flux.

  10. Modeling X-ray Absorbers in AGNs with MHD-Driven Accretion-Disk Winds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fukumura, Keigo; Kazanas, D.; Shrader, C. R.; Tombesi, F.; Contopoulos, J.; Behar, E.

    2013-04-01

    We have proposed a systematic view of the observed X-ray absorbers, namely warm absorbers (WAs) in soft X-ray and highly-ionized ultra-fast outflows (UFOs), in the context of magnetically-driven accretion-disk wind models. While potentially complicated by variability and thermal instability in these energetic outflows, in this simplistic model we have calculated 2D kinematic field as well as density and ionization structure of the wind with density profile of 1/r corresponding to a constant column distribution per decade of ionization parameter. In particular we show semi-analytically that the inner layer of the disk-wind manifests itself as the strongly-ionized fast outflows while the outer layer is identified as the moderately-ionized absorbers. The computed characteristics of these two apparently distinct absorbers are consistent with X-ray data (i.e. a factor of ~100 difference in column and ionization parameters as well as low wind velocity vs. near-relativistic flow). With the predicted contour curves for these wind parameters one can constrain allowed regions for the presence of WAs and UFOs.The model further implies that the UFO's gas pressure is comparable to that of the observed radio jet in 3C111 suggesting that the magnetized disk-wind with density profile of 1/r is a viable agent to help sustain such a self-collimated jet at small radii.

  11. Geometry of X-ray sources in accreting black-hole binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zdziarski, Andrzej

    2016-07-01

    According to the long-dominant paradigm, the accretion disc in the hard state is truncated at a radius >> ISCO whereas it reaches the ISCO in the soft state. This explains many observed phenomena, e.g., spectral and variability differences between the states and transition from quiescence in transients. On the other hand, there have been many claims that the disc extends to the ISCO in the hard state, and the X-ray source has been postulated to be a lamppost very close to the horizon. I will discuss the current evidence for and against the disc truncation and the lamppost geometry, and their implications. If the lamppost model were correct, most of the produced photons would be trapped by the black hole, and the source luminosity as measured at infinity would then be much larger than that observed. Also, the luminosity measured in the local frame would be >> that observed, due to the photon trapping, time dilation and redshift, and T_e would be significantly higher than that observed. I will also present results of a study of off of the X-ray spectra of the hard state of GX 339-4 observed by XMM-Newton. These results show the truncation radius to be ISCO for all the data sets. These radii also agree with the independent determination of De Marco et al. (2015) based on soft X-ray lags.

  12. Measuring the stellar wind parameters in IGR J17544-2619 and Vela X-1 constrains the accretion physics in supergiant fast X-ray transient and classical supergiant X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giménez-García, A.; Shenar, T.; Torrejón, J. M.; Oskinova, L.; Martínez-Núñez, S.; Hamann, W.-R.; Rodes-Roca, J. J.; González-Galán, A.; Alonso-Santiago, J.; González-Fernández, C.; Bernabeu, G.; Sander, A.

    2016-06-01

    two stars is their terminal velocities (ν∞ = 1500 km s-1 in IGR J17544-2619 and ν∞ = 700 km s-1 in Vela X-1), which have important consequences on the X-ray luminosity of these sources. Conclusions: The donors of IGR J17544-2619 and Vela X-1 have similar spectral types as well as similar parameters that physically characterize them and their spectra. In addition, the orbital parameters of the systems are similar too, with a nearly circular orbit and short orbital period. However, they show moderate differences in their stellar wind velocity and the spin period of their neutron star which has a strong impact on the X-ray luminosity of the sources. This specific combination of wind speed and pulsar spin favors an accretion regime with a persistently high luminosity in Vela X-1, while it favors an inhibiting accretion mechanism in IGR J17544-2619. Our study demonstrates that the relative wind velocity is critical in class determination for the HMXBs hosting a supergiant donor, given that it may shift the accretion mechanism from direct accretion to propeller regimes when combined with other parameters.

  13. X-ray variability of SS 433: effects of the supercritical accretion disc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atapin, Kirill; Fabrika, Sergei; Medvedev, Aleksei; Vinokurov, Alexander

    2015-01-01

    We study a stochastic variability of SS 433 in the 10-4-5 × 10-2 Hz frequency range based on RXTE data, and on simultaneous observations with RXTE and optical telescopes. We find that the cross-correlation functions and power spectra depend drastically on the precession phase of the supercritical accretion disc. When the wind funnel of the disc is maximally open to the observer, a flat part emerges in the power spectrum; a break is observed at the frequency 1.7 × 10-3 Hz, with a power-law index β ≈ 1.67 at higher frequencies. The soft emission forming mostly in the jets lags behind the hard and optical emission. When the observer does not see the funnel and jets (the `edge-on' disc), the power spectrum is described by a single power-law with β ≈ 1.34 and no correlations between X-ray ranges are detected. We investigated two mechanisms to explain the observed variability at the open disc phase: (1) reflection of radiation at the funnel wall (X-rays and optical) and (2) the gas cooling in the jets (X-rays only). The X-ray variability is determined by the contribution of both mechanisms; however, the contribution of the jets is much higher. We found that the funnel size is (2-2.5) × 1012 cm, and the opening angle is ϑf ˜ 50°. X-ray jets may consist of three fractions with different densities: 8 × 1013, 3 × 1013 and 5 × 1011 cm-3, with most of the jet's mass falling within the latter fraction. We suppose that revealed flat part in the power spectrum may be related to an abrupt change in the disc structure and viscous time-scale at the spherization radius, because the accretion disc becomes thick at this radius, h/r ˜ 1. The extent of the flat spectrum depends on the variation of viscosity at the spherization radius.

  14. MAGNETOHYDRODYNAMIC ACCRETION DISK WINDS AS X-RAY ABSORBERS IN ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI

    SciTech Connect

    Fukumura, Keigo; Kazanas, Demosthenes; Behar, Ehud

    2010-05-20

    We present the two-dimensional ionization structure of self-similar magnetohydrodynamic winds off accretion disks around and irradiated by a central X-ray point source. On the basis of earlier observational clues and theoretical arguments, we focus our attention on a subset of these winds, namely those with radial density dependence n(r) {proportional_to} 1/r (r is the spherical radial coordinate). We employ the photoionization code XSTAR to compute the ionic abundances of a large number of ions of different elements and then compile their line-of-sight (LOS) absorption columns. We focus our attention on the distribution of the column density of the various ions as a function of the ionization parameter {xi} (or equivalently r) and the angle {theta}. Particular attention is paid to the absorption measure distribution (AMD), namely their hydrogen-equivalent column per logarithmic {xi} interval, dN{sub H}/dlog {xi}, which provides a measure of the winds' radial density profiles. For the chosen density profile n(r) {proportional_to} 1/r, the AMD is found to be independent of {xi}, in good agreement with its behavior inferred from the X-ray spectra of several active galactic nuclei (AGNs). For the specific wind structure and X-ray spectrum, we also compute detailed absorption line profiles for a number of ions to obtain their LOS velocities, v {approx} 100-300 km s{sup -1} (at log {xi} {approx} 2-3) for Fe XVII and v {approx} 1000-4000 km s{sup -1} (at log {xi} {approx} 4-5) for Fe XXV, in good agreement with the observation. Our models describe the X-ray absorption properties of these winds with only two parameters, namely the mass-accretion rate m-dot and the LOS angle {theta}. The probability of obscuration of the X-ray ionizing source in these winds decreases with increasing m-dot and increases steeply with the LOS inclination angle {theta}. As such, we concur with previous authors that these wind configurations, viewed globally, incorporate all the requisite

  15. THE DUST-SCATTERING X-RAY RINGS OF THE ANOMALOUS X-RAY PULSAR 1E 1547.0-5408

    SciTech Connect

    Tiengo, A.; Vianello, G.; Esposito, P.; Mereghetti, S.; Giuliani, A.; Israel, G. L.; Stella, L.; Bernardini, F.; Zane, S.; Rea, N.; Goetz, D.; Gehrels, N.

    2010-02-10

    On 2009 January 22 numerous strong bursts were detected from the anomalous X-ray pulsar 1E 1547.0-5408. Swift/XRT and XMM-Newton/EPIC observations carried out in the following two weeks led to the discovery of three X-ray rings centered on this source. The ring radii increased with time following the expansion law expected for a short impulse of X-rays scattered by three dust clouds. Assuming different models for the dust composition and grain size distribution, we fit the intensity decay of each ring as a function of time at different energies, obtaining tight constraints on the distance of the X-ray source. Although the distance strongly depends on the adopted dust model, we find that some models are incompatible with our X-ray data, restricting to 4-8 kpc the range of possible distances for 1E 1547.0-5408. The best-fitting dust model provides a source distance of 3.91 +- 0.07 kpc, which is compatible with the proposed association with the supernova remnant G327.24-0.13, and implies distances of 2.2 kpc, 2.6 kpc and 3.4 kpc for the dust clouds, in good agreement with the dust distribution inferred by CO line observations toward 1E 1547.0-5408. However, dust distances in agreement with CO data are also obtained for a set of similarly well-fitting models that imply a source distance of {approx}5 kpc. A distance of {approx}4-5 kpc is also favored by the fact that these dust models are already known to provide good fits to the dust-scattering halos of bright X-ray binaries. Assuming N{sub H} = 10{sup 22} cm{sup -2} in the dust cloud responsible for the brightest ring and a bremsstrahlung spectrum with kT = 100 keV, we estimate that the burst producing the X-ray ring released an energy of 10{sup 44}-10{sup 45} erg in the 1-100 keV band, suggesting that this burst was the brightest flare without any long-lasting pulsating tail ever detected from a magnetar.

  16. 16 yr of RXTE monitoring of five anomalous X-ray pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Dib, Rim; Kaspi, Victoria M. E-mail: vkaspi@physics.mcgill.ca

    2014-03-20

    We present a summary of the long-term evolution of various properties of the five non-transient anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs) 1E 1841–045, RXS J170849.0–400910, 1E 2259+586, 4U 0142+61, and 1E 1048.1–5937, regularly monitored with RXTE from 1996 to 2012. We focus on three properties of these sources: the evolution of the timing, pulsed flux, and pulse profile. We report several new timing anomalies and radiative events, including a putative anti-glitch seen in 1E 2259+586 in 2009, and a second epoch of very large spin-down rate fluctuations in 1E 1048.1–5937 following a large flux outburst. We compile the properties of the 11 glitches and 4 glitch candidates observed from these 5 AXPs between 1996 and 2012. Overall, these monitoring observations reveal several apparent patterns in the behavior of this sample of AXPs: large radiative changes in AXPs (including long-lived flux enhancements, short bursts, and pulse profile changes) are rare, occurring typically only every few years per source; large radiative changes are almost always accompanied by some form of timing anomaly, usually a spin-up glitch; only 20%-30% of timing anomalies are accompanied by any form of radiative change. We find that AXP radiative behavior at the times of radiatively loud glitches is sufficiently similar to suggest common physical origins. The similarity in glitch properties when comparing radiatively loud and radiatively silent glitches in AXPs suggests a common physical origin in the stellar interior. Finally, the overall similarity of AXP and radio pulsar glitches suggests a common physical origin for both phenomena.

  17. Hercules X-1: Spectral Variability of an X-Ray Pulsar in a Stellar Binary System. Ph.D. Thesis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pravdo, S. H.

    1976-01-01

    A cosmic X-ray spectroscopy experiment onboard the Orbiting Solar Observatory 8 (OSO-8), observed Her x-1 continuously for approximately 8 days. Spectral-temporal correlations of the X-ray emission were obtained. The major results concern observations of: (1) iron band emission, (2) spectral hardening (increase in effective x-ray temperature) within the X-ray pulse, and (3) a transition from an X-ray low state to a high state. The spectrum obtained prior to the high state can be interpreted as reflected emission from a hot coronal gas surrounding an accretion disk, which itself shields the primary X-ray source from the line of sight during the low state. The spectral hardening within the X-ray pulse was indicative of the beaming mechanism at the neutron star surface. The hardest spectrum by pulse phase was identified with the line of sight close to the Her x-1 magnetic dipole axis, and the X-ray pencil beam become harder with decreasing angle between the line of sight and the dipole axis.

  18. EVIDENCE FOR ACCRETION RATE CHANGE DURING TYPE I X-RAY BURSTS

    SciTech Connect

    Worpel, Hauke; Galloway, Duncan K.; Price, Daniel J.

    2013-08-01

    The standard approach for time-resolved X-ray spectral analysis of thermonuclear bursts involves subtraction of the pre-burst emission as background. This approach implicitly assumes that the persistent flux remains constant throughout the burst. We reanalyzed 332 photospheric radius expansion bursts observed from 40 sources by the Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer, introducing a multiplicative factor f{sub a} to the persistent emission contribution in our spectral fits. We found that for the majority of spectra the best-fit value of f{sub a} is significantly greater than 1, suggesting that the persistent emission typically increases during a burst. Elevated f{sub a} values were not found solely during the radius expansion interval of the burst, but were also measured in the cooling tail. The modified model results in a lower average value of the {chi}{sup 2} fit statistic, indicating superior spectral fits, but not yet to the level of formal statistical consistency for all the spectra. We interpret the elevated f{sub a} values as an increase of the mass accretion rate onto the neutron star during the burst, likely arising from the effects of Poynting-Robertson drag on the disk material. We measured an inverse correlation of f{sub a} with the persistent flux, consistent with theoretical models of the disk response. We suggest that this modified approach may provide more accurate burst spectral parameters, as well as offering a probe of the accretion disk structure.

  19. The effect of X-ray irradiation on the time dependent behavior of accretion disks with stochastic perturbations.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maqbool, Bari; Misra, Ranjeev; Iqbal, Naseer

    The UV emission from X-ray binaries, may arise from the outer accretion disk. The structure of the outer disk may be altered due to the presence of X-ray irradiation and we discuss the physical regimes where this may occur and point out certain X-ray binaries where this effect may be important. The long term X-ray variability of these sources is believed to be due stochastic fluctuations in the outer disk, which propagate inwards giving rise to accretion rate variation in the X-ray producing inner regions. Our motivation is to understand the effect of X-ray irradiation in such a scenario. To this end, a time dependent hydrodynamical framework with X-ray irradiation needs to be set up, such that the effect of fluctuations in the outer disk can be studied. Following earlier works, we solve for the steady state accretion disk structure taking into account irradiation. To understand the qualitative behavior, we adopt simplistic assumptions that the disk is fully ionized and it is not warped. We then proceeded to develop a time dependent hydrodynamic code, which in the absence of perturbations is numerically stable. A sinusoidal perturbation was introduced at different radii, and its effect on the mass accretion rate in the inner disk was computed. The code was carefully studied to verify that the results are invariant to the numerical time steps and radial bins used. While we didn't find any oscillatory or limit cycle behavior due to the X-ray irradiation feedback, our results show irradiation enhances the X-ray variability at time-scales corresponding to the viscous time-scales of the irradiated disk.

  20. Monte Carlo-based multiphysics coupling analysis of x-ray pulsar telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Liansheng; Deng, Loulou; Mei, Zhiwu; Zuo, Fuchang; Zhou, Hao

    2015-10-01

    X-ray pulsar telescope (XPT) is a complex optical payload, which involves optical, mechanical, electrical and thermal disciplines. The multiphysics coupling analysis (MCA) plays an important role in improving the in-orbit performance. However, the conventional MCA methods encounter two serious problems in dealing with the XTP. One is that both the energy and reflectivity information of X-ray can't be taken into consideration, which always misunderstands the essence of XPT. Another is that the coupling data can't be transferred automatically among different disciplines, leading to computational inefficiency and high design cost. Therefore, a new MCA method for XPT is proposed based on the Monte Carlo method and total reflective theory. The main idea, procedures and operational steps of the proposed method are addressed in detail. Firstly, it takes both the energy and reflectivity information of X-ray into consideration simultaneously. And formulate the thermal-structural coupling equation and multiphysics coupling analysis model based on the finite element method. Then, the thermalstructural coupling analysis under different working conditions has been implemented. Secondly, the mirror deformations are obtained using construction geometry function. Meanwhile, the polynomial function is adopted to fit the deformed mirror and meanwhile evaluate the fitting error. Thirdly, the focusing performance analysis of XPT can be evaluated by the RMS. Finally, a Wolter-I XPT is taken as an example to verify the proposed MCA method. The simulation results show that the thermal-structural coupling deformation is bigger than others, the vary law of deformation effect on the focusing performance has been obtained. The focusing performances of thermal-structural, thermal, structural deformations have degraded 30.01%, 14.35% and 7.85% respectively. The RMS of dispersion spot are 2.9143mm, 2.2038mm and 2.1311mm. As a result, the validity of the proposed method is verified through

  1. Detection of cyclotron resonance scattering feature in high-mass X-ray binary pulsar SMC X-2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jaisawal, Gaurava K.; Naik, Sachindra

    2016-09-01

    We report broad-band spectral properties of the high-mass X-ray binary pulsar SMC X-2 by using three simultaneous Nuclear Spectroscopy Telescope Array and Swift/XRT observations during its 2015 outburst. The pulsar was significantly bright, reaching a luminosity up to as high as ˜5.5 × 1038 erg s-1 in 1-70 keV range. Spin period of the pulsar was estimated to be 2.37 s. Pulse profiles were found to be strongly luminosity dependent. The 1-70 keV energy spectrum of the pulsar was well described with three different continuum models such as (i) negative and positive power law with exponential cutoff, (ii) Fermi-Dirac cutoff power law and (iii) cutoff power-law models. Apart from the presence of an iron line at ˜6.4 keV, a model independent absorption like feature at ˜27 keV was detected in the pulsar spectrum. This feature was identified as a cyclotron absorption line and detected for the first time in this pulsar. Corresponding magnetic field of the neutron star was estimated to be ˜2.3 × 1012 G. The cyclotron line energy showed a marginal negative dependence on the luminosity. The cyclotron line parameters were found to be variable with pulse phase and interpreted as due to the effect of emission geometry or complicated structure of the pulsar magnetic field.

  2. Accretion in young stars: measure of the stream velocity of TW Hya from the X-ray Doppler shift

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Argiroffi, Costanza; Bonito, Rosaria; Orlando, Salvatore; Miceli, Marco; Peres, Giovanni

    2015-09-01

    High-resolution X-ray spectra are a unique tool to investigate the accretion process in young stars. In fact X-rays allow to investigate the accretion-shock region, where the infalling material is heated by strong shocks due to the impact with the denser stellar atmosphere. Here we show for the first time that it is possible to constrain the velocity of the accretion stream by measuring the Doppler shift of the emitted X-rays. To this aim we analyzed the deep Chandra/HETGS observation of the accreting young star TW Hya. We selected a sample of emission lines free from significant blends, fitted them with gaussian profiles, computed the radial velocity corresponding to each line, and averaged these velocities to obtain an accurate estimate of the global velocity of the X-ray emitting plasma. After correcting for Earth's motion, we compared this observed velocity with the photospheric radial velocity. In order to check this procedure we applied the same technique to other Chandra/HETGS spectra of single stars, whose X-rays are due only to coronal plasma. While spectra of pure coronal sources provide Doppler shifts in agreement with the known stellar radial velocity, we found that the X-ray spectrum of TW Hya is red-shifted by ~30-40 km/s with respect to the stellar photosphere. This proves that the X-ray emitting plasma on TW Hya is moving with respect to the stellar surface, definitively confirming that it originates in the accretion-shock region. The observed velocity suggests that the base of the accretion region is located at low latitudes of the stellar surface.

  3. Looking into the Theory of Pulsar Accretion: The Case of XTE J1946+274

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marcu, Diana Monica; Pottschmidt, Katja; Kühnel, Matthias; Wolff, Michael Thomas; Becker, Peter A.; Müller, Sebastian; Hemphill, Paul Britton; Caballero, Isabel; Finger, Mark H.; Jenke, Peter; Wilson-Hodge, Colleen; Fuerst, Felix; Grinberg, Victoria; Kreykenbohm, Ingo; Klochkov, Dmitry; Rothschild, Richard E.; Terada, Yukikatsu; Enoto, Teruaki; Iwakiri, Wataru; Nakajima, Motoki; Wilms, Joern

    2014-08-01

    XTE J1946+274 is a transient accreting pulsar with a Be companion and a Cyclotron Resonance Scattering Feature (CRSF). It has been observed during several outbursts, with multiple instruments, and over a large range of luminosities. We extend previous studies to low flux using a Suzaku observation from the end of an outburst. This study focuses on the relationship between the cyclotron line energy and X-ray luminosity, which is believed to be linked to the physical processes occurring in the CRSF forming region. The physics of pulsar accretion, i.e., the process of plasma flow onto the neutron star surface, can be further constrained from its spectral properties. To this end, we discuss a new implementation of the physical continuum model developed by Becker and Wolff (2007, ApJ 654, 435). The model comprises Comptonized black body, bremsstrahlung, and cyclotron emission. We discuss preliminary results of applying the new tool to the test case of XTE J1946+274. We are working towards making this pulsar continuum model available in Xspec.

  4. Discovery of the Accretion-Powered Millisecond Pulsar SWIFT 51756.9-2508 with a Low-Mass Companion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krimm, H.A.; Markwardt, C.B.; Deloye, C.J.; Romano, P.; Chakrabarty, S.; Campana. S.; Cummings, J.C.; Galloway, D.K.; Gehrels, N.; Hartman, J.M.; Kaaret, P.; Morgan, E.H.; Tueller, J

    2007-01-01

    We report on the discovery by the Swift Gamma-Ray Burst Explorer of the eighth known transient accretion-powered millisecond pulsar: SWIFT J1756.9-2508, as part of routine observations with the Swift Burst Alert Telescope hard X-ray transient monitor. The pulsar was subsequently observed by both the X-Ray Telescope on Swift and the Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer Proportional Counter Array. It has a spin frequency of 182 Hz (5.5 ms) and an orbital period of 54.7 minutes. The minimum companion mass is between 0.0067 and 0.0086 Solar Mass, depending on the mass of the neutron star, and the upper limit on the mass is 0.030 Solar Mass (95% confidence level). Such a low mass is inconsistent with brown dwarf models. and comparison with white dwarf models suggests that the companion is a He-dominated donor whose thermal cooling has been at least modestly slowed by irradiation from the accretion flux. No X-ray bursts. dips, eclipses or quasi-periodic oscillations were detected. The current outburst lasted approx. 13 days and no earlier outbursts were found in archival data.

  5. The Multi-Component Nature of the Vela Pulsar Nonthermal X-ray Spectrum

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.; Strickman, Mark S.; Gwinn, Carl; McCulloch, P.; Moffet, D.; White, Nicholas E. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    We report on our analysis of a 274 ks observation of the Vela pulsar with the Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer (RXTE). The double-peaked, pulsed emission at 2 - 30 keV, which we had previously detected during a 93 ks observation, is confirmed with much improved statistics. There is now clear evidence, both in the spectrum and the light curve, that the emission in the RXTE band is a blend of two separate non-thermal components. The spectrum of the harder component connects smoothly with the OSSE, COMPTEL and EGRET spectrum and the peaks in the light curve are in phase coincidence with those of the high-energy light curve. The spectrum of the softer component is consistent with an extrapolation to the pulsed optical flux, and the second RXTE pulse is in phase coincidence with the second optical peak. In addition, we see a peak in the 2-8 keV RXTE pulse profile at the radio phase.

  6. Detailed Physical Modeling Reveals the Magnetar Nature of a Transient Anomalous X-ray Pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guever, T.; Oezel, F.; Goegues, E.; Kouveliotou, C.

    2007-01-01

    Anomalous X-ray Pulsars (AXPs) belong to a class of neutron stars believed to harbor the strongest magnetic fields in the universe, as indicated by their energetic bursts and their rapid spindowns. However, a direct measurement of their surface field strengths has not been made to date. It is also not known whether AXP outbursts result from changes in the neutron star magnetic field or crust properties. Here we report the first, spectroscopic measurement of the surface magnetic field strength of an AXP, XTE J1810-197, and solidify its magnetar nature. The field strength obtained from detailed spectral analysis and modeling is remarkably close to the value inferred from the rate of spindown of this source and remains nearly constant during numerous observations spanning over two orders of magnitude in source flux. The surface temperature, on the other hand, declines steadily and dramatically following the 2003 outburst of this source. Our findings demonstrate that heating occurs in the upper neutron star crust during an outburst and sheds light on the transient behaviour of AXPs.

  7. The Magnetar Nature and the Outburst Mechanism of a Transient Anomalous X-ray Pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guver, Tolga; Ozel, Feryal; Gogus, Ersin; Kouveliotou, Chryssa

    2007-01-01

    Anomalous X-ray Pulsars (AXPs) belong to a class of neutron stars believed to harbor the strongest magnetic fields in the universe, as indicated by their energetic bursts and their rapid spindowns. However, a direct measurement of their surface field strengths has not been made to date. It is also not known whether AXP outbursts result from changes in the neutron star magnetic field or crust properties. Here we report the first, spectroscopic measurement of the surface magnetic field strength of an AXP, XTE J1810-197, and solidify its magnetar nature. The field strength obtained from detailed spectral analysis and modeling is remarkably close to the value inferred from the rate of spindown of this source and remains nearly constant during numerous observations spanning over two orders of magnitude in source flux. The surface temperature, on the other hand, declines steadily and dramatically following the 2003 outburst of this source. Our findings demonstrate that heating occurs in the upper neutron star crust during an outburst and sheds light on the transient behaviour of AXPs.

  8. DISCOVERY OF PSR J1227−4853: A TRANSITION FROM A LOW-MASS X-RAY BINARY TO A REDBACK MILLISECOND PULSAR

    SciTech Connect

    Roy, Jayanta; Bhattacharyya, Bhaswati; Stappers, Ben; Ray, Paul S.; Wolff, Michael; Wood, Kent S.; Chengalur, Jayaram N.; Deneva, Julia; Camilo, Fernando; Johnson, Tyrel J.; Hessels, Jason W. T.; Bassa, Cees G.; Keane, Evan F.; Ferrara, Elizabeth C.; Harding, Alice K.

    2015-02-10

    XSS J12270−4859 is an X-ray binary associated with the Fermi Large Area Telescope gamma-ray source 1FGL J1227.9−4852. In 2012 December, this source underwent a transition where the X-ray and optical luminosity dropped and the spectral signatures of an accretion disk disappeared. We report the discovery of a 1.69 millisecond pulsar (MSP), PSR J1227−4853, at a dispersion measure of 43.4 pc cm{sup −3} associated with this source, using the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope (GMRT) at 607 MHz. This demonstrates that, post-transition, the system hosts an active radio MSP. This is the third system after PSR J1023+0038 and PSR J1824−2452I showing evidence of state switching between radio MSP and low-mass X-ray binary states. We report timing observations of PSR J1227−4853 with the GMRT and Parkes, which give a precise determination of the rotational and orbital parameters of the system. The companion mass measurement of 0.17–0.46 M{sub ⊙} suggests that this is a redback system. PSR J1227−4853 is eclipsed for about 40% of its orbit at 607 MHz with additional short-duration eclipses at all orbital phases. We also find that the pulsar is very energetic, with a spin-down luminosity of ∼10{sup 35} erg s{sup −1}. We report simultaneous imaging and timing observations with the GMRT, which suggests that eclipses are caused by absorption rather than dispersion smearing or scattering.

  9. Discovery of a Be/X-ray pulsar binary and associated supernova remnant in the Wing of the Small Magellanic Cloud

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hénault-Brunet, V.; Oskinova, L. M.; Guerrero, M. A.; Sun, W.; Chu, Y.-H.; Evans, C. J.; Gallagher, J. S., III; Gruendl, R. A.; Reyes-Iturbide, J.

    2012-02-01

    We report on a new Be/X-ray pulsar binary located in the Wing of the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC). The strong pulsed X-ray source was discovered with the Chandra and XMM-Newton X-ray observatories. The X-ray pulse period of 1062 s is consistently determined from both Chandra and XMM-Newton observations, revealing one of the slowest rotating X-ray pulsars known in the SMC. The optical counterpart of the X-ray source is the emission-line star 2dFS 3831. Its B0-0.5(III)e+ spectral type is determined from VLT-FLAMES and 2dF optical spectroscopy, establishing the system as a Be/X-ray binary (Be-XRB). The hard X-ray spectrum is well fitted by a power law with additional thermal and blackbody components, the latter reminiscent of persistent Be-XRBs. This system is the first evidence of a recent supernova in the low-density surroundings of NGC 602. We detect a shell nebula around 2dFS 3831 in Hα and [O III] images and conclude that it is most likely a supernova remnant. If it is linked to the supernova explosion that created this new X-ray pulsar, its kinematic age of (2-4) × 104 yr provides a constraint on the age of the pulsar.

  10. Application of the Ghosh & Lamb relation to the spin-up/down behavior in the X-ray binary pulsar 4U 1626-67

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takagi, Toshihiro; Mihara, Tatehiro; Sugizaki, Mutsumi; Makishima, Kazuo; Morii, Mikio

    2016-06-01

    We analyzed continuous Monitor of All-sky X-ray Image/Gas Slit Camera (MAXI/GSC) data of the X-ray binary pulsar 4U 1626-67 from 2009 October to 2013 September, and determined the pulse period and the pulse-period derivative for every 60-d interval by the epoch folding method. The obtained periods are consistent with those provided by the Fermi/Gamma-ray Burst Monitor pulsar project. In all the 60-d intervals, the pulsar was observed to spin up, with the spin-up rate positively correlated with the 2-20 keV flux. We applied the accretion torque model proposed by Ghosh and Lamb (1979, ApJ, 234, 296) to the MAXI/GSC data, as well as the past data including both spin-up and spin-down phases. The "Ghosh & Lamb" relation was confirmed to successfully explain the observed relation between the spin-up/down rate and the flux. By comparing the model-predicted luminosity with the observed flux, the source distance was constrained as 5-13 kpc, which is consistent with that found by Chakrabarty (1998, ApJ, 492, 342). Conversely, if the source distance is assumed, the data can constrain the mass and radius of the neutron star, because the Ghosh & Lamb model depends on these parameters. We attempted this idea, and found that an assumed distance of, e.g., 10 kpc gives a mass in the range of 1.81-1.90 solar mass, and a radius of 11.4-11.5 km, although these results are still subject to considerable systematic uncertainties, other than distance.

  11. Discovery of a 1.69 ms radio pulsar associated with the X-ray binary XSS J12270-4859

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, Paul S.; Roy, Jayanta; Bhattacharyya, Bhaswati; Deneva, Julia S.; Camilo, Fernando M.

    2014-08-01

    XSS J12270-4859 is an X-ray binary associated with the Fermi LAT gamma-ray source 1FGL J1227.9-4852 (Hill et al. 2011). In 2012 December, the source underwent a transition where the X-ray and optical luminosity dropped suddenly and spectral signatures of an accretion disk disappeared (Bassa et al. 2014). We report the discovery of a 1.69 millisecond pulsar associated with this source using the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope at 607 MHz, confirming that this system now contains an active radio millisecond pulsar. We report on radio timing observations of the source with the GMRT and the Parkes Telescope that allow determination of the orbital parameters and eclipse behavior as a function of frequency. We also describe searches for gamma-ray pulsations from the newly-visible pulsar.We thank the staff of the GMRT who have made these observations possible. GMRT is run by the National Centre for Radio Astrophysics of the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research. The Fermi LAT Collaboration acknowledges support from a number of agencies and institutes for both development and the operation of the LAT as well as scientific data analysis. These include NASA and DOE in the United States, CEA/Irfu and IN2P3/CNRS in France, ASI and INFN in Italy, MEXT, KEK, and JAXA in Japan, and the K. A. Wallenberg Foundation, the Swedish Research Council and the National Space Board in Sweden. Additional support from INAF in Italy and CNES in France for science analysis during the operations phase is also gratefully acknowledged.

  12. Long-Term Time Variability in the X-Ray Pulse Shape of the Crab Nebula Pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fazio, Giovanni G.

    2000-01-01

    This is the final performance report for our grant 'Long-Term Time Variability in the X-Ray Pulse Shape of the Crab Nebula Pulsar.' In the first year of this grant, we received the 50,000-second ROSAT (German acronym for X-ray satellite) High Resolution Images (HRI) observation of the Crab Nebula pulsar. We used the data to create a 65-ms-resolution pulse profile and compared it to a similar pulse profile obtained in 1991. No statistically significant differences were found. These results were presented at the January 1998 meeting of the American Astronomical Society. Since then, we have performed more sensitive analyses to search for potential changes in the pulse profile shape between the two data sets. Again, no significant variability was found. In order to augment this long (six-year) baseline data set, we have analyzed archival observations of the Crab Nebula pulsar with the Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer (RXTE). While these observations have shorter time baselines than the ROSAT data set, their higher signal-to-noise offers similar sensitivity to long-term variability. Again, no significant variations have been found, confirming our ROSAT results. This work was done in collaboration with Prof. Stephen Eikenberry, Cornell University. These analyses will be included in Cornell University graduate student Dae-Sik Moon's doctoral thesis.

  13. Unusual Pulsed X-Ray Emission from the Young, High Magnetic Field Pulsar PSR J1119--6127

    SciTech Connect

    Gonzalez, M E; Kaspi, V M; Camilo, F; Gaensler, B M; Pivovaroff, M J

    2005-08-05

    We present XMM-Newton observations of the radio pulsar PSR J1119-6127, which has an inferred age of 1,700 yr and surface dipole magnetic field strength of 4.1 x 10{sup 13} G. We report the first detection of pulsed X-ray emission from PSR J1119-6127. In the 0.5-2.0 keV range, the pulse profile shows a narrow peak with a very high pulsed fraction of (74 {+-} 14)%. In the 2.0-10.0 keV range, the upper limit for the pulsed fraction is 28% (99% confidence). The pulsed emission is well described by a thermal blackbody model with a temperature of T{infinity} = 2.4{sub -0.2}{sup +0.3} x 10{sup 6} K and emitting radius of 3.4{sub -0.3}{sup +1.8} km (at a distance of 8.4 kpc). Atmospheric models result in problematic estimates for the distance/emitting area. PSR J1119-6127 is now the radio pulsar with smallest characteristic age from which thermal X-ray emission has been detected. The combined temporal and spectral characteristics of this emission are unlike those of other radio pulsars detected at X-ray energies and challenge current models of thermal emission from neutron stars.

  14. Was the X-ray Afterglow of GRB 970815 Detected, or is 3EG J1621+8203 a Pulsar?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mirabal, Nestor

    2003-09-01

    One of the gamma-ray bursts localized by the RXTE ASM was followed by ASCA and ROSAT HRI pointings. While an X-ray source was detected just outside the ASM error box, it was never associated with the GRB because it was not clearly fading and because no optical afterglow was found. Years later, while attempting to identify an EGRET source whose error ellipse includes the position of GRB 970815, we made deep optical observations of the ASCA and ROSAT source position, which is still blank to a limit V > 24.4. We need a brief Chandra observation to see if the X-ray source is persistent. If not, it was almost certainly the X-ray afterglow of the optically "dark" GRB. If still present, it may be an "off-beam" pulsar counterpart of an EGRET source, and an important target for further study.

  15. Revealing the accretion disc corona in Mrk 335 with multi-epoch X-ray spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keek, L.; Ballantyne, D. R.

    2016-03-01

    Active galactic nuclei host an accretion disc with an X-ray producing corona around a supermassive black hole. In bright sources, such as the Seyfert 1 galaxy Mrk 335, reflection of the coronal emission off the accretion disc has been observed. Reflection produces spectral features such as an Fe Kα emission line, which allow for properties of the inner accretion disc and the corona to be constrained. We perform a multi-epoch spectral analysis of all XMM-Newton, Suzaku, and NuSTAR observations of Mrk 335, and we optimize our fitting procedure to unveil correlations between the Eddington ratio and the spectral parameters. We find that the disc's ionization parameter correlates strongly with the Eddington ratio: the inner disc is more strongly ionized at higher flux. The slope of the correlation is less steep than previously predicted. Furthermore, the cut-off of the power-law spectrum increases in energy with the Eddington ratio, whereas the reflection fraction exhibits a decrease. We interpret this behaviour as geometrical changes of the corona as a function of the accretion rate. Below ˜10 per cent of the Eddington limit, the compact and optically thick corona is located close to the inner disc, whereas at higher accretion rates the corona is likely optically thin and extends vertically further away from the disc surface. Furthermore, we find a soft excess that consists of two components. In addition to a contribution from reflection in low ionization states, a second component is present that traces the overall flux.

  16. Imaging X-Ray, Optical, and Infrared Observations of the Transient Anomalous X-Ray Pulsar XTE J1810-197

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gotthelf, E. V.; Halpern, J. P.; Buxton, M.; Bailyn, C.

    2004-04-01

    We report X-ray imaging, timing, and spectral studies of XTE J1810-197, a 5.54 s pulsar discovered by Ibrahim and coworkers in recent Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) observations. In a set of short exposures with the High Resolution Camera on board the Chandra X-Ray Observatory, we detect a strongly modulated signal (55%+/-4% pulsed fraction) with the expected period located at (J2000) 18h09m51s08, -19deg43'51.7", with a uncertainty radius of 0.6" (90% confidence level). Spectra obtained with XMM-Newton are well fitted by a two-component model that typically describes anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs), an absorbed blackbody plus power law with parameters kT=0.67+/-0.01 keV, Γ=3.7+/-0.2, NH=(1.05+/-0.05)×1022 cm-2, and FX(0.5-10keV)=3.98×10-11 ergs cm-2 s-1. Alternatively, a two-temperature blackbody fit is just as acceptable. The location of CXOU J180951.0-194351 is consistent with a point source seen in archival Einstein, ROSAT, and ASCA images, when its flux was nearly 2 orders of magnitude fainter, and from which no pulsations are found. The spectrum changed dramatically between the ``quiescent'' and ``active'' states; the former can be modeled as a softer blackbody. Using XMM-Newton timing data, we place an upper limit of 0.03 lt-s on any orbital motion in the period range 10 minutes-8 hr. Optical and infrared images obtained on the SMARTS 1.3 m telescope at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO) show no object in the Chandra error circle to limits V=22.5, I=21.3, J=18.9, and K=17.5. Together, these results argue that CXOU J180951.0-194351 is an isolated neutron star, one most similar to the transient AXP AX J1844.8-0256. Continuing study of XTE J1810-197 in various states of luminosity is important for understanding and possibly unifying a growing class of isolated, young neutron stars that are not powered by rotation.

  17. DETECTION OF A COOL, ACCRETION-SHOCK-GENERATED X-RAY PLASMA IN EX LUPI DURING THE 2008 OPTICAL ERUPTION

    SciTech Connect

    Teets, William K.; Weintraub, David A.; Kastner, Joel H.; Richmond, Michael; Grosso, Nicolas; Hamaguchi, Kenji

    2012-11-20

    EX Lupi is the prototype for a class of young, pre-main-sequence stars which are observed to undergo irregular, presumably accretion-generated, optical outbursts that result in a several magnitude rise of the optical flux. EX Lupi was observed to optically erupt in 2008 January, triggering Chandra ACIS Target of Opportunity observations shortly thereafter. We find very strong evidence that most of the X-ray emission in the first few months after the optical outburst is generated by accretion of circumstellar material onto the stellar photosphere. Specifically, we find a strong correlation between the decreasing optical and X-ray fluxes following the peak of the outburst in the optical, which suggests that these observed declines in both the optical and X-ray fluxes are the result of declining accretion rate. In addition, in our models of the X-ray spectrum, we find strong evidence for a {approx}0.4 keV plasma component, as expected for accretion shocks on low-mass, pre-main-sequence stars. From 2008 March through October, this cool plasma component appeared to fade as EX Lupi returned to its quiescent level in the optical, consistent with a decrease in the overall emission measure of accretion-shock-generated plasma. The overall small increase of the X-ray flux during the optical outburst of EX Lupi is similar to what was observed in previous X-ray observations of the 2005 optical outburst of the EX Lupi-type star V1118 Ori but contrasts with the large increase of the X-ray flux from the erupting young star V1647 Ori during its 2003 and 2008 optical outbursts.

  18. Detection of a Cool, Accretion-Shock-Generated X-Ray Plasma in EX Lupi During the 2008 Optical Eruption

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Teets, William K.; Weintraub, David A.; Kastner, Joel H.; Grosso, Nicholas; Hamaguchi, Kenji; Richmond, Michael

    2012-01-01

    EX Lupi is the prototype for a class of young, pre-main-sequence stars which are observed to undergo irregular, presumably accretion-generated, optical outbursts that result in a several magnitude rise of the optical flux. EX Lupi was observed to optically erupt in 2008 January, triggering Chandra ACIS Target of Opportunity observations shortly thereafter. We find very strong evidence that most of the X-ray emission in the first few months after the optical outburst is generated by accretion of circumstellar material onto the stellar photosphere. Specifically, we find a strong correlation between the decreasing optical and X-ray fluxes following the peak of the outburst in the optical, which suggests that these observed declines in both the optical and X-ray fluxes are the result of declining accretion rate. In addition, in our models of the X-ray spectrum, we find strong evidence for an approx 0.4 keV plasma component, as expected for accretion shocks on low-mass, pre-main-sequence stars. From 2008 March through October, this cool plasma component appeared to fade as EX Lupi returned to its quiescent level in the optical, consistent with a decrease in the overall emission measure of accretion-shock-generated plasma. The overall small increase of the X-ray flux during the optical outburst of EX Lupi is similar to what was observed in previous X-ray observations of the 2005 optical outburst of the EX Lupi-type star V1118 Ori but contrasts with the large increase of the X-ray flux from the erupting young star V1647 Ori during its 2003 and 2008 optical outbursts.

  19. Accretion Column Structure of Magnetic Cataclysmic Variables from X-ray Spectroscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Hoogerwerf, R; Brickhouse, N S; Mauche, C W

    2006-02-27

    Using Chandra HETG data we present light curves for individual spectral lines of Mg XI and Mg XII for EX Hydrae, an intermediate-polar type cataclysmic variable. The Mg XI light curve, folded on the white dwarf spin period, shows two spikes that are not seen in the Mg XII or broad-band light curves. Occultation of the accretion column by the body of the white dwarf would produce such spikes for an angle between the rotation axis and the accretion columns of {alpha} = 18{sup o} and a height of the Mg XI emission above the white dwarf surface of {approx}< 0.0004 white dwarf radii or {approx}< 4 km. The absence of spikes in the Mg XII and broad-band light curves could then be explained if the bulk of its emission forms at much larger height, > 0.004 white dwarf radii or > 40 km, above the white dwarf surface. The technique described in this letter demonstrates that high signal-to-noise ratio and high spectral resolution X-ray spectra can be used to map the temperature and density structure of accretion flows in magnetic cataclysmic variables. The Mg XI and Mg XII light curves are not consistent with the temperature and density structure predicted by the standard Aizu model.

  20. A test of truncation in the accretion discs of X-ray Binaries.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eckersall, A.

    2016-06-01

    The truncated-disc model is generally used to help explain the change between the soft and hard states in X-ray Binaries, where the standard accretion disc is truncated in the inner regions and replaced by a radiatively inefficient accretion flow. There is still disagreement though in the extent of this truncation, particularly in at what point truncation begins. Here we analyze XMM EPIC-pn spectra in both the soft and hard states for a number of galactic XRBs, along with RGS data and the latest absorption and emission models to get an independent fit for the ISM column densities for each source. Specifically, we assume the 'canonical' model where the luminous accretion disc extends down to the innermost stable orbit at 6r_g, and construct a spectral model accounting for thermal, reflection and Compton processes ensuring consistent geometrical properties of the models. Rather than attempting to infer the inner disc location from spectral fitting and/or reflection models, we instead attempt a direct test of whether a consistent model will fit assuming no truncation. We discuss the implications for emission models of XRBs.

  1. X-ray Light Curves and Accretion Disk Structure of EX Hydrae

    SciTech Connect

    Hoogerwerf, R; Brickhouse, N S; Mauche, C W

    2005-04-12

    We present X-ray light curves for the cataclysmic variable EX Hydrae obtained with the Chandra High Energy Transmission Grating Spectrometer and the Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer Deep Survey photometer. We confirm earlier results on the shape and amplitude of the binary light curve and discuss a new feature: the phase of the minimum in the binary light curve, associated with absorption by the bulge on the accretion disk, increases with wavelength. We discuss several scenarios that could account for this trend and conclude that, most likely, the ionization state of the bulge gas is not constant, but rather decreases with binary phase. We also conclude that photoionization of the bulge by radiation originating from the white dwarf is not the main source of ionization, but that it is heated by shocks originating from the interaction between the in-flowing material from the companion and the accretion disk. The findings in this paper provide a strong test for accretion disk models in close binary systems.

  2. XMM-Newton observation of the persistent Be/NS X-ray binary pulsar RX J0440.9+4431

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    La Palombara, N.; Sidoli, L.; Esposito, P.; Tiengo, A.; Mereghetti, S.

    2012-03-01

    Many X-ray accreting pulsars have a soft excess below 10 keV. This feature was also detected in faint sources and at low luminosity levels, suggesting that it is an ubiquitous phenomenon. For the high luminosity pulsars (LX > 1036 erg s-1), the fit to this component with thermal emission models usually provides low temperatures (kT < 0.5 keV) and large emission regions (R ≥ a few hundred km), hence it is referred to as a "soft" excess. Nevertheless, we previously found that in persistent, low-luminosity (LX ~ 1034 erg s-1) and long-period (P > 100 s) Be accreting pulsars the observed excess can be modeled with a rather hot (kTBB > 1 keV) black-body component of small area (RBB < 0.5 km), which can be interpreted as emission from the NS polar caps. In this paper, we present an analysis of an XMM-Newton observation of the Galactic Be pulsar RX J0440.9+4431, which is a poorly studied member of this class of sources. We find a best-fit period of P = 204.96 ± 0.02 s, which implies an average pulsar spin-down over the past 13 years of Ṗ ≃ 6 × 10-9 s s-1. The estimated source luminosity is LX ~ 8 × 1034 erg s-1, which is higher by a factor of less than ten compared to those obtained in the first source observations, but almost two orders of magnitude lower than those measured during the few outbursts that have been detected most recently. The source spectrum can be described with a power-law and black-body model, with kTBB = 1.34 ± 0.04 keV and RBB = 273 ± 16 m, suggesting a polar-cap origin of this component. Our results support the classification of RX J0440.9+4431 as a persistent Be/NS pulsar, and confirm that the hot black-body spectral component is a common property of this class of sources.

  3. SAX J1808.4-3658, an accreting millisecond pulsar shining in gamma rays?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Oña Wilhelmi, E.; Papitto, A.; Li, J.; Rea, N.; Torres, D. F.; Burderi, L.; Di Salvo, T.; Iaria, R.; Riggio, A.; Sanna, A.

    2016-03-01

    We report the detection of a possible gamma-ray counterpart of the accreting millisecond pulsar SAX J1808.4-3658. The analysis of ˜6 yr of data from the Large Area Telescope on board the Fermi gamma-ray Space Telescope (Fermi-LAT) within a region of 15° radius around the position of the pulsar reveals a point gamma-ray source detected at a significance of ˜6σ (test statistic TS = 32), with a position compatible with that of SAX J1808.4-3658 within the 95 per cent confidence level. The energy flux in the energy range between 0.6 and 10 GeV amounts to (2.1 ± 0.5) × 10-12 erg cm-2 s-1 and the spectrum is represented well by a power-law function with photon index 2.1 ± 0.1. We searched for significant variation of the flux at the spin frequency of the pulsar and for orbital modulation, taking into account the trials due to the uncertainties in the position, the orbital motion of the pulsar and the intrinsic evolution of the pulsar spin. No significant deviation from a constant flux at any time-scale was found, preventing a firm identification via time variability. Nonetheless, the association of the LAT source as the gamma-ray counterpart of SAX J1808.4-3658 would match the emission expected from the millisecond pulsar, if it switches on as a rotation-powered source during X-ray quiescence.

  4. X-rays and gamma-rays from accretion flows onto black holes in Seyferts and X-ray binaries

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zdziarski, Andrzej A.; Johnson, W. Neil; Poutanen, Juri; Magdziarz, Pawel; Gierlinski, Marek

    1997-01-01

    Observations and theoretical models of X-ray/gamma ray spectra of radio quiet Seyfert galaxies and Galactic black hole candidates are reviewed. The spectra from these objects share the following characteristics: an underlying power law with a high energy cutoff above 200 keV; a Compton reflection component with a Fe K alpha line, and a low energy absorption by intervening cold matter. The X-ray energy spectral index, alpha, is typically in the range between 0.8 and 1 in Seyfert spectra, and that of the hard state spectra of the black hole candidates Cygnus X-1 and GX 339-4 is typically between 0.6 and 0.8. The Compton reflection component corresponds with cold matter covering a solid angle of between 0.8pi and 2pi as seen from the X-ray source. The broadband spectra of both classes of sources are well fitted by Compton upscattering of soft photons in thermal plasma. The fits yield a thermal plasma temperature of 100 keV and the Thomson optical depth of 1. All the spectra presented are cut off before the electron rest energy 511 keV, indicating that electron/positron pair production is an important process.

  5. Detection of first harmonic of cyclotron line in Be/X-ray binary pulsar Cep X-4

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jaisawal, Gaurava K.; Naik, Sachindra

    2016-07-01

    We present broad-band spectral properties of the high mass X-ray binary pulsar Cep X-4 by using a Suzaku observation, performed during the decline phase of outburst in 2014 July. The pulsation period of the pulsar was estimated to be 66.3 s during the observation. Soft X-ray pulse profile of the pulsar was found to be double peaked which evolved into a single peaked pulse profile at higher energies. The 1-70 keV energy spectrum of the pulsar was well described with several continuum models such as partial covering Negative and Positive power-law with Exponential cut-off (NPEX), high-energy cut-off power-law and CompTT models. Additional components such as a cyclotron absorption line at ˜28 keV and two Gaussian functions for 6.4 and 6.9 keV iron emission lines were required to describe the the observed features in the spectrum. An additional absorption like feature was also detected in the pulsar spectrum at ˜45 keV. This feature was found to be model independent and was detected with >4 sigma confidence level. We identified this additional feature as the first harmonic of the fundamental cyclotron line at 28 keV. The energy ratio between first cyclotron harmonic and fundamental line was found to be lower (1.7) than the conventional factor of 2. This indicates that the line forming regions are at different heights or viewed at large angles. Phase-resolved spectroscopy was performed to understand the changes in the cyclotron line parameters with pulsar phases. The fundamental and first cyclotron harmonic line parameters show a significant variation with pulse phase. This can be explained as the effects of the viewing angle or the role of complicated magnetic field of the neutron star.

  6. X-Ray Measurement of the Spin-down of Calvera: A Radio- and Gamma-Ray-Quiet Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halpern, J. P.; Bogdanov, S.; Gotthelf, E. V.

    2013-12-01

    We measure spin-down of the 59 ms X-ray pulsar Calvera by comparing the XMM-Newton discovery data from 2009 with new Chandra timing observations taken in 2013. Its period derivative is \\dot{P}=(3.19+/- \\,0.08)\\times 10^{-15}, which corresponds to spin-down luminosity \\dot{E}=6.1\\times 10^{35} erg s-1, characteristic age \\tau _c\\equiv P/2\\dot{P}=2.9\\times 10^5 yr, and surface dipole magnetic field strength Bs = 4.4 × 1011 G. These values rule out a mildly recycled pulsar, but Calvera could be an orphaned central compact object (anti-magnetar), with a magnetic field that was initially buried by supernova debris and is now reemerging and approaching normal strength. We also performed unsuccessful searches for high-energy γ-rays from Calvera in both imaging and timing of >100 MeV Fermi photons. Even though the distance to Calvera is uncertain by an order of magnitude, an upper limit of d < 2 kpc inferred from X-ray spectra implies a γ-ray luminosity limit of <3.3 × 1032 erg s-1, which is less than that of any pulsar of comparable \\dot{E}. Calvera shares some properties with PSR J1740+1000, a young radio pulsar that we show by virtue of its lack of proper motion was born outside of the Galactic disk. As an energetic, high-Galactic-latitude pulsar, Calvera is unique in being undetected in both radio and γ-rays to faint limits, which should place interesting constraints on models for particle acceleration and beam patterns in pulsar magnetospheres.

  7. Outburst from 4U 1145-619: A Transient X-Ray Pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson, Colleen; Finger, Mark H.; Scott, Matthew

    1998-01-01

    4U 1145-619, a 293 second Be/X-ray pulsar, was discovered with Uhuru (Forman 1978, ApJS, 38, 357) and first identified as a pulsar in 1977 with Ariel V (White 1978, Nature, 274, 664). From 1991 to 1998, BATSE observed 4U 1145-619 in a series of 12 periodic outbursts, each with durations of 8-30 days. Combining these data with previously published results yielded an outburst ephemeris of T(sub out) = MJD 448871.s (+/- 0.6) +/- 186.68 (+/- 0.05)E(sub out), Where T(sub out) is the time of peak intensity and E(sub out) is the cycle number. Most outbursts occur within phases +/- 0.1 of the outburst ephemeris. Pulse frequency measurements were consistent with a long-term average frequency derivative of the first derivative of v = -3 x 10(exp -14) Hz/s. Most outbursts reached peak total fluxes of approximately equal 100 mCrab (20-50 keV) and had 20-50 keV r.m.s. pulse fractions of about 30%. (A pulse fraction of 70% was observed for one outburst). Two outbursts reached 20-50 keV peak total fluxes of 550 mCrab, but had very different 20-50 keV pulse fractions of about 30% and about 50%. Three outbursts with peak total fluxes of 120, 134, and 180 mCrab, had r.m.s. pulse fractions of about 28%, 34%, and 52%. During the brightest 3 outbursts observed with BATSE, the pulse frequency increased. Fainter outbursts observed with BATSE appeared to reach peak intensity at a later phase (relative to the ephemeris) than brighter outbursts, and were typically not detectable at the expected times of peak intensity. The pulse profile showed significant intensity and energy dependent pulse shape variations. We present histories of pulse frequency, 20-50 keV intensity, and pulse profiles.

  8. Testing propagating mass accretion rate fluctuations model PROPFLUC on black hole X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rapisarda, S.; Ingram, A.; van der Klis, M.

    2016-05-01

    Over the past 20 years, a consistent phenomenology has been established to describe the variability properties of black hole X-ray binaries. However, the physics behind the observational data is still poorly understood. The recently proposed model PROPFLUC assumes a truncated disc/hot inner flow geometry, with mass accretion rate fluctuations propagating through a precessing inner flow. These two processes give rise respectively to broad band variability and a quasi-periodic oscillation (QPO) on the precession frequency. We recently applied systematically for the first time PROPFLUC on a black hole candidate (MAXI J1543-564) in order to compare the results of phenomenological and physical modeling of the source power spectrum and to give a physical interpretation of the rising phase of the source outburst. Here we resume the results of our study on MAXI J1543-564 and we discuss future PROPFLUC implementations.

  9. Determination of Local Densities in Accreted Ice Samples Using X-Rays and Digital Imaging

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Broughton, Howard; Sims, James; Vargas, Mario

    1996-01-01

    At the NASA Lewis Research Center's Icing Research Tunnel ice shapes, similar to those which develop in-flight icing conditions, were formed on an airfoil. Under cold room conditions these experimental samples were carefully removed from the airfoil, sliced into thin sections, and x-rayed. The resulting microradiographs were developed and the film digitized using a high resolution scanner to extract fine detail in the radiographs. A procedure was devised to calibrate the scanner and to maintain repeatability during the experiment. The techniques of image acquisition and analysis provide accurate local density measurements and reveal the internal characteristics of the accreted ice with greater detail. This paper will discuss the methodology by which these samples were prepared with emphasis on the digital imaging techniques.

  10. The Origin of Warped, Precessing Accretion Disks in X-ray Binaries

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maloney, Philip R.; Begelman, Mitchell C.

    1997-01-01

    The radiation-driven warping instability discovered by Pringle holds considerable promise as the mechanism responsible for producing warped, precessing accretion disks in X-ray binaries. This instability is an inherently global mode of the disk, thereby avoiding the difficulties with earlier models for the precession. Here we follow up on earlier work to study the linear behavior of the instability in the specific context of a binary system. We treat the influence of the companion as an orbit-averaged quadrupole torque on the disk. The presence of this external torque allows the existence of solutions in which the direction of precession of the warp is retrograde with respect to disk rotation, in addition to the prograde solutions that exist in the absence of external torques.

  11. Confirming X-ray Triggered Disk Accretion With K Band Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Covey, Kevin R.; Forbrich, Jan; Gutermuth, Rob; Stauffer, John; Morales-Calderon, Maria; Rebull, Luisa; Plavchan, Peter; Megeath, Tom

    2010-08-01

    The Ceph C star forming region will be monitored in Sept. 2010 by both the Chandra X-ray Observatory and Spitzer Space Telescope. These observations will link stellar X-ray flares with mid-IR disk afterglows, indicating how coronal emission affects the temperature or structure of circumstellar disks. We propose to use the MOIRCS and TripleSpec spectrographs at the Subuaru and Palomar Observatories to obtain multi-epoch K band spectroscopy for ~80 young stellar objects (YSOs) in Ceph C. These spectra will: a) measure temperature sensitive spectral features (e.g., CO, H_2O, Na, Ca) to establish each YSO's temperature, and thus mass, and b) diagnose the strength of the Brackett Gamma (HI) emission line, providing an estimate of the central star's mass accretion rate. These spectra will provide a unique characterization of each YSOs photosphere, complementing the coronal and disk variability captured by our contemporaneous Chandra and Spitzer observations. Interpreting these data in tandem will inform our understanding the star-disk connection at young ages and advance our understanding of the physical processes governing star and planet formation.

  12. MAXI/GSC detection of the onset of the outburst from Be/X-ray binary pulsar A0535+26

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakajima, M.; Mihara, T.; Ueno, S.; Tomida, H.; Nakahira, S.; Kimura, M.; Ishikawa, M.; Nakagawa, Y. E.; Sugizaki, M.; Morii, M.; Serino, M.; Sugimoto, J.; Takagi, T.; Yoshikawa, A.; Matsuoka, M.; Kawai, N.; Yoshii, T.; Tachibana, Y.; Yoshida, A.; Sakamoto, T.; Kawakubo, Y.; Ohtsuki, H.; Tsunemi, H.; Uchida, D.; Negoro, H.; Fukushima, K.; Onodera, T.; Suzuki, K.; Namba, T.; Fujita, M.; Honda, F.; Ueda, Y.; Shidatsu, M.; Kawamuro, T.; Hori, T.; Tsuboi, Y.; Kawagoe, A.; Yamauchi, M.; Morooka, Y.; Itoh, D.; Yamaoka, K.; MAXI Team

    2015-02-01

    An onset of the X-ray outburst from the Be/X-ray binary pulsar A0535+26 was detected by the MAXI/GSC nova alert system on 2015 January 29 (MJD 57051). On the basis of the MAXI on-demand analysis, the current outburst started from MJD 57048.

  13. Relation between the X-ray and optical luminosities in binary systems with accreting nonmagnetic white dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Revnivtsev, M. G.; Filippova, E. V.; Suleimanov, V. F.

    2014-04-01

    We investigate the relation between the optical ( g-band) and X-ray (0.5-10 keV) luminosities of accreting nonmagnetic white dwarfs. According to the present-day counts of the populations of star systems in our Galaxy, these systems have the highest space density among the close binary systems with white dwarfs. We show that the dependence of the optical luminosity of accreting white dwarfs on their X-ray luminosity forms a fairly narrow one-parameter curve. The typical half-width of this curve does not exceed 0.2-0.3 dex in optical and X-ray luminosities, which is essentially consistent with the amplitude of the aperiodic flux variability for these objects. At X-ray luminosities L x ˜ 1032 erg s-1 or lower, the optical g-band luminosity of the accretion flow is shown to be related to its X-ray luminosity by a factor ˜2-3. At even lower X-ray luminosities ( L x ≲ 1030 erg s-1), the contribution from the photosphere of the white dwarf begins to dominate in the optical spectrum of the binary system and its optical brightness does not drop below M g ˜ 13-14. Using the latter fact, we show that in current and planned X-ray sky surveys, the family of accreting nonmagnetic white dwarfs can be completely identified to the distance determined by the sensitivity of an optical sky survey in this region. For the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) with a limiting sensitivity m g ˜ 22.5, this distance is ˜400-600 pc.

  14. The use of x-ray pulsar-based navigation method for interplanetary flight

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Bo; Guo, Xingcan; Yang, Yong

    2009-07-01

    As interplanetary missions are increasingly complex, the existing unique mature interplanetary navigation method mainly based on radiometric tracking techniques of Deep Space Network can not meet the rising demands of autonomous real-time navigation. This paper studied the applications for interplanetary flights of a new navigation technology under rapid development-the X-ray pulsar-based navigation for spacecraft (XPNAV), and valued its performance with a computer simulation. The XPNAV is an excellent autonomous real-time navigation method, and can provide comprehensive navigation information, including position, velocity, attitude, attitude rate and time. In the paper the fundamental principles and time transformation of the XPNAV were analyzed, and then the Delta-correction XPNAV blending the vehicles' trajectory dynamics with the pulse time-of-arrival differences at nominal and estimated spacecraft locations within an Unscented Kalman Filter (UKF) was discussed with a background mission of Mars Pathfinder during the heliocentric transferring orbit. The XPNAV has an intractable problem of integer pulse phase cycle ambiguities similar to the GPS carrier phase navigation. This article innovatively proposed the non-ambiguity assumption approach based on an analysis of the search space array method to resolve pulse phase cycle ambiguities between the nominal position and estimated position of the spacecraft. The simulation results show that the search space array method are computationally intensive and require long processing time when the position errors are large, and the non-ambiguity assumption method can solve ambiguity problem quickly and reliably. It is deemed that autonomous real-time integrated navigation system of the XPNAV blending with DSN, celestial navigation, inertial navigation and so on will be the development direction of interplanetary flight navigation system in the future.

  15. Suzaku Observation of the Anomalous X-Ray Pulsar 1E 1841-045

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morii, Mikio; Kitamoto, Shunji; Shibazaki, Noriaki; Kawai, Nobuyuki; Arimoto, Makoto; Ueno, Masaru; Kohmura, Takayoshi; Terada, Yukikatsu; Yamauchi, Shigeo; Takahashi, Hiromitsu

    2010-10-01

    We report on the results of a Suzaku observation of the anomalous X-ray pulsar (AXP) 1E 1841-045 at the center of the supernova remnant Kes 73. We confirmed that the energy-dependent spectral models obtained by previous separate observations were also satisfied over a wide energy range from 0.4 to ˜70 keV, simultaneously. Here, the models below ˜10 keV were a combination of blackbody (BB) and power-law (PL) functions, or of two BBs with different temperatures at 0.6-7.0 keV (Morii et al. 2003, PASJ, 55, L45), and that above ˜20 keV was a PL function (Kuiper et al. 2004, ApJ, 613, 1173). The combination BB + PL + PL was found to best represent the phase-averaged spectrum. Phase-resolved spectroscopy indicated the existence of two emission regions, one with a thermal and the other with a non-thermal nature. The combination BB + BB + PL was also found to represent the phase-averaged spectrum well. However, we found that this model is physically unacceptable due to an excessively large area of the emission region of the blackbody. Nonetheless, we found that the temperatures and radii of the two blackbody components showed moderate correlations in the phase-resolved spectra. The fact that the same correlations have been observed between the phase-averaged spectra of various magnetars (Nakagawa et al. 2009, PASJ, 61, 109) suggests that a self-similar function can approximate the intrinsic energy spectra of magnetars below ˜10keV.

  16. Models for galactic X-ray sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Joss, P. C.

    1980-01-01

    Attention is given to those compact galactic X-ray sources whose X-ray luminosities are considerably in excess of the solar luminosity. It is pointed out that the key breakthrough in the development of an understanding of compact galactic X-ray sources was the discovery of X-ray pulsars with the UHURU satellite. There is now overwhelming evidence that these objects are neutron stars in close binary stellar systems. The X-ray pulsations are thought to be thermal emission from the magnetic polar caps of a neutron star that is accreting matter from a companion star and whose magnetic field is misaligned with its rotation axis. Among the compact galactic X-ray sources that are not X-ray pulsars, some still show direct evidence of binary membership, such as X-ray eclipses. There is evidence that the galactic-bulge sources are, in fact, close binary stellar systems. It is concluded, that the great majority of bright galactic X-ray sources, with only a tiny handful of exceptions (such as the Crab and Vela pulsars), are likely to be binaries.

  17. Discovery of an 11-s X-Ray Pulsar in the Galactic-Plane Section of the Scorpius Constellation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugizaki, Mutsumi; Nagase, Fumiaki; Torii, Ken'ichi; Kinugasa, Kenzo; Asanuma, Tatsuhiko; Matsuzaki, Keiichi; Koyama, Katsuji; Yamauchi, Shigeo

    1997-10-01

    During a galactic-plane survey with ASCA in 1996 September, we detected a relatively bright, soft source at R.A.=17() h8() m46. s6, DEC.=-40(deg) 9'27'' (J2000), and discovered an 11-s X-ray pulsation from the source. This source has been identified with the ROSAT source 1RXS J170849.0-400910. >From a timing analysis of the source, we obtained a barycentric pulse period of P = 10.99759 +/- 0.00005 s with a broad sinusoidal shape of a pulse fraction of ~ 30%. The energy spectrum in the 0.8--10 keV region is very soft, and can be fitted by a power-law model with a photon index of 3.5 and an absorption column density of 1.8times 10(22) cm(-2) . The observed pulse-phase-averaged flux in the range 0.8--10 keV is 4.3*E(-11) erg cm(-2) s(-1) , which corresponds to 1.7*E(-10) erg cm(-2) s(-1) after correcting for soft X-ray absorption. During an observation interval of about 14 hr, neither a significant change in the pulsation period, nor a significant variation in the phase-averaged flux was detected. >From these X-ray properties, we suggest that this newly discovered X-ray pulsar might be a member of a small subgroup of ``anomalous'' X-ray pulsars with a period close to 6--9 s.

  18. Models of the hard X-ray spectrum of AM Herculis and implications for the accretion rate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Swank, J. H.; Fabian, A. C.; Ross, R. R.

    1983-01-01

    Phenomenological fits to the hard X-ray spectrum of AM Herculis left unexplained the high equivalent width (0.8 + or - 0.1 keV) of Fe K alpha emission. A purely thermal origin implies a much steeper spectrum than was observed. With Monte Carlo calculations, scattering and fluorescent line production in a cold or partially ionized accretion column of hard X-rays emitted at the base were investigated. The strength of the iron emission and the flat spectral continuum can be explained by the effects of fluorescence and absorption within the accretion column and the surface of the white dwarf on a thermal X-ray spectrum. Thomson optical depths across the column in the range 0.2 to 0.7 are acceptable. The accretion rate and gravitational power can be deduced from the optical depth across the column, if the column size is known, and, together with the observed hard X-ray and polarized light luminosities, imply a lower limit for the luminosity in the UV to soft X-ray range, for which the observations give model-dependent values. Estimates of the column size differ by a factor of 40. Small spot sizes and low luminosities would be consistent with the soft component being the expected reprocessed bremsstrahlung and cyclotron radiation, although the constraint of matching the spectrum confines one to solutions with fluxes exceeding 20% the Eddington limits.

  19. X-Ray Evidence for the Accretion Disc-Outflow Connection in 3C 111

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tombesi, Frank; Sambruna, R. M.; Reeves, J. N.; Reynolds, C. S.; Braito, V.

    2011-01-01

    We present the spectral analysis of three Suzaku X-ray Imaging Spectrometer observations of 3C III requested to monitor the predicted variability of its ultrafast outflow on approximately 7 d time-scales. We detect an ionized iron emission line in the first observation and a blueshifted absorption line in the second, when the flux is approximately 30 per cent higher. The location of the material is constrained at less than 0.006 pc from the variability. Detailed modelling supports an identification with ionized reflection off the accretion disc at approximately 20-100rg from the black hole and a highly ionized and massive ultrafast outflow with velocity approximately 0.1c, respectively. The outflow is most probably accelerated by radiation pressure, but additional magnetic thrust cannot be excluded. The measured high outflow rate and mechanical energy support the claims that disc outflows may have a significant feedback role. This work provides the first direct evidence for an accretion disc-outflow connection in a radio-loud active galactic nucleus, possibly linked also to the jet activity.

  20. X-Ray Analysis of the Proper Motion and Pulsar Wind Nebula for PSR J1741-2054

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Auchettl, Katie; Slane, Patrick; Romani, Roger W.; Posselt, Bettina; Pavlov, George G.; Kargaltsev, Oleg; Ng, C-Y.; Temim, Tea; Weisskopf, Martin C.; Bykov, Andrei; Swartz, Douglas

    2015-01-01

    We obtained six observations of PSR J1741-2054 using the Chandra ACIS-S detector totaling approx.300 ks. By registering this new epoch of observations to an archival observation taken 3.2 yr earlier using X-ray point sources in the field of view, we have measured the pulsar proper motion at micron = 109 +/- 10 mas yr(exp. -1) in a direction consistent with the symmetry axis of the observed H(alpha) nebula. We investigated the inferred past trajectory of the pulsar but find no compelling association with OB associations in which the progenitor may have originated. We confirm previous measurements of the pulsar spectrum as an absorbed power law with photon index gamma = 2.68 +/- 0.04, plus a blackbody with an emission radius of (4.5(+3.2/-2.5))d(0.38) km, for a DM-estimated distance of 0.38d(0.38) kpc and a temperature of 61.7 +/- 3.0 eV. Emission from the compact nebula is well described by an absorbed power law model with a photon index of gamma = 1.67 +/- 0.06, while the diffuse emission seen as a trail extending northeast of the pulsar shows no evidence of synchrotron cooling. We also applied image deconvolution techniques to search for small-scale structures in the immediate vicinity of the pulsar, but found no conclusive evidence for such structures.

  1. Possible detection of a cyclotron resonance scattering feature in the X-ray pulsar 4U 1909+07

    SciTech Connect

    Jaisawal, Gaurava K.; Naik, Sachindra; Paul, Biswajit

    2013-12-10

    We present timing and broad band spectral studies of the high-mass X-ray binary pulsar 4U 1909+07 using data from Suzaku observations during 2010 November 2-3. The pulse period of the pulsar is estimated to be 604.11 ± 0.14 s. Pulsations are seen in the X-ray light curve up to ∼70 keV. The pulse profile is found to be strongly energy-dependent: a complex, multi-peaked structure at low energy becomes a simple single peak at higher energy. We found that the 1-70 keV pulse-averaged continuum can be fit by the sum of a blackbody and a partial covering Negative and Positive power law with Exponential cutoff model. A weak iron fluorescence emission line at 6.4 keV was detected in the spectrum. An absorption-like feature at ∼44 keV was clearly seen in the residuals of the spectral fitting, independent of the continuum model adopted. To check the possible presence of a cyclotron resonance scattering feature (CRSF) in the spectrum, we normalized the pulsar spectrum with the spectrum of the Crab Nebula. The resulting Crab ratio also showed a clear dip centered at ∼44 keV. We performed statistical tests on the residuals of the spectral fitting and also on the Crab spectral ratio to determine the significance of the absorption-like feature and identified it as a CRSF of the pulsar. We estimated the corresponding surface magnetic field of the pulsar to be 3.8 × 10{sup 12} G.

  2. The deepest X-ray view of high-redshift galaxies: constraints on low-rate black-hole accretion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vito, F.; Gilli, R.; Vignali, C.; Brandt, W. N.; Comastri, A.; Yang, G.; Lehmer, B. D.; Luo, B.; Basu-Zych, A.; Bauer, F. E.; Cappelluti, N.; Koekemoer, A.; Mainieri, V.; Paolillo, M.; Ranalli, P.; Shemmer, O.; Trump, J.; Wang, J. X.; Xue, Y. Q.

    2016-08-01

    We exploit the 7 Ms Chandra observations in the Chandra Deep Field-South (CDF-S), the deepest X-ray survey to date, coupled with CANDELS/GOODS-S data, to measure the total X-ray emission arising from 2076 galaxies at 3.5 ≤ z < 6.5. This aim is achieved by stacking the Chandra data at the positions of optically selected galaxies, reaching effective exposure times of ≥109s. We detect significant (>3.7σ) X-ray emission from massive galaxies at z ≈ 4. We also report the detection of massive galaxies at z ≈ 5 at a 99.7% confidence level (2.7σ), the highest significance ever obtained for X-ray emission from galaxies at such high redshifts. No significant signal is detected from galaxies at even higher redshifts. The stacking results place constraints on the BHAD associated with the known high-redshift galaxy samples, as well as on the SFRD at high redshift, assuming a range of prescriptions for X-ray emission due to X- ray binaries. We find that the X-ray emission from our sample is likely dominated by processes related to star formation. Our results show that low-rate mass accretion onto SMBHs in individually X-ray-undetected galaxies is negligible, compared with the BHAD measured for samples of X-ray detected AGN, for cosmic SMBH mass assembly at high redshift. We also place, for the first time, constraints on the faint-end of the AGN X-ray luminosity function (logLX ˜ 42) at z > 4, with evidence for fairly flat slopes. The implications of all of these findings are discussed in the context of the evolution of the AGN population at high redshift.

  3. X-ray and ultraviolet radiation from accreting white dwarfs. IV - Two-temperature treatment with electron thermal conduction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Imamura, J. N.; Durisen, R. H.; Lamb, D. Q.; Weast, G. J.

    1987-01-01

    Results are reported from two-temperature calculations of the structures and X-ray spectra of radiation shocks generated by accretion onto nonmagnetic white dwarfs. The approach was necessitated by the domination of bremsstrahlung in the emission region by Compton cooling. Features of the shock model, which includes steady, spherical infall of fully ionized plasma and dominance of the stand-off shock by collisional processes, are summarized. A maximum hard X-ray temperature of about 50 keV and a maximum hard X-ray luminosity of 2 x 10 to the 36th ergs/sec were obtained. The results prove that the bulk of accretion energy cannot be transported to the star by electron thermal conduction, provided that bremsstrahlung cooling is dominant over cyclotron cooling.

  4. Ain't no Crab, PWN Got a Brand New Bag: Correlated Radio and X-ray Structures in Pulsar Wind Nebulae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roberts, M. S. E.; Lyutikov, M.; Gaensler, B. M.; Brogan, C. L.; Tam, C. R.; Romani, R. W.

    2005-04-01

    The traditional view of radio pulsar wind nebulae (PWN), encouraged by the Crab nebula's X-ray and radio morphologies, is that they are a result of the integrated history of their pulsars' wind. The radio emission should therefore be largely unaffected by recent pulsar activity, and hence minimally correlated with structures in the X-ray nebulae. Observations of several PWN, both stationary and rapidly moving, now show clear morphological relationships between structures in the radio and X-ray with radio intensity variations on the order of unity. We present high-resolution X-ray and radio images of several PWN of both types and discuss the morphological relationships between the two wavebands.

  5. An optical synchrotron nebula around the X-ray pulsar 0540 693 in the Large Magellanic Cloud

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chanan, G. A.; Helfand, D. J.; Reynolds, S. P.

    1984-12-01

    The discovery of extended optical continuum emission around the recently discovered 50 ms X-ray pulsar in the supernova remnant 0540 - 693 is reported. Exposures in blue and red broad-band filters made with the CTIO 4 m telescope and prime focus CCD show a center-brightened but clearly extended nebula about 4 arcsec in diameter (FWHM), while an image in an (O III) filter shows an 8 arcsec diameter shell (as reported earlier) which encloses the continuum source. The extinction-correction magnitudes B = 17.5 and I = 16.4 both correspond to flux densities which lie directly on the extrapolation of the observed X-ray power-law spectrum, suggesting that the emission from 10 to the 14.5 Hz to 10 to the 18th Hz is synchrotron radiation from a single population of particles. Line emission is shown to be only a small contaminant in the broad-band images. Thus the 0540 - 693 system is apparently a very close analog of the Crab Nebula. Any point source component in the former nebula must have B greater than 20; the Crab pulsar at this distance would have B approximately 23. The implications of the observations for the energetics of the pulsar/nebula system are discussed.

  6. THE CLOSE T TAURI BINARY SYSTEM V4046 Sgr: ROTATIONALLY MODULATED X-RAY EMISSION FROM ACCRETION SHOCKS

    SciTech Connect

    Argiroffi, C.; Maggio, A.; Damiani, F.; Montmerle, T.; Huenemoerder, D. P.; Alecian, E.; Audard, M.; Bouvier, J.; Gregory, S. G.; Guedel, M.; Hussain, G. A. J.; Kastner, J. H.; Sacco, G. G.

    2012-06-20

    We report initial results from a quasi-simultaneous X-ray/optical observing campaign targeting V4046 Sgr, a close, synchronous-rotating classical T Tauri star (CTTS) binary in which both components are actively accreting. V4046 Sgr is a strong X-ray source, with the X-rays mainly arising from high-density (n{sub e}{approx} 10{sup 11}-10{sup 12} cm{sup -3}) plasma at temperatures of 3-4 MK. Our multi-wavelength campaign aims to simultaneously constrain the properties of this X-ray-emitting plasma, the large-scale magnetic field, and the accretion geometry. In this paper, we present key results obtained via time-resolved X-ray-grating spectra, gathered in a 360 ks XMM-Newton observation that covered 2.2 system rotations. We find that the emission lines produced by this high-density plasma display periodic flux variations with a measured period, 1.22 {+-} 0.01 d, that is precisely half that of the binary star system (2.42 d). The observed rotational modulation can be explained assuming that the high-density plasma occupies small portions of the stellar surfaces, corotating with the stars, and that the high-density plasma is not azimuthally symmetrically distributed with respect to the rotational axis of each star. These results strongly support models in which high-density, X-ray-emitting CTTS plasma is material heated in accretion shocks, located at the base of accretion flows tied to the system by magnetic field lines.

  7. 1 Hz Flaring in the Accreting Millisecond Pulsar NGC 6440 X-2: Disk Trapping and Accretion Cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patruno, Alessandro; D'Angelo, Caroline

    2013-07-01

    The dynamics of the plasma in the inner regions of an accretion disk around accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars (AMXPs) is controlled by the magnetic field of the neutron star. The interaction between an accretion disk and a strong magnetic field is not well understood, particularly at low accretion rates (the so-called propeller regime). This is due in part to the lack of clear observational diagnostics to constrain the physics of the disk-field interaction. Here, we associate the strong ~1 Hz modulation seen in the AMXP NGC 6440 X-2 with an instability that arises when the inner edge of the accretion disk is close to the corotation radius (where the stellar rotation rate matches the Keplerian speed in the disk). A similar modulation has previously been observed in another AMXP (SAX J1808.4-3658) and we suggest that the two phenomena are related and that this may be a common phenomenon among other magnetized systems. Detailed comparisons with theoretical models suggest that when the instability is observed, the interaction region between the disk and the field is very narrow—of the order of 1 km. Modeling further suggests that there is a transition region (~1-10 km) around the corotation radius where the disk-field torque changes sign from spin-up to spin-down. This is the first time that a direct observational constraint has been placed on the width of the disk-magnetosphere interaction region, in the frame of the trapped-disk instability model.

  8. X-ray diagnostics of chemical composition of the accretion disc and donor star in ultra-compact X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koliopanos, Filippos; Gilfanov, Marat; Bildsten, Lars

    2013-06-01

    Non-solar composition of the donor star in ultra-compact X-ray binaries (UCXBs) may have a pronounced effect on the fluorescent lines appearing in their spectra due to reprocessing of primary radiation by the accretion disc and the white dwarf surface. We show that the most dramatic and easily observable consequence of the anomalous C/O abundance is the significant, by more than an order of magnitude, attenuation of the Kα line of iron. It is caused by screening of the presence of iron by oxygen - in the C/O-dominated material the main interaction process for an E ≈ 7 keV photon is absorption by oxygen rather than by iron, contrary to the solar composition case. Ionization of oxygen at high mass accretion rates adds a luminosity dependence to this behaviour - the iron line is significantly suppressed only at low luminosity, log (LX) ≲ 37-37.5, and should recover its nominal strength at higher luminosity. The increase of the equivalent width of the Kα lines of carbon and oxygen, on the other hand, saturates at rather moderate values. Screening by He is less important, due to its low ionization threshold and because in the accretion disc it is mostly ionized. Consequently, in the case of the He-rich donor, the iron line strength remains close to its nominal value, determined by the iron abundance in the accretion disc. This opens the possibility of constraining the nature of donor stars in UCXBs by means of X-ray spectroscopy with moderate energy resolution.

  9. PATCHY ACCRETION DISKS IN ULTRA-LUMINOUS X-RAY SOURCES

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, J. M.; Bachetti, M.; Barret, D.; Webb, N. A.; Harrison, F. A.; Walton, D. J.; Rana, V.; Fabian, A. C.

    2014-04-10

    The X-ray spectra of the most extreme ultra-luminous X-ray sources—those with L ≥ 10{sup 40} erg s{sup –1}—remain something of a mystery. Spectral roll-over in the 5-10 keV band was originally detected in the deepest XMM-Newton observations of the brightest sources; this is confirmed in subsequent NuSTAR spectra. This emission can be modeled via Comptonization, but with low electron temperatures (kT{sub e} ≅ 2 keV) and high optical depths (τ ≅ 10) that pose numerous difficulties. Moreover, evidence of cooler thermal emission that can be fit with thin disk models persists, even in fits to joint XMM-Newton and NuSTAR observations. Using NGC 1313 X-1 as a test case, we show that a patchy disk with a multiple temperature profile may provide an excellent description of such spectra. In principle, a number of patches within a cool disk might emit over a range of temperatures, but the data only require a two-temperature profile plus standard Comptonization, or three distinct blackbody components. A mechanism such as the photon bubble instability may naturally give rise to a patchy disk profile, and could give rise to super-Eddington luminosities. It is possible, then, that a patchy disk (rather than a disk with a standard single-temperature profile) might be a hallmark of accretion disks close to or above the Eddington limit. We discuss further tests of this picture and potential implications for sources such as narrow-line Seyfert-1 galaxies and other low-mass active galactic nuclei.

  10. A Chandra look at the X-ray faint millisecond pulsars in the globular cluster NGC 6752

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forestell, L. M.; Heinke, C. O.; Cohn, H. N.; Lugger, P. M.; Sivakoff, G. R.; Bogdanov, S.; Cool, A. M.; Anderson, J.

    2014-06-01

    We combine new and archival Chandra observations of the globular cluster NGC 6752 to create a deeper X-ray source list, and study the faint radio millisecond pulsars (MSPs) of this cluster. We detect four of the five MSPs in NGC 6752, and present evidence for emission from the fifth. The X-rays from these MSPs are consistent with thermal emission from the neutron star surfaces, with significantly higher fitted blackbody temperatures than other globular cluster MSPs (though we cannot rule out contamination by non-thermal emission or other X-ray sources). NGC 6752 E is one of the lowest-LX MSPs known, with LX(0.3-8 keV) = 1.0^{+0.9}_{-0.5}× 10^{30} erg s-1. We check for optical counterparts of the three isolated MSPs in the core using new Hubble Space Telescope Advanced Camera for Surveys images, finding no plausible counterparts, which is consistent with their lack of binary companions. We compile measurements of LX and spin-down power for radio MSPs from the literature, including errors where feasible. We find no evidence that isolated MSPs have lower LX than MSPs in binary systems, omitting binary MSPs showing emission from intrabinary wind shocks. We find weak evidence for an inverse correlation between the estimated temperature of the MSP X-rays and the known MSP spin period, consistent with the predicted shrinking of the MSP polar cap size with increasing spin period.

  11. The slow X-ray pulsar SXP 1062 and associated supernova remnant in the Wing of the Small Magellanic Cloud

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oskinova, L. M.; Guerrero, M. A.; Hénault-Brunet, V.; Sun, W.; Chu, Y.-H.; Evans, C.; Gallagher, J. S.; Gruendl, R. A.; Reyes-Iturbide, J.

    2013-03-01

    SXP 1062 is an exceptional case of a young neutron star in a wind-fed high-mass X-ray binary associated with a supernova remnant. A unique combination of measured spin period, its derivative, luminosity and young age makes this source a key probe for the physics of accretion and neutron star evolution. Theoretical models proposed to explain the properties of SXP 1062 shall be tested with new data.

  12. A Compact X-Ray Source in the Radio Pulsar-wind Nebula G141.2+5.0

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reynolds, Stephen P.; Borkowski, Kazimierz J.

    2016-01-01

    We report the results of a 50 ks Chandra observation of the recently discovered radio object G141.2+5.0, presumed to be a pulsar-wind nebula. We find a moderately bright unresolved X-ray source that we designate CXOU J033712.8 615302 coincident with the central peak radio emission. An absorbed power-law fit to the 241 counts describes the data well, with absorbing column {N}H=6.7(4.0,9.7)× {10}21 cm-2 and photon index {{Γ }}=1.8(1.4,2.2). For a distance of 4 kpc, the unabsorbed luminosity between 0.5 and 8 keV is {1.7}-0.3+0.4× {10}32 erg s-1 (90% confidence intervals). Both LX and Γ are quite typical of pulsars in PWNe. No extended emission is seen; we estimate a conservative 3σ upper limit to the surface brightness of any X-ray PWN near the point source to be 3× {10}-17 erg cm-2 s-1 arcsec-2 between 0.5 and 8 keV, assuming the same spectrum as the point source; for a nebula of diameter 13\\prime\\prime , the flux limit is 6% of the flux of the point source. The steep radio spectrum of the PWN (α ˜ -0.7), if continued to the X-ray without a break, predicts {L}{{X}} {{(nebula)}}˜ 1× {10}33 erg s-1, so additional spectral steepening between radio and X-rays is required, as is true of all known PWNe. The high Galactic latitude gives a z-distance of 350 pc above the Galactic plane, quite unusual for a Population I object.

  13. The Crab Pulsar Observed by RXTE: Monitoring the X-Ray to Radio Delay for 16 Years

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rots, Arnold; Jahoda, Keith

    2012-01-01

    In 2004 we published the results of monitoring the Crab Pulsar by RXTE. At that time we determined that the primary pulse of the pulsar at X-ray energies precedes its radio counterpart by about 0.01 period in phase or approximately 330 micro seconds. However, we could not establish unambiguously whether the delay is in phase or due to a difference in pathlength. At this time we have twice the time baseline we had in 2004 and we present the same analysis, but now over a period of 16 years, which will represent almost the full mission and the best that will be available from RXTE. The full dataset shows that the phase delay has been decreasing faster than the pulse frequency over the 16 year baseline and that there are variations in the delay on a variety of timescales.

  14. Black hole accretion disks - Electrodynamic coupling of accretion-disk coronae and the partitioning of soft and hard X-ray emission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuperus, M.; Ionson, J. A.

    1985-01-01

    It is demonstrated that the observed large ratio of hard to soft X-ray emission and the bimodel behavior of black hole accreting X-ray sources such as Cygnus X-1 can be described in terms of a magnetically structured accretion disk corona which is electrodynamically coupled to the disk turbulent motions while the disk is thermodynamically coupled to the corona as described by a feedback parameter delta. The observed ratio of hard to soft X-ray emission is independent of the disk thickness, and weakly dependent of the disk parameter alpha relating the disk viscous stresses to the total pressure. Observed values of the luminosity ratio point towards strong differences of the feedback of the low state compared to the high state, in the sense that low state means small feedback (delta less than 0.2) and high state means strong feedback delta of about 0.5.

  15. Improved reflection models of black hole accretion disks: Treating the angular distribution of X-rays

    SciTech Connect

    García, J.; Steiner, J. F.; McClintock, J. E.; Brenneman, L. E-mail: jsteiner@head.cfa.harvard.edu E-mail: lbrenneman@cfa.harvard.edu; and others

    2014-02-20

    X-ray reflection models are used to constrain the properties of the accretion disk, such as the degree of ionization of the gas and the elemental abundances. In combination with general relativistic ray tracing codes, additional parameters like the spin of the black hole and the inclination to the system can be determined. However, current reflection models used for such studies only provide angle-averaged solutions for the flux reflected at the surface of the disk. Moreover, the emission angle of the photons changes over the disk due to relativistic light bending. To overcome this simplification, we have constructed an angle-dependent reflection model with the XILLVER code and self-consistently connected it with the relativistic blurring code RELLINE. The new model, relxill, calculates the proper emission angle of the radiation at each point on the accretion disk and then takes the corresponding reflection spectrum into account. We show that the reflected spectra from illuminated disks follow a limb-brightening law highly dependent on the ionization of disk and yet different from the commonly assumed form I∝ln (1 + 1/μ). A detailed comparison with the angle-averaged model is carried out in order to determine the bias in the parameters obtained by fitting a typical relativistic reflection spectrum. These simulations reveal that although the spin and inclination are mildly affected, the Fe abundance can be overestimated by up to a factor of two when derived from angle-averaged models. The fit of the new model to the Suzaku observation of the Seyfert galaxy Ark 120 clearly shows a significant improvement in the constraint of the physical parameters, in particular by enhancing the accuracy in the inclination angle and the spin determinations.

  16. A relativistically smeared spectrum in the neutron star X-ray binary 4U 1705-44: looking at the inner accretion disc with X-ray spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    di Salvo, T.; D'Aí, A.; Iaria, R.; Burderi, L.; Dovčiak, M.; Karas, V.; Matt, G.; Papitto, A.; Piraino, S.; Riggio, A.; Robba, N. R.; Santangelo, A.

    2009-10-01

    Iron emission lines at 6.4-6.97 keV, identified with fluorescent Kα transitions, are among the strongest discrete features in the X-ray band. These are therefore one of the most powerful probes to infer the properties of the plasma in the innermost part of the accretion disc around a compact object. In this paper, we present a recent XMM-Newton observation of the X-ray burster 4U 1705-44, where we clearly detect a relativistically smeared iron line at about 6.7 keV, testifying with high statistical significance that the line profile is distorted by high-velocity motion in the accretion disc. As expected from disc reflection models, we also find a significant absorption edge at about 8.3 keV; this feature appears to be smeared, and is compatible with being produced in the same region where the iron line is produced. From the line profile, we derive the physical parameters of the inner accretion disc with large precision. The line is identified with the Kα transition of highly ionized iron, FeXXV, the inner disc radius is Rin = 14 +/- 2 Rg (where Rg is the Gravitational radius, GM/c2), the emissivity dependence from the disc radius is r-2.27+/-0.08, the inclination angle with respect to the line of sight is i = 39° +/- 1°. Finally, the XMM-Newton spectrum shows evidences of other low-energy emission lines, which again appear broad and their profiles are compatible with being produced in the same region where the iron line is produced.

  17. Modelling aperiodic X-ray variability in black hole binaries as propagating mass accretion rate fluctuations: A short review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ingram, A. R.

    2016-05-01

    Black hole binary systems can emit very bright and rapidly varying X-ray signals when material from the companion accretes onto the black hole, liberating huge amounts of gravitational potential energy. Central to this process of accretion is turbulence. In the propagating mass accretion rate fluctuations model, turbulence is generated throughout the inner accretion flow, causing fluctuations in the accretion rate. Fluctuations from the outer regions propagate towards the black hole, modulating the fluctuations generated in the inner regions. Here, I present the theoretical motivation behind this picture before reviewing the array of statistical variability properties observed in the light curves of black hole binaries that are naturally explained by the model. I also discuss the remaining challenges for the model, both in terms of comparison to data and in terms of including more sophisticated theoretical considerations.

  18. ACCRETION TORQUES AND MOTION OF THE HOT SPOT ON THE ACCRETING MILLISECOND PULSAR XTE J1807-294

    SciTech Connect

    Patruno, Alessandro; Wijnands, R.; Van der Klis, Michiel; Hartman, Jacob M.; Chakrabarty, Deepto

    2010-07-10

    We present a coherent timing analysis of the 2003 outburst of the accreting millisecond pulsar (AMXP) XTE J1807-294. We find a 95% confidence interval for the pulse frequency derivative of (+0.7, + 4.7) x 10{sup -14} Hz s{sup -1} and (-0.6, + 3.8) x 10{sup -14} Hz s{sup -1} for the fundamental and second harmonics, respectively. The sinusoidal fractional amplitudes of the pulsations are the highest observed among AMXPs and can reach values of up to 27% (2.5-30 keV). The pulse arrival time residuals of the fundamental frequency follow a linear anti-correlation with the fractional amplitudes that suggests hot spot motion both in longitude and latitude over the surface of the neutron star. An anti-correlation between residuals and X-ray flux suggests an influence of the accretion rate on pulse phase and casts doubts on the interpretation of pulse frequency derivatives in terms of changes of spin rates and torques on the neutron star.

  19. Thermonuclear processes and accretion onto neutron star envelopes - X-ray burst and transient sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Starrfield, S.; Kenyon, S.; Truran, J. W.; Sparks, W. M.

    1982-01-01

    A Lagrangian, fully implicit, one-dimensional hydrodynamic computer code is used to investigate the evolution of thermonuclear runaways in the thick accreted hydrogen-rich envelopes of 1.0-solar-mass neutron stars having radii of 10 km and 20 km. The simulations produce outbursts that range in time scale from about 2000 seconds to more than a day. For the 10-km study, the peak effective temperature is 3.3 x 10 to the 7th K, and the peak luminosity is 2 x 10 to the 5th solar luminosities. The 20-km neutron star produces a peak effective temperature and luminosity of 5.3 x 10 to the 6th K and 5.9 x 10 to the 2nd solar luminosities. Also investigated are the effects of changes in the rates of the O-14(alpha, proton) and O-15(alpha, gamma) reactions on the evolution. Hydrodynamic expansion on the 10-km neutron star produces a precursor lasting about 10 to the -6th sec. The evolution of a gas cloud impacting the surface of a 20-km, 1-solar-mass neutron star is studied in an attempt to simulate the magnetospheric gate model of the X-ray burst sources.

  20. DISCOVERY OF A FAINT X-RAY COUNTERPART AND A PARSEC-LONG X-RAY TAIL FOR THE MIDDLE-AGED, {gamma}-RAY-ONLY PULSAR PSR J0357+3205

    SciTech Connect

    De Luca, A.; Bignami, G. F.; Marelli, M.; Caraveo, P. A.; Mignani, R. P.; Hummel, W.; Collins, S.; Shearer, A.; Parkinson, P. M. Saz; Belfiore, A.

    2011-06-01

    The Large Area Telescope (LAT) on board the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope opened a new era for pulsar astronomy, detecting {gamma}-ray pulsations from more than 60 pulsars, {approx}40% of which are not seen at radio wavelengths. One of the most interesting sources discovered by LAT is PSR J0357+3205, a radio-quiet, middle-aged ({tau}{sub C} {approx} 0.5 Myr) pulsar standing out for its very low spin-down luminosity (E-dot{sub rot}{approx}6x10{sup 33} erg s{sup -1}), indeed the lowest among non-recycled {gamma}-ray pulsars. A deep X-ray observation with Chandra (0.5-10 keV), coupled with sensitive optical/infrared ground-based images of the field, allowed us to identify PSR J0357+3205 as a faint source with a soft spectrum, consistent with a purely non-thermal emission (photon index {Gamma} = 2.53 {+-} 0.25). The absorbing column (N{sub H} = 8 {+-} 4 x 10{sup 20} cm{sup -2}) is consistent with a distance of a few hundred parsecs. Moreover, the Chandra data unveiled a huge (9 arcmin long) extended feature apparently protruding from the pulsar. Its non-thermal X-ray spectrum points to synchrotron emission from energetic particles from the pulsar wind, possibly similar to other elongated X-ray tails associated with rotation-powered pulsars and explained as bow-shock pulsar wind nebulae (PWNe). However, energetic arguments as well as the peculiar morphology of the diffuse feature associated with PSR J0357+3205 make the bow-shock PWN interpretation rather challenging.

  1. X-ray jets from B2224+65: A Middle-aged Pulsar's New Trick

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Q. Daniel

    2014-11-01

    B2224+65 is well known to have a very high proper motion and to be associated with the ``Guitar Nebula'' in the opposite direction of the motion. A jet-like X-ray feature, however, is offset from its proper motion direction by 118 degree. Furthermore, the X-ray luminosity and morphology of the feature changed significantly between three Chandra observations. We are carrying out a detailed measurements of the X-ray spectral variation with time and across the feature and are critically testing scenarios proposed to explain this enigmatic system. The study will also have strong implications for understanding somewhat similar linear nonthermal X-ray-emitting features that have been identified in the central 100 pc region of the Galaxy.

  2. A Future NICER Observation of Pulsar J0437-4715 from the Perspective of the X-ray Concentators’ Performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balsamo, Erin; Gendreau, Keith; Arzoumanian, Zaven

    2014-08-01

    While on-board the International Space Station, the Neutron Star Interior Composition ExploreR (NICER) will perform high accuracy X-ray timing measurements of neutron stars. The X-ray Timing Instrument (XTI), consisting of 56, high effective area, X-ray Concentrators (XRCs) co-aligned with silicon drift detectors, provides absolute GPS-based photon time-tagging. This allows for high-quality lightcurves from long exposures compiled over many brief observation segments. Through energy-dependent lightcurve analysis of millisecond pulsar observations we can infer neutron star radii within 5% and further constrain the equations of state. One of NICER’s key targets to perform a radius measurement is PSR J0437-4715, the closest known MSP. However, the observation of this pulsar will not be as straight forward as pointing the XTI in the pulsar’s direction. One of the main reasons the XRCs have such a high effective area is the same reason this observation poses a unique challenge, concentrators cannot discriminate photons from different sources. With the XRCs’ field of view of 6 arcminutes and a bright AGN (RX J0437.4-4711) located less than 4.3’ from PSR J0437-4715, we must minimize the AGN photon contribution in order to minimize the uncertainty in the radius measurement. Even though the AGN is approximately one order of magnitude brighter than the pulsar, the XRCs’ effective area depends greatly on the photons’ incident angles. The fact that the efficiency of a source observed off-axis is much lower than one observed on-axis can be used to our advantage. Using a comprehensive analysis and thorough understanding of the XRC performance from X-ray testing at NASA Goddard’s beamlines and NICER’s raytrace code, I am developing a method for observing PSR J0437-4715. The simulations for this work include considering NICER’s pointing budget and the timing and spectral properties of these sources from previous research found in the literature.

  3. Superorbital Modulation and Orbital Parameters of the Eclipsing High-Mass X-ray Pulsar IGR J16493-4348

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pearlman, Aaron B.; Corbet, R.; Pottschmidt, K.

    2013-01-01

    Previous infrared studies of the X-ray pulsar IGR J16493-4348 classified the system as a supergiant high-mass X-ray binary (HMXB). A ~6.78 d orbital period was discovered from Swift Burst Alert Telescope (BAT) and Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) Proportional Counter Array (PCA) Galactic Bulge scan observations. A coherent signal at ~20.07 d was also found using the PCA and BAT instruments, suggestive of superorbital behavior within the system. Using well-sampled PCA archival pointed data (2.5-25 keV) spanning 9.5 d, we find strong evidence for a pulse period at ~1093 s from pulse arrival time analysis and the power spectrum of the light curve after removal of low frequency noise. We present an eclipse model for the folded PCA scan and BAT 66-month snapshot light curves, which constrains the system's behavior during orbital transitions. Pulse arrival times are derived using the PCA pointed light curve, and circular and eccentric orbital solutions are provided. A 14.0 ± 2.3 M⊙ mass function is determined, which further confirms the designation of IGR J16493-4348 as a supergiant HMXB.

  4. ON THE SPIN-DOWN AND MAGNETIC FIELD OF THE X-RAY PULSAR 1E 1207.4-5209

    SciTech Connect

    Halpern, J. P.; Gotthelf, E. V. E-mail: eric@astro.columbia.edu

    2011-06-01

    We analyze all of the archival X-ray timing data from the years 2000-2008 on the weakly magnetized central compact object (CCO) pulsar 1E 1207.4-5209 in an attempt to measure its dipole magnetic field strength via spin-down. because most of these observations were not planned for the purpose of phase-coherent timing, the resulting ephemeris is not unique, but is restricted to two comparably good timing solutions that correspond to B{sub s} = 9.9 x 10{sup 10} G or 2.4 x 10{sup 11} G, respectively, assuming dipole spin-down. One of these should be the correct value and the other one an alias. There are no spinning-up solutions. The smaller value of B{sub s} is close to the surface field of 8 x 10{sup 10} G that is measured independently from the unique absorption lines in the X-ray spectrum of 1E 1207.4-5209, assuming that the lowest-energy line at 0.7 keV is the electron-cyclotron fundamental. We suggest that 1E 1207.4-5209 has the strongest magnetic field among CCOs, which would account for the unique presence of its cyclotron absorption spectrum, while other CCOs likely have even weaker fields for which the cyclotron fundamental falls below the observable soft X-ray band.

  5. On the possibility of improving the orbits of satellites based on observations of isolated X-ray pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Revnivtsev, M. G.; Gadzhily, O. E.; Lutovinov, A. A.; Molkov, S. V.; Arefiev, V. A.; Pavlinsky, M. N.; Tuchin, A. G.

    2015-08-01

    At present, there is a great worldwide interest in the development of technologies that allow information about the X-ray emission from pulsating cosmic sources to be used to obtain navigation solutions for a spacecraft in deep space. In this paper, we illustrate the technique for determining the spatial position of a spacecraft based on the already existing data from the RXTE X-ray space observatory. We show that the spacecraft position toward the Crab pulsar can be determined using an X-ray detector with an effective area of about 0.6 m2 in the energy range 3-15 keV with an accuracy up to 730 m in a signal integration time of ~1000 s. Extending the energy range to 1 keV (the efficiency of the RXTE/PCA spectrometer decreases dramatically at energies below 3 keV) will allow a spacecraft position accuracy of ~400-450 m to be achieved at the same effective area and up to 300-350 m when using detectors with an effective area of ~1 m2 in the energy range 1-10 keV.

  6. X-ray surveys - Weighting the dark matter haloes of X-ray AGN: towards a physical description of the accretion history of the Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Georgakakis, Antonis; Mountrichas, G.; Fanidakis, N.; Finoguenov, A.; Aegis Collaboration

    2012-09-01

    The masses of the dark matter haloes in which AGN live is powerful diagnostic of the conditions under which supermassive black holes form and evolve across cosmic time. A new clustering estimation method will be presented which requires spectroscopy only for the AGN and uses photometric redshift probability density functions for galaxies to determine the projected real-space AGN/galaxy cross-correlation function. Our method is superior to traditional AGN clustering estimators (e.g. auto-correlation function) because (i) random errors are significantly suppressed when counting AGN/galaxy pairs, (ii) the impact of sample variance is minimized, and (iii) the requirements for spectroscopy are minimal; only spectroscopic redshift measurements for the AGN are needed. This method is applied to the combined AEGIS, COSMOS and ECDFS fields to infer the bias and dark matter halo mass of moderate luminosity (Lx~10^43 erg/s/cm^2) X-ray AGN at z~1 (total of 400). Predictions from the GALFORM semi-analytic model will be compared to the observations to show that a combination of hot and cold-gas accretion (the latter triggered by disk instabilities in spirals rather than mergers) reproduce well the clustering properties of X-ray AGN over a range of redshifts and luminosities.

  7. NEUTRINO-COOLED ACCRETION MODEL WITH MAGNETIC COUPLING FOR X-RAY FLARES IN GAMMA-RAY BURSTS

    SciTech Connect

    Luo Yang; Gu Weimin; Liu Tong; Lu Jufu

    2013-08-20

    The neutrino-cooled accretion disk, which was proposed to work as the central engine of gamma-ray bursts, encounters difficulty in interpreting the X-ray flares after the prompt gamma-ray emission. In this paper, the magnetic coupling (MC) between the inner disk and the central black hole (BH) is taken into consideration. For mass accretion rates around 0.001 {approx} 0.1 M{sub Sun} s{sup -1}, our results show that the luminosity of neutrino annihilation can be significantly enhanced due to the coupling effects. As a consequence, after the gamma-ray emission, a remnant disk with mass M{sub disk} {approx}< 0.5 M{sub Sun} may power most of the observed X-ray flares with the rest frame duration less than 100 s. In addition, a comparison between the MC process and the Blandford-Znajek mechanism is shown on the extraction of BH rotational energy.

  8. Torque Reversal and Spin-Down of the Accretion-Powered Pulsar 4U 1626-67

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chakrabarty, Deepto L.; Bildsten, L.; Grunsfeld, J. M.; Koh, D. T.; Prince, T. A.; Vaughan, B. A.; Finger, M. H.; Scott, D. M.; Wilson, R. B.

    1997-01-01

    Over 5 yr of hard X-ray (20-60 keV) monitoring of the 7.66 s accretion-powered pulsar 4U 1626-67 with the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory/BATSE large-area detectors has revealed that the neutron star is now steadily spinning down, in marked contrast to the steady spin-up and spin-down torques differ by only 15% with the neutron star spin changing on a timescale |v/v| approximately equals 5000 yr in both states. The current spin-down rate is itself decreasing on a timescale |v/v| approximately equals 26 yr. The long-term timing history shows small-amplitude variations on a 4000 day timescale, which are probably due to variations in the mass transfer rate. The pulsed 20-60 keV emission from 4U 1626-67 is well-fitted by a power-law spectrum with photon index gamma = 4.9 and a typical pulsed intensity of 1.5 x 10(exp -10) ergs cm (exp -2)s(exp -1). The low count rates with BATSE prohibited us from constraining the reported 42 minute binary orbit, but we can rule out long-period orbits in the range 2 days < or = P(orb) < or = 900 days. We compare the long-term torque behavior of 4U 1626-67 to other disk-fed accreting pulsars and discuss the implications of our results for the various theories of magnetic accretion torques. The abrupt change in the sign of the torque is difficult to reconcile with the extremely smooth spin-down now observed. The strength of the torque noise in 4U 1626-67, approximately 10(exp -22) Hz(exp 2)s(exp -2) Hz(exp -1), is the smallest ever measured for an accreting X-ray pulsar, and it is comparable to the timing noise seen in young radio pulsars. We close by pointing out that the core temperature and external torque (the two parameters potentially relevant to internal sources of timing noise) of an accreting neutron star are also comparable to those of young radio pulsars.

  9. Superorbital periodic modulation in wind-accretion high-mass X-ray binaries from swift burst alert telescope observations

    SciTech Connect

    Corbet, Robin H. D.; Krimm, Hans A.

    2013-11-20

    We report the discovery using data from the Swift-Burst Alert Telescope (BAT) of superorbital modulation in the wind-accretion supergiant high-mass X-ray binaries 4U 1909+07 (= X 1908+075), IGR J16418–4532, and IGR J16479–4514. Together with already known superorbital periodicities in 2S 0114+650 and IGR J16493–4348, the systems exhibit a monotonic relationship between superorbital and orbital periods. These systems include both supergiant fast X-ray transients and classical supergiant systems, and have a range of inclination angles. This suggests an underlying physical mechanism which is connected to the orbital period. In addition to these sources with clear detections of superorbital periods, IGR J16393–4643 (= AX J16390.4–4642) is identified as a system that may have superorbital modulation due to the coincidence of low-amplitude peaks in power spectra derived from BAT, Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer Proportional Counter Array, and International Gamma-Ray Astrophysics Laboratory light curves. 1E 1145.1–6141 may also be worthy of further attention due to the amount of low-frequency modulation of its light curve. However, we find that the presence of superorbital modulation is not a universal feature of wind-accretion supergiant X-ray binaries.

  10. Superorbital Periodic Modulation in Wind-Accretion High-Mass X-Ray Binaries from Swift Burst Alert Telescope Observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Corbet, Robin H. D.; Krimm, Hans A.

    2013-01-01

    We report the discovery using data from the Swift-Burst Alert Telescope (BAT) of superorbital modulation in the wind-accretion supergiant high-mass X-ray binaries 4U 1909+07 (= X 1908+075), IGR J16418-4532, and IGR J16479-4514. Together with already known superorbital periodicities in 2S 0114+650 and IGR J16493-4348, the systems exhibit a monotonic relationship between superorbital and orbital periods. These systems include both supergiant fast X-ray transients and classical supergiant systems, and have a range of inclination angles. This suggests an underlying physical mechanism which is connected to the orbital period. In addition to these sources with clear detections of superorbital periods, IGR J16393-4643 (= AX J16390.4-4642) is identified as a system that may have superorbital modulation due to the coincidence of low-amplitude peaks in power spectra derived from BAT, Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer Proportional Counter Array, and International Gamma-Ray Astrophysics Laboratory light curves. 1E 1145.1-6141 may also be worthy of further attention due to the amount of low-frequency modulation of its light curve. However, we find that the presence of superorbital modulation is not a universal feature of wind-accretion supergiant X-ray binaries.

  11. Electromagnetic Spindown of a Transient Accreting Millisecond Pulsar During Quiescence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melatos, A.; Mastrano, A.

    2016-02-01

    The measured spindown rates in quiescence of the transient accreting millisecond pulsars IGR J00291+5934, XTE J1751-305, SAX J1808.4-3658, and Swift J1756.9-2508 have been used to estimate the magnetic moments of these objects assuming standard magnetic dipole braking. It is shown that this approach leads to an overestimate if the amount of residual accretion is enough to distort the magnetosphere away from a force-free configuration through magnetospheric mass loading or crushing, so that the lever arm of the braking torque migrates inside the light cylinder. We derive an alternative spindown formula and calculate the residual accretion rates where the formula is applicable. As a demonstration we apply the alternative spindown formula to produce updated magnetic moment estimates for the four objects above. We note that based on current uncertain observations of quiescent accretion rates, magnetospheric mass loading and crushing are neither firmly indicated nor ruled out in these four objects. Because quiescent accretion rates are not measured directly (only upper limits are placed), without more data it is impossible to be confident about whether the thresholds for magnetospheric mass loading or crushing are reached or not.

  12. A jet emission model to probe the dynamics of accretion and ejection coupling in black hole X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malzac, Julien

    2016-07-01

    Compact jets are probably the most common form of jets in X-ray binaries and Active Galactic Nuclei. They seem to be present in all sources in the so-called hard X-ray spectral state. They are characterised by a nearly flat Spectral Energy Distribution (SED) extending from the radio to the infrared bands. This emission is usually interpreted as partially self absorbed synchrotron emission from relativistic leptons accelerated in the jet. The observed flat spectral shape requires energy dissipation and acceleration of particules over a wide range of distances along the jet. This distributed energy dissipation is likely to be powered by internal shocks caused by fluctuations of the outflow velocity. I will discuss such an internal shock model in the context of black hole binaries. I will show that internal shocks can produce the observed SEDs and also predict a strong, wavelength dependent, variability that resembles the observed one. The assumed velocity fluctuations of the jet must originate in the accretion flow. The model thus predicts a strong connection between the observable properties of the jet in the radio to IR bands, and the variability of the accretion flow as observed in X-rays. If the model is correct, this offers a unique possibility to probe the dynamics of the coupled accretion and ejection processes leading to the formation of compact jets.

  13. High Spatial Resolution X-Ray Spectroscopy of the IC443 Pulsar Wind Nebula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swartz, Douglas A.; Weisskopf, Martin C.; Bucciantini, Niccolo; Clarke, Tracy E.; Karovska, Margarita; Pavlov, George G.; van der Horst, Alexander; Yukita, Mihoko; Zavlin, Vyacheslav

    2014-08-01

    Deep Chandra ACIS observations of the region around the putative pulsar CXOU J061705.3+222127, in the supernova remnant IC443, reveal a ~5" radius ring-like morphology surrounding the pulsar and a jet-like structure oriented roughly north-south across the ring and through the pulsar's location. The observations further confirm that (1) the spectrum and flux of the central object are consistent with a rotation-powered pulsar, (2) the non-thermal spectrum and morphology of the surrounding nebula are consistent with a pulsar wind, and (3) the spectrum at greater distances is consistent with thermal emission from the supernova remnant. The cometary shape of the nebula, suggesting motion towards the southwest, appears to be subsonic: There is no evidence for a strong bow shock; and the ring is not distorted by motion through the ambient medium. Comparing this observation with historical observations of the same target we set a 99-% confidence upper limit to the proper motion of CXOU J061705.3+222127 to be less than 310 km/s, with the best-fit (but not statistically significant) direction toward the west.

  14. High Spatial Resolution X-Ray Spectroscopy of the IC 443 Pulsar Wind Nebula and Environs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swartz, Douglas A.; Pavlov, George G.; Clarke, Tracy; Castelletti, Gabriela; Zavlin, Vyacheslav E.; Bucciantini, Niccolò; Karovska, Margarita; van der Horst, Alexander J.; Yukita, Mihoko; Weisskopf, Martin C.

    2015-07-01

    Deep Chandra ACIS observations of the region around the putative pulsar, CXOU J061705.3+222127, in the supernova remnant (SNR) IC 443 reveal an ∼5″ radius ring-like structure surrounding the pulsar and a jet-like feature oriented roughly north–south across the ring and through the pulsar's location at 06h17m5.ˢ200 + 22°21‧27.″52 (J2000.0 coordinates). The observations further confirm that (1) the spectrum and flux of the central object are consistent with a rotation-powered pulsar, (2) the non-thermal spectrum and morphology of the surrounding nebula are consistent with a pulsar wind, and (3) the spectrum at greater distances is consistent with thermal emission from the SNR. The cometary shape of the nebula, suggesting motion toward the southwest, appears to be subsonic: There is no evidence either spectrally or morphologically for a bow shock or contact discontinuity; the nearly circular ring is not distorted by motion through the ambient medium; and the shape near the apex of the nebula is narrow. Comparing this observation with previous observations of the same target, we set a 99% confidence upper limit to the proper motion of CXOU J061705.3+222127 to be less than 44 mas yr‑1 (310 km s‑1 for a distance of 1.5 kpc), with the best-fit (but not statistically significant) projected direction toward the west.

  15. Spectral and Temporal Properties of the Ultraluminous X-Ray Pulsar in M82 from 15 years of Chandra Observations and Analysis of the Pulsed Emission Using NuSTAR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brightman, Murray; Harrison, Fiona; Walton, Dominic J.; Fuerst, Felix; Hornschemeier, Ann; Zezas, Andreas; Bachetti, Matteo; Grefenstette, Brian; Ptak, Andrew; Tendulkar, Shriharsh; Yukita, Mihoko

    2016-01-01

    The recent discovery by Bachetti et al. of a pulsar in M82 that can reach luminosities of up to 1040 erg s-1, a factor of ˜100 times the Eddington luminosity for a 1.4 M⊙ compact object, poses a challenge for accretion physics. In order to better understand the nature of this source and its duty cycle, and in light of several physical models that have been subsequently published, we conduct a spectral and temporal analysis of the 0.5-8 keV X-ray emission from this source from 15 years of Chandra observations. We analyze 19 ACIS observations where the point-spread function (PSF) of the pulsar is not contaminated by nearby sources. We fit the Chandra spectra of the pulsar with a power-law model and a disk blackbody model, subjected to interstellar absorption in M82. We carefully assess for the effect of pile-up in our observations, where four observations have a pile-up fraction of >10%, which we account for during spectral modeling with a convolution model. When fitted with a power-law model, the average photon index when the source is at high luminosity (LX > 1039 erg s-1) is Γ = 1.33 ± 0.15. For the disk blackbody model, the average temperature is Tin = 3.24 ± 0.65 keV, the spectral shape being consistent with other luminous X-ray pulsars. We also investigated the inclusion of a soft excess component and spectral break, finding that the spectra are also consistent with these features common to luminous X-ray pulsars. In addition, we present spectral analysis from NuSTAR over the 3-50 keV range where we have isolated the pulsed component. We find that the pulsed emission in this band is best fit by a power-law with a high-energy cutoff, where Γ = 0.6 ± 0.3 and {E}{{C}}={14}-3+5 keV. While the pulsar has previously been identified as a transient, we find from our longer-baseline study that it has been remarkably active over the 15-year period, where for 9/19 (47%) observations that we analyzed, the pulsar appears to be emitting at a luminosity in excess of

  16. A broadband X-ray study of the Geminga pulsar with NuSTAR And XMM-Newton

    SciTech Connect

    Mori, Kaya; Gotthelf, Eric V.; Halpern, Jules P.; Beloborodov, Andrei M.; Hailey, Charles J.; Dufour, Francois; Kaspi, Victoria M.; An, Hongjun; Bachetti, Matteo; Boggs, Steven E.; Craig, William W.; Christensen, Finn E.; Harrison, Fiona A.; Kouveliotou, Chryssa; Pivovaroff, Michael J.; Stern, Daniel; Zhang, William W.

    2014-10-01

    We report on the first hard X-ray detection of the Geminga pulsar above 10 keV using a 150 ks observation with the Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) observatory. The double-peaked pulse profile of non-thermal emission seen in the soft X-ray band persists at higher energies. Broadband phase-integrated spectra over the 0.2-20 keV band with NuSTAR and archival XMM-Newton data do not fit to a conventional two-component model of a blackbody plus power law, but instead exhibit spectral hardening above ∼5 keV. We find that two spectral models fit the data well: (1) a blackbody (kT {sub 1} ∼ 42 eV) with a broken power law (Γ{sub 1} ∼ 2.0, Γ{sub 2} ∼ 1.4 and E {sub break} ∼ 3.4 keV) and (2) two blackbody components (kT {sub 1} ∼ 44 eV and kT {sub 2} ∼ 195 eV) with a power-law component (Γ ∼ 1.7). In both cases, the extrapolation of the Rayleigh-Jeans tail of the thermal component is consistent with the UV data, while the non-thermal component overpredicts the near-infrared data, requiring a spectral flattening at E ∼ 0.05-0.5 keV. While strong phase variation of the power-law index is present below ∼5 keV, our phase-resolved spectroscopy with NuSTAR indicates that another hard non-thermal component with Γ ∼ 1.3 emerges above ∼5 keV. The spectral hardening in non-thermal X-ray emission as well as spectral flattening between the optical and X-ray bands argue against the conjecture that a single power law may account for multi-wavelength non-thermal spectra of middle-aged pulsars.

  17. Testing the no-hair property of black holes with x-ray observations of accretion disks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Christopher J.; Gair, Jonathan R.

    2015-07-01

    Accretion disks around black holes radiate a significant fraction of the rest mass of the accreting material in the form of thermal radiation from within a few gravitational radii of the black hole (r ≲20 G M /c2). In addition, the accreting matter may also be illuminated by hard x rays from the surrounding plasma which adds fluorescent transition lines to the emission. This radiation is emitted by matter moving along geodesics in the metric; therefore the strong Doppler and gravitational redshifts observed in the emission encode information about the strong gravitational field around the black hole. In this paper the possibility of using the x-ray emission as a strong field test of general relativity is explored by calculating the spectra for both the transition line and thermal emission from a thin accretion disk in a series of parametrically deformed Kerr metrics. In addition the possibility of constraining a number of known black hole spacetimes in alternative theories of gravity is also considered.

  18. X-ray and gamma-ray emission of Sagittarius A* as a wind-accreting black hole

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mastichiadis, A.; Ozernoy, L. M.

    1994-01-01

    If, as many believe, Sgr A* is a massive black hole at the Galactic center, one should expect it to be a source of X-ray and gamma-ray activity, behaving basically as a scaled-down active galactic nucleus. An unavoidable source of accretion is the wind from IRS 16, a nearby group of hot, massive stars. Since the density and velocity of the accreting matter are known from observations, the accretion rate is basically a function of the putative black hole mass, M(sub h), only; this value represents a reliable lower limit to a real rate, given the other possible sources of accreting matter. Based on this and on the theories about shock acceleration in active galactic nuclei, we have estimated the expected production of relativistic particles and their hard radiation. These values turn out to be a function of M(sub h) as well. Comparing our results with available X-ray and gamma-ray observations which show Sgr A* to have a relatively low activity level, we conclude tentatively that the putative black hole in the Galactic center cannot have a mass greater than approximately 6 x 10(exp 3) solar mass. This conclusion is consistent with the upper limits to the black hole mass found by different methods earlier, although much more work is needed to make calculations of shock acceleration around black holes more reliable.

  19. Multi-wavelength properties of IGR J05007-7047 (LXP 38.55) and identification as a Be X-ray binary pulsar in the LMC

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasilopoulos, G.; Haberl, F.; Delvaux, C.; Sturm, R.; Udalski, A.

    2016-09-01

    We report on the results of a ˜40-d multi-wavelength monitoring of the Be X-ray binary system IGR J05007-7047 (LXP 38.55). During that period the system was monitored in the X-rays using the Swift telescope and in the optical with multiple instruments. When the X-ray luminosity exceeded 1036 erg s-1 we triggered an XMM-Newton ToO observation. Timing analysis of the photon events collected during the XMM-Newton observation reveals coherent X-ray pulsations with a period of 38.551(3) s (1σ), making it the 17th known high-mass X-ray binary pulsar in the LMC. During the outburst, the X-ray spectrum is fitted best with a model composed of an absorbed power law (Γ = 0.63) plus a high-temperature blackbody (kT ˜2 keV) component. By analysing ˜12 yr of available OGLE optical data we derived a 30.776(5) d optical period, confirming the previously reported X-ray period of the system as its orbital period. During our X-ray monitoring the system showed limited optical variability while its IR flux varied in phase with the X-ray luminosity, which implies the presence of a disc-like component adding cooler light to the spectral energy distribution of the system.

  20. Circinus X-1: a Laboratory for Studying the Accretion Phenomenon in Compact Binary X-Ray Sources. Ph.D. Thesis - Maryland Univ.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Robinson-Saba, J. L.

    1983-01-01

    Observations of the binary X-ray source Circinus X-1 provide samples of a range of spectral and temporal behavior whose variety is thought to reflect a broad continuum of accretion conditions in an eccentric binary system. The data support an identification of three or more X-ray spectral components, probably associated with distinct emission regions.

  1. X-ray Pulsation Searches with NICER

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, Paul S.; Arzoumanian, Zaven

    2016-04-01

    The Neutron Star Interior Composition Explorer (NICER) is an X-ray telescope with capabilities optimized for the study of the structure, dynamics, and energetics of neutron stars through high-precision timing of rotation- and accretion-powered pulsars in the 0.2-12 keV band. It has large collecting area (twice that of the XMM-Newton EPIC-pn camera), CCD-quality spectral resolution, and high-precision photon time tagging referenced to UTC through an onboard GPS receiver. NICER will begin its 18-month prime mission as an attached payload on the International Space Station around the end of 2016. I will describe the science planning for the pulsation search science working group, which is charged with searching for pulsations and studying flux modulation properties of pulsars and other neutron stars. A primary goal of our observations is to detect pulsations from new millisecond pulsars that will contribute to NICER’s studies of the neutron star equation of state through pulse profile modeling. Beyond that, our working group will search for pulsations in a range of source categories, including LMXBs, new X-ray transients that might be accreting millisecond pulsars, X-ray counterparts to unassociated Fermi LAT sources, gamma-ray binaries, isolated neutron stars, and ultra-luminous X-ray sources. I will survey our science plans and give an overview of our planned observations during NICER’s prime mission.

  2. Period variations in pulsating X-ray sources. I - Accretion flow parameters and neutron star structure from timing observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lamb, F. K.; Shaham, J.; Pines, D.

    1978-01-01

    Torque fluctuations which can lead to variations in the periods of pulsating X-ray sources are examined. A description of torque variations in terms of noise processes is developed, and the resulting noise models are applied to observations of several pulsating X-ray sources. It is shown that fluctuations in accretion torque could account for the observed period variations and spindown episodes in Her X-1 and Cen X-3. The values of the torque noise strengths inferred from either a nonresonant response or, in the case of Her X-1, a Tkachenko-mode interpretation of the data are found to be consistent with those expected from processes at the magnetospheric boundary of an accreting neutron star. Ways to distinguish among the various interpretations of the period variations are considered. It is noted that fluctuating mass-flow rates may be responsible for other phenomena observed in compact X-ray sources, such as wobble with zero initial amplitude and binary period variations in close binary systems experiencing mass transfer.

  3. The donor star of the X-ray pulsar X1908+075

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martínez-Núñez, S.; Sander, A.; Gímenez-García, A.; Gónzalez-Galán, A.; Torrejón, J. M.; Gónzalez-Fernández, C.; Hamann, W.-R.

    2015-06-01

    High-mass X-ray binaries consist of a massive donor star and a compact object. While several of those systems have been well studied in X-rays, little is known for most of the donor stars as they are often heavily obscured in the optical and ultraviolet regime. There is an opportunity to observe them at infrared wavelengths, however. The goal of this study is to obtain the stellar and wind parameters of the donor star in the X1908+075 high-mass X-ray binary system with a stellar atmosphere model to check whether previous studies from X-ray observations and spectral morphology lead to a sufficient description of the donor star. We obtained H- and K-band spectra of X1908+075 and analysed them with the Potsdam Wolf-Rayet (PoWR) model atmosphere code. For the first time, we calculated a stellar atmosphere model for the donor star, whose main parameters are: Mspec = 15 ± 6 M⊙, T∗ = 23-3+6 kK, log geff = 3.0 ± 0.2 and log L/L⊙ = 4.81 ± 0.25. The obtained parameters point towards an early B-type (B0-B3) star, probably in a supergiant phase. Moreover we determined a more accurate distance to the system of 4.85 ± 0.50 kpc than the previously reported value. Based on observations made with the William Herschel Telescope operated on the island of La Palma by the Isaac Newton Group in the Spanish Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias.Appendix A is available in electronic form at http://www.aanda.org

  4. The influence of accretion geometry on the spectral evolution during thermonuclear (type I) X-ray bursts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kajava, Jari J. E.; Nättilä, Joonas; Latvala, Outi-Marja; Pursiainen, Miika; Poutanen, Juri; Suleimanov, Valery F.; Revnivtsev, Mikhail G.; Kuulkers, Erik; Galloway, Duncan K.

    2014-12-01

    Neutron star (NS) masses and radii can be estimated from observations of photospheric radius-expansion X-ray bursts, provided the chemical composition of the photosphere, the spectral colour-correction factors in the observed luminosity range, and the emission area during the bursts are known. By analysing 246 X-ray bursts observed by the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer from 11 low-mass X-ray binaries, we find a dependence between the persistent spectral properties and the time evolution of the blackbody normalization during the bursts. All NS atmosphere models predict that the colour-correction factor decreases in the early cooling phase when the luminosity first drops below the limiting Eddington value, leading to a characteristic pattern of variability in the measured blackbody normalization. However, the model predictions agree with the observations for most bursts occurring in hard, low-luminosity, island spectral states, but rarely during soft, high-luminosity, banana states. The observed behaviour may be attributed to the accretion flow, which influences cooling of the NS preferentially during the soft state bursts. This result implies that only the bursts occurring in the hard, low-luminosity spectral states can be reliably used for NS mass and radius determination.

  5. PSR J2022 plus 3842: An Energetic Radio and X-Ray Pulsar Associated with SNR G76.9 plus 1.0

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arzoumanian, Z.; Gotthelf, E. V.; Ransom, S. M.; Kothes, R.; Landecker, T. L.

    2010-01-01

    We present Chandra X-ray Observatory, Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Radio Telescope (GBT), and Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) observations directed toward the radio supernova remnant (SNR) G76.9+1.0. The Chandra investigation reveals a hard, unresolved X-ray source coincident with the midpoint of the double-lobed radio morphology and surrounded by faint, compact X-ray nebulosity. These features suggest that an energetic neutron star is powering a pulsar wind nebula (PWN) seen in synchrotron emission. Indeed, the spatial relationship of the X-ray and radio emissions is remarkably similar to the extended emission around the Vela pulsar. A follow-up pulsation search with the GBT uncovered a highly-dispersed (DM = 427 +/- 1 pc/cu cm) and highly-scattered pulsar with a period of 24 ms. Its subsequently measured spin-down rate implies a characteristic age T(sub c) = 8.9 kyr, making PSR J2022+3842 the most rapidly rotating young radio pulsar known. With a spin-down luminosity E = 1.2 x 10(exp 38) erg/s, it is the second-most energetic Galactic pulsar known, after the Crab pulsar. The 24-ms pulsations have also been detected in the RXTE observation; the combined Chandra and RXTE spectral fit suggests that the Chandra point-source emission is virtually 100% pulsed. The 2-16 keV spectrum of the narrow (0.06 cycles FWHM) pulse is well-fitted by an absorbed power-law model with column density N(sub H) = (1.7 +/- 0.5) x 10(exp 22)/sq cm and photon index Gamma = 1.0 +/- 0.2, strongly suggestive of magnetospheric emission. For an assumed distance of 10 kpc, the 2-10 keV luminosity of L(sub X) = 6.9 x 10(exp 33) erg/s suggests one of the lowest known X-ray conversion efficiencies L(sub X)/ E = 5.8 x 10(exp -5), similar to that of the Vela pulsar. Finally, the PWN around PSR J2022+3842 revealed by Chandra is also underluminous, with F(sub PWN)/ F(sub PSR) < or approx.1 in the 2-10 keV band, a further surprise given the pulsar's high spin-down luminosity.

  6. Self-consistent models for Coulomb heated X-ray pulsar atmospheres

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, A.; Meszaros, S. P.; Kirk, J.; Galloway, D.

    1983-01-01

    Calculations of accreting magnetized neutron star atmospheres heated by the gradual deceleration of protons via Coulomb collisions are presented. Self consistent determinations of the temperature and density structure for different accretion rates are made by assuming hydrostatic equilibrium and energy balance, coupled with radiative transfer. The full radiative transfer in two polarizations, using magnetic cross sections but with cyclotron resonance effects treated approximately, is carried out in the inhomogeneous atmospheres.

  7. NuSTAR discovery of a cyclotron absorption line in the transient X-ray pulsar 2S 1553-542

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsygankov, Sergey S.; Lutovinov, Alexander A.; Krivonos, Roman A.; Molkov, Sergey V.; Jenke, Peter J.; Finger, Mark H.; Poutanen, Juri

    2016-03-01

    We report the results of a spectral and timing analysis of the poorly studied transient X-ray pulsar 2S 1553-542 using data collected with the NuSTAR and Chandra observatories and the Fermi/GBM instrument during an outburst in 2015. The properties of the source at high energies (>30 keV) are studied for the first time and the sky position has been essentially improved. The source broad-band spectrum has a quite complicated shape and can be reasonably described by a composite model with two continuum components - a blackbody emission with the temperature about 1 keV at low energies and a power law with an exponential cut-off at high energies. Additionally, an absorption feature at ˜23.5 keV is discovered both in phase-averaged and phase-resolved spectra and interpreted as the cyclotron resonance scattering feature corresponding to the magnetic field strength of the neutron star B ˜ 3 × 1012 G. Based on the Fermi/GBM data, the orbital parameters of the system were substantially improved, which allowed us to determine the spin period of the neutron star P = 9.27880(3) s and a local spin-up dot{P} ˜eq -7.5 × 10^{-10} s s-1 due to the mass accretion during the NuSTAR observations. Assuming accretion from the disc and using standard torque models, we estimated the distance to the system as d = 20 ± 4 kpc.

  8. 4U 1626--67: A prograde spinning X-ray pulsar in A 2500 s binary system

    SciTech Connect

    Middleditch, J.; Mason, K.O.; Nelson, J.E.; White, N.E.

    1981-03-15

    The binary period of 4U 1626--67 has been found from a careful analysis of its optical pulsations. A single lower frequency sidelobe of the 2.4% amplitude 7.68 s optical pulsations from this X-ray pulsar has been detected on at least three different nights in Fourier transforms of high speed photometry obtained with the CTIO 4 m telescope. The 0.42% sidelobe pulsations have a frequency which is 0.4011(21) mHz lower than the frequency of the direct pulsations near 130.26 mHz. The weaker sidelobe pulsations are interpreted as arising from X-ray to optical reprocessing on the companion star and are shifted to the lower frequency by the rotation frequency of the binary because the X-ray pulsar spins in the same sense as as the orbital motion (direct, or prograde). The orbital period is refined by connecting phases to be either 2491.06 s or 2492.32 s +- 0.13 s (the epoch for equal phases for the direct and lower sidelobe pulsations is JD 2,444,048.68162). Third harmonic (3F) structure in the lower sidelobe pulsations has enabled us to detect and measure the Doppler phase modulation due to the projected orbital motion and obtain an inclination-independent measurement of the total orbital separation. A simple geometrical model for the optical pulsations from the companion's Roche lobe is developed to calibrate the systematic effects of the measurements of orbital dimensions.With the help of a new limit of a/sub x/ sin i<0.04 lt-sec established from HEAO 1 data, the corrected values for the orbital parameters are: a/sub c/ sin i = 0.36(10) lt-sec, a/sub x/+a/sub c/ = 1.14(40) lt-sec, i = 18 /sup 0/(+18 /sup 0/, -7 /sup 0/) M/sub x/+M/sub c/ = 1.9(+2.8, -1.4) M/sub sun/, M/sub x/ = 1.8(+2.9, -1.3) M/sub sun/, and M/sub c/<0.5 Msun.

  9. PULSE AMPLITUDE DEPENDS ON kHz QPO FREQUENCY IN THE ACCRETING MILLISECOND PULSAR SAX J1808.4-3658

    SciTech Connect

    Bult, Peter; Van der Klis, Michiel

    2015-01-10

    We study the relation between the 300-700 Hz upper kHz quasi-periodic oscillation (QPO) and the 401 Hz coherent pulsations across all outbursts of the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar SAX J1808.4-3658 observed with the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer. We find that the pulse amplitude systematically changes by a factor of ∼2 when the upper kHz QPO frequency passes through 401 Hz: it halves when the QPO moves to above the spin frequency and doubles again on the way back. This establishes for the first time the existence of a direct effect of kHz QPOs on the millisecond pulsations and provides a new clue to the origin of the upper kHz QPO. We discuss several scenarios and conclude that while more complex explanations can not formally be excluded, our result strongly suggests that the QPO is produced by azimuthal motion at the inner edge of the accretion disk, most likely orbital motion. Depending on whether this azimuthal motion is faster or slower than the spin, the plasma then interacts differently with the neutron-star magnetic field. The most straightforward interpretation involves magnetospheric centrifugal inhibition of the accretion flow that sets in when the upper kHz QPO becomes slower than the spin.

  10. High-Energy X-rays from J174545.5-285829, the Cannonball: a Candidate Pulsar Wind Nebula Associated with Sgr a East

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nynka, Melania; Hailey, Charles J.; Mori, Kaya; Baganoff, Frederick K.; Bauer, Franz E.; Boggs, Steven E.; Craig, William W.; Christensen, Finn E.; Gotthelf, Eric V.; Harrison, Fiona A.; Hong, Jaesub; Perez, Kerstin M.; Stern, Daniel; Zhang, Shuo; Zhang, William W.

    2013-01-01

    We report the unambiguous detection of non-thermal X-ray emission up to 30 keV from the Cannonball, a few arcsecond long diffuse X-ray feature near the Galactic Center, using the NuSTAR X-ray observatory. The Cannonball is a high-velocity (v(proj) approximately 500 km s(exp -1)) pulsar candidate with a cometary pulsar wind nebula (PWN) located approximately 2' north-east from Sgr A*, just outside the radio shell of the supernova remnant Sagittarius A (Sgr A) East. Its non-thermal X-ray spectrum, measured up to 30 keV, is well characterized by a Gamma is approximately 1.6 power law, typical of a PWN, and has an X-ray luminosity of L(3-30 keV) = 1.3 × 10(exp 34) erg s(exp -1). The spectral and spatial results derived from X-ray and radio data strongly suggest a runaway neutron star born in the Sgr A East supernova event. We do not find any pulsed signal from the Cannonball. The NuSTAR observations allow us to deduce the PWN magnetic field and show that it is consistent with the lower limit obtained from radio observations.

  11. Gammy-Ray and Hard X-Ray Emission from Pulsar-aided Supernovae as a Probe of Particle Acceleration in Embryonic Pulsar Wind Nebulae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murase, Kohta; Kashiyama, Kazumi; Kiuchi, Kenta; Bartos, Imre

    2015-05-01

    It has been suggested that some classes of luminous supernovae (SNe) and gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) are driven by newborn magnetars. Fast-rotating proto-neutron stars have also been of interest as potential sources of gravitational waves (GWs). We show that for a range of rotation periods and magnetic fields, hard X-rays and GeV gamma rays provide us with a promising probe of pulsar-aided SNe. It is observationally known that young pulsar wind nebulae (PWNe) in the Milky Way are very efficient lepton accelerators. We argue that, if embryonic PWNe satisfy similar conditions at early stages of SNe (in ˜1-10 months after the explosion), external inverse-Compton emission via upscatterings of SN photons is naturally expected in the GeV range as well as broadband synchrotron emission. To fully take into account the Klein-Nishina effect and two-photon annihilation process that are important at early times, we perform detailed calculations including electromagnetic cascades. Our results suggest that hard X-ray telescopes such as NuSTAR can observe such early PWN emission by follow-up observations in months to years. GeV gamma-rays may also be detected by Fermi for nearby SNe, which serve as counterparts of these GW sources. Detecting the signals will give us an interesting probe of particle acceleration at early times of PWNe, as well as clues to driving mechanisms of luminous SNe and GRBs. Since the Bethe-Heitler cross section is lower than the Thomson cross section, gamma rays would allow us to study subphotospheric dissipation. We encourage searches for high-energy emission from nearby SNe, especially SNe Ibc including super-luminous objects.

  12. The 2005 Accretion Outburst in V1118 Ori: Evidence for A Spectral Change in X-rays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Audard, M.; Güdel, M.; Skinner, S. L.; Briggs, K. R.; Walter, F. M.; Stringfellow, G.; Hamilton, R. T.; Guinan, E. F.

    2005-12-01

    We present results from our X-ray monitoring campaign of the 2005 accretion outburst in the young low-mass star V1118 Ori. Optical and near-infrared photometry are presented as well. The X-ray data from early 2005 indicate that the X-ray flux and luminosity varied within a factor of two only, and were similar to the pre-outburst values measured in a serendipitous observation in 2002. Similarly, the hydrogen column density showed no evidence for significant excursions from the pre-outburst value of a few times 1021 cm-2. However, we observed a spectral change from a dominant hot plasma ( ˜ 25 MK) in 2002 and in January 2005 to a cooler plasma ( ˜ 8 MK) in February and March 2005. We argue that the closing in of the accretion disk during the outburst disrupted the hot magnetic loops high in the corona, whereas the lower cooler loops were less affected and became the dominant coronal component. We acknowledge support by NASA through Chandra award DD5-6029X and through XMM-Newton award NNG05GI96G to Columbia University. The Chandra X-ray Observatory Center is operated by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory for and on behalf of the NASA under contract NAS8-03060. Based on observations obtained with XMM-Newton, an ESA science mission with instruments and contributions directly funded by ESA Member States and NASA. The PSI group acknowledges support from the Swiss National Science Foundation (grants 20-58827.99 and 20-66875.01). Stony Brook's participation in SMARTS is made possible by support from the offices of the Provost and the Vice President for Research. We thank J. Allyn Smith, P. McGehee, J. Espinoza, and D. Gonzalez for doing the observations with the SMARTS telescopes. We also thank H. Tannanbaum, N. Schartel, and the VLA TOO panel for granting time to observe V1118 Ori.

  13. NUSTAR and SUZAKU X-ray spectroscopy of NGC 4151: Evidence for reflection from the inner accretion disk

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Keck, M. L.; Brenneman, L. W.; Ballantyne, D. R.; Bauer, F.; Boggs, S. E.; Christensen, F. E.; Craig, W. W.; Dauser, T.; Elvis, M.; Fabian, A. C.; et al

    2015-06-15

    We present X-ray timing and spectral analyses of simultaneous 150 ks Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) and Suzaku X-ray observations of the Seyfert 1.5 galaxy NGC 4151. We disentangle the continuum emission, absorption, and reflection properties of the active galactic nucleus (AGN) by applying inner accretion disk reflection and absorption-dominated models. With a time-averaged spectral analysis, we find strong evidence for relativistic reflection from the inner accretion disk. We find that relativistic emission arises from a highly ionized inner accretion disk with a steep emissivity profile, which suggests an intense, compact illuminating source. We find a preliminary, near-maximal black hole spinmore » $$a\\gt 0.9$$ accounting for statistical and systematic modeling errors. We find a relatively moderate reflection fraction with respect to predictions for the lamp post geometry, in which the illuminating corona is modeled as a point source. Through a time-resolved spectral analysis, we find that modest coronal and inner disk reflection (IDR) flux variation drives the spectral variability during the observations. As a result, we discuss various physical scenarios for the IDR model and we find that a compact corona is consistent with the observed features.« less

  14. Study of magnetic field effects for accretions with highly magnetized neutron stars in low mass X-ray binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sasano, Makoto; Enoto, Teruaki; Makishima, Kazuo; Sakurai, Soki

    Neutron stars (NSs) in high-mass X-ray binaries (HMXBs), namely those with massive privary stars, generally have strong magnetic fields (˜10 (12) G). In contrast, those in typical low mass binary systems (LMXBs) are weakly magnetized (˜10 (9-10) G). This clear difference in the magnetic field strength is considered to be primarily responsible for the systematic differences in X-ray properties between NSs in HMXBs and those in LMXBs. However, these can also be possible contributions from their accretion-scheme differences, i.e., wind capture in HMXBs and disk accretion in LMXBs. To separate these two effects, we may utilize a few highly-magnetized NSs in LMXBs, including Her X-1, GX 1+4, 4U 1626-67, and a recently recognized object 4U 1822-37 (Sasano et al. PASJ in press, arXiv:1311.4618). In this study, we compare spectral and timing properties of these exceptional strong-field NSs, with those of more typical objects in LMXBs an HMXBs. Their properties that are common with typical HMXBs can be regarded as a signature of strong magnetic fields while those shared by typical LMXBs can be attributed to the disk-fed accretion geometry.

  15. MAGNETOHYDRODYNAMIC MODELING OF THE ACCRETION SHOCKS IN CLASSICAL T TAURI STARS: THE ROLE OF LOCAL ABSORPTION IN THE X-RAY EMISSION

    SciTech Connect

    Bonito, R.; Argiroffi, C.; Peres, G.; Orlando, S.; Miceli, M.; Ibgui, L.; Matsakos, T.; Stehle, C.

    2014-11-10

    We investigate the properties of X-ray emission from accretion shocks in classical T Tauri stars (CTTSs), generated where the infalling material impacts the stellar surface. Both observations and models of the accretion process reveal several aspects that are still unclear: the observed X-ray luminosity in accretion shocks is below the predicted value, and the density versus temperature structure of the shocked plasma, with increasing densities at higher temperature, deduced from the observations, is at odds with that proposed in the current picture of accretion shocks. To address these open issues, we investigate whether a correct treatment of the local absorption by the surrounding medium is crucial to explain the observations. To this end, we describe the impact of an accretion stream on a CTTS by considering a magnetohydrodynamic model. From the model results, we synthesize the X-ray emission from the accretion shock by producing maps and spectra. We perform density and temperature diagnostics on the synthetic spectra, and we directly compare the results with observations. Our model shows that the X-ray fluxes inferred from the emerging spectra are lower than expected because of the complex local absorption by the optically thick material of the chromosphere and of the unperturbed stream. Moreover, our model, including the effects of local absorption, explains in a natural way the apparently puzzling pattern of density versus temperature observed in the X-ray emission from accretion shocks.

  16. MAXI/GSC detection of an onset of X-ray outburst from X-ray binary pulsar GS1843-02

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakajima, M.; Negoro, H.; Mihara, T.; Serino, M.; Sasaki, R.; Tanimoto, A.; Ueno, S.; Tomida, H.; Nakahira, S.; Kimura, M.; Ishikawa, M.; Nakagawa, Y. E.; Sugizaki, M.; Shidatsu, M.; Sugimoto, J.; Takagi, T.; Matsuoka, M.; Kawai, N.; Arimoto, M.; Yoshii, T.; Tachibana, Y.; Ono, Y.; Fujiwara, T.; Yoshida, A.; Sakamoto, T.; Kawakubo, Y.; Ohtsuki, H.; Tsunemi, H.; Imatani, R.; Negoro, H.; Tanaka, K.; Masumitsu, T.; Ueda, Y.; Kawamuro, T.; Hori, T.; Tsuboi, Y.; Kanetou, S.; Nakamura, Y.; Yamauchi, M.; Itoh, D.; Furuya, K.; Yamaoka, K.; Morii, M.; MAXI Report Team

    2015-12-01

    On 2015 December 8.12 (MJD 57364.12), the MAXI/GSC nova alert system detected an X-ray flux enhancement from a position of (R.A., Dec) = (282.5, -2.0). At almost the same time, the Swift/BAT observed a X-ray brightening from GS1843-02 (GCN#18675).

  17. Quasi-periodic oscillations in accreting magnetic white dwarfs. I. Observational constraints in X-ray and optical

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonnet-Bidaud, J. M.; Mouchet, M.; Busschaert, C.; Falize, E.; Michaut, C.

    2015-07-01

    Quasi-periodic oscillations (QPOs) are observed in the optical flux of some polars with typical periods of 1 to 3 s but none have been observed yet in X-rays where a significant part of the accreting energy is released. QPOs are expected and predicted from shock oscillations. Most of the polars have been observed by the XMM-Newton satellite. We made use of the homogeneous set of observations of the polars by XMM-Newton to search for the presence of QPOs in the (0.5-10 keV) energy range and to set significant upper limits for the brightest X-ray polars. We extracted high time-resolution X-ray light curves by taking advantage of the 0.07 s resolution of the EPIC-PN camera. Among the 65 polars observed with XMM-Newton from 1998 to 2012, a sample of 24 sources was selected on the basis of their counting rate in the PN instrument to secure significant limits. We searched for QPOs using Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) methods and defined limits of detection using statistical tools. Among the sample surveyed, none shows QPOs at a significant level. Upper limits to the fractional flux in QPOs range from 7% to 71%. These negative results are compared to the detailed theoretical predictions of numerical simulations based on a 2D hydrodynamical code presented in Paper II. Cooling instabilities in the accretion column are expected to produce shock quasi-oscillations with a maximum amplitude reaching ~40% in the bremsstrahlung (0.5-10 keV) X-ray emission and ~20% in the optical cyclotron emission. The absence of X-ray QPOs imposes an upper limit of ~(5-10) g cm-2 s-1 on the specific accretion rate but this condition is found inconsistent with the value required to account for the amplitudes and frequencies of the observed optical QPOs. This contradiction outlines probable shortcomings with the shock instability model. Figures 1-3 are available in electronic form at http://www.aanda.org

  18. The 805s X-ray pulsar H2252-035

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    White, N. E.; Marshall, F. E.

    1981-01-01

    The X-ray flux from the 3.6 hr binary system H2252-035 is shown to be modulated at a period of 805s. The spectrum is consistent with either a 1.4 photon index power law or 20 keV thermal model. A 560t0r-350 eV equivalent width iron line is seen at approximately 6.7 keV. The possibility that this system contains a slowly rotating neutron star is discussed.

  19. Orbital Parameters and Spectroscopy of the Transient X-Ray Pulsar 4U 0115+63

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mueller, Sebastian; Obst,Maria; Kreykenbohm, Ingo; Fuerst, Felix; Kuehnel, Matthias; Wilms, Joern; Klochkov, Dmitry; Staubert, Ruediger; Santangelo, Andrea; Pottschmidt, Katja; Suchy, Slawomir; Rothschild, Richard E.; Caballero, Isabel; Schoenherr, Gabriele

    2011-01-01

    We report on an outburst of the high mass X-ray binary 4U 0115+63 with a pulse period of 3.6s in spring 2008 as observed with INTEGRAL and RXTE. By analyzing the lightcurves we derive an updated orbital- and pulse period ephemeris of the neutron star. We also study the pulse profile variations as a function of time and energy as well as the variability of the spectral parameters. We find clear evidence for at least three cyclotron line features. In agreement with previous observations of 4U 0115+63, we detect an anti-correlation between the luminosity and the fundamental cyclotron line energy.

  20. Testing the Paradigm that Ultra-Luminous X-Ray Sources as a Class Represent Accreting Intermediate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berghea, C. T.; Weaver, K. A.; Colbert, E. J. M.; Roberts, T. P.

    2008-01-01

    To test the idea that ultraluminous X-ray sources (ULXs) in external galaxies represent a class of accreting Intermediate-Mass Black Holes (IMBHs), we have undertaken a program to identify ULXs and a lower luminosity X-ray comparison sample with the highest quality data in the Chandra archive. We establish a general property of ULXs that the most X-ray luminous objects possess the fattest X-ray spectra (in the Chandra band pass). No prior sample studies have established the general hardening of ULX spectra with luminosity. This hardening occurs at the highest luminosities (absorbed luminosity > or equals 5x10(exp 39) ergs/s) and is in line with recent models arguing that ULXs are actually stellar-mass black holes. From spectral modeling, we show that the evidence originally taken to mean that ULXs are IMBHs - i.e., the "simple IMBH model" - is nowhere near as compelling when a large sample of ULXs is looked at properly. During the last couple of years, XMM-Newton spectroscopy of ULXs has to some large extent begun to negate the simple IMBH model based on fewer objects. We confirm and expand these results, which validates the XMM-Newton work in a broader sense with independent X-ray data. We find (1) that cool disk components are present with roughly equal probability and total flux fraction for any given ULX, regardless of luminosity, and (2) that cool disk components extend below the standard ULX luminosity cutoff of 10(exp 39) ergs/s, down to our sample limit of 10(exp 38:3) ergs/s. The fact that cool disk components are not correlated with luminosity damages the argument that cool disks indicate IMBHs in ULXs, for which a strong statistical support was never made.

  1. A Non-radial Oscillation Mode in an Accreting Millisecond Pulsar?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strohmayer, Tod; Mahmoodifar, Simin

    2014-03-01

    We present results of targeted searches for signatures of non-radial oscillation modes (such as r- and g-modes) in neutron stars using RXTE data from several accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars (AMXPs). We search for potentially coherent signals in the neutron star rest frame by first removing the phase delays associated with the star's binary motion and computing fast Fourier transform power spectra of continuous light curves with up to 230 time bins. We search a range of frequencies in which both r- and g-modes are theoretically expected to reside. Using data from the discovery outburst of the 435 Hz pulsar XTE J1751-305 we find a single candidate, coherent oscillation with a frequency of 0.5727597 × νspin = 249.332609 Hz, and a fractional Fourier amplitude of 7.46 × 10-4. We estimate the significance of this feature at the 1.6 × 10-3 level, slightly better than a 3σ detection. Based on the observed frequency we argue that possible mode identifications include rotationally modified g-modes associated with either a helium-rich surface layer or a density discontinuity due to electron captures on hydrogen in the accreted ocean. In the latter case the presence of sufficient hydrogen in this ultracompact system with a likely helium-rich donor would present an interesting puzzle. Alternatively, the frequency could be identified with that of an inertial mode or a core r-mode modified by the presence of a solid crust; however, the r-mode amplitude required to account for the observed modulation amplitude would induce a large spin-down rate inconsistent with the observed pulse timing measurements. For the AMXPs XTE J1814-338 and NGC 6440 X-2 we do not find any candidate oscillation signals, and we place upper limits on the fractional Fourier amplitude of any coherent oscillations in our frequency search range of 7.8 × 10-4 and 5.6 × 10-3, respectively. We briefly discuss the prospects and sensitivity for similar searches with future, larger X-ray collecting area

  2. Discovery of Radio Pulsations from the X-ray Pulsar JO205+6449 in Supernova Remnant 3C58 with the Green Bank Telescope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Camilo, F.; Stairs, I. H.; Lorimer, D. R.; Backer, D. C.; Ransom, S. M.; Klein, B.; Wielebinski, R.; Kramer, M.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Arzoumanian, Z.; White, Nicholas E. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    We report the discovery with the 100m Green Bank Telescope of 65 ms radio pulsations from the X-ray pulsar J0205+6449 at the center of supernova remnant 3C58, making this possibly the youngest radio pulsar known. From our observations at frequencies of 820 and 1375 MHz, the free electron column density to USSR J0205+6449 is found to be 140.7 +/- 0.3/cc pc. The barycentric pulsar period P and P(dot) determined from a phase-coherent timing solution are consistent with the values previously measured from X-ray observations. The averaged radio profile of USSR J0205+6449 consists of one sharp pulse of width = 3 ms = 0.05 P. The pulsar is an exceedingly weak radio source, with pulse-averaged flux density in the 1400 MHz band of approximately 45 micro-Jy and a spectral index of approximately -2.1. Its radio luminosity of approximately 0.5 may kpc(exp 2) at 1400 MHz is lower than that of approximately 99% of known pulsar and is the lowest among known young pulsars.

  3. The Reawakening of the Sleeping X-ray Pulsar XTE J1946+274

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mueller, Sebastian; Mueller, Sebastian; Kuechnel, Matthias; Fuerst, Felix; Kreykenbohm, Ingo; Sagredo, Macarena; Obst, Maria; Wilms, Joern; Caballero, Isabel; Potttschmidt, Katja; Ferrigno, Carlo; Rothschild, Richard E.

    2012-01-01

    We report on a series of outbursts of the high mass X-ray binary XTE 11946+274 in 2010/2011 as observed with INTEGRAL, RXTE, and Swift. We discuss possible mechanisms resulting in the extraordinary outburst behavior of this source. The X-ray spectra can be described by standard phenomenological models, enhanced by an absorption feature of unknown origin at about 10 keV and a narrow iron K alpha fluorescence line at 6.4keV, which are variable in flux and pulse phase. We find possible evidence for the presence of a cyclotron resonance scattering feature at about 25 keV at the 93% level. The presence of a strong cyclotron line at 35 keV seen in data from the source's 1998 outburst and confirmed by a reanalysis of these data can be excluded. This result indicates that the cyclotron line feature in XTE 11946+274 is variable between individual outbursts.

  4. Thermonuclear flashes on accreting neutron stars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Joss, P. C.

    1979-01-01

    Observations of X-ray bursts from binary pulsars and globular clusters are reviewed. The previously proposed hypothesis is considered that such X-ray bursts result from thermonuclear flashes on accreting neutron stars. A general scenario for this mechanism is outlined, and numerical computations of the evolution of the surface layers of an accreting neutron star are discussed. The relation of these calculations to X-ray bursts and other phenomena is examined. Possible improvements in the numerical calculations are suggested.

  5. The 2006-2007 Active Phase Of Anomalous X-Ray Pulsar 4U 0142+61: Radiative and Timing Changes, Bursts, and Burst Spectral Features

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gavril, Fotis P.; Dib, Rim; Kaspi, Victoria M.

    2009-01-01

    After at least 6 years of quiescence, Anomalous X-ray Pulsar (AXP) 4U 0142+61 entered an active phase in 2006 March that lasted several months and included six X-ray bursts as well as many changes in the persistent X-ray emission. The bursts, the first seen from this AXP in >11 years of Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer monitoring, all occurred in the interval between 2006 April 6 and 2007 February 7. The burst durations ranged from 8-3x10(exp 3)s. The first five burst spectra are well modeled by blackbodies, with temperatures kT approx. 2 - 6 keV. However, the sixth burst had a complicated spectrum that is well characterized by a blackbody plus three emission features whose amplitude varied throughout the burst. The most prominent feature was at 14.0 keV. Upon entry into the active phase the pulsar showed a significant change in pulse morphology and a likely timing glitch. The glitch had a total frequency jump of (1.9+/-0.4)x10(exp -7) Hz, which recovered with a decay time of 17+/-2 days by more than the initial jump, implying a net spin-down of the pulsar. We discuss these events in the context of the magnetar model.

  6. Ordinary X-Rays from Three Extraordinary Millisecond Pulsars: XMM-Newton Observations of PSRs J0337+1715, J0636+5129, and J0645+5158

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spiewak, Renée; Kaplan, David L.; Archibald, Anne; Gentile, Peter; Hessels, Jason; Lorimer, Duncan; Lynch, Ryan; McLaughlin, Maura; Ransom, Scott; Stairs, Ingrid; Stovall, Kevin

    2016-05-01

    We present the first X-ray observations of three recently discovered millisecond pulsars (MSPs) with interesting characteristics: PSR J0337+1715, PSR J0636+5129, and PSR J0645+5158. PSR J0337+1715 is a fast-spinning, bright, and so-far unique MSP in a hierarchical triple system with two white dwarf companions. PSR J0636+5129 is an MSP in a very tight 96-minute orbit with a low-mass, 8 M J companion. PSR J0645+5158 is a nearby, isolated MSP with a very small duty cycle (1%–2%), which has led to its inclusion in high-precision pulsar timing programs. Using data from XMM-Newton, we have analyzed X-ray spectroscopy for these three objects, as well as optical/ultraviolet photometry for PSR J0337+1715. The X-ray data for each are largely consistent with expectations for most MSPs with regards to the ratios of thermal and non-thermal emission. We discuss the implications of these data on the pulsar population, and prospects for future observations of these pulsars.

  7. Puzzling accretion onto a black hole in the ultraluminous X-ray source M 101 ULX-1.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ji-Feng; Bregman, Joel N; Bai, Yu; Justham, Stephen; Crowther, Paul

    2013-11-28

    There are two proposed explanations for ultraluminous X-ray sources (ULXs) with luminosities in excess of 10(39) erg s(-1). They could be intermediate-mass black holes (more than 100-1,000 solar masses, M sun symbol) radiating at sub-maximal (sub-Eddington) rates, as in Galactic black-hole X-ray binaries but with larger, cooler accretion disks. Alternatively, they could be stellar-mass black holes radiating at Eddington or super-Eddington rates. On its discovery, M 101 ULX-1 had a luminosity of 3 × 10(39) erg s(-1) and a supersoft thermal disk spectrum with an exceptionally low temperature--uncomplicated by photons energized by a corona of hot electrons--more consistent with the expected appearance of an accreting intermediate-mass black hole. Here we report optical spectroscopic monitoring of M 101 ULX-1. We confirm the previous suggestion that the system contains a Wolf-Rayet star, and reveal that the orbital period is 8.2 days. The black hole has a minimum mass of 5 M sun symbol, and more probably a mass of 20 M sun symbol-30 M sun symbol, but we argue that it is very unlikely to be an intermediate-mass black hole. Therefore, its exceptionally soft spectra at high Eddington ratios violate the expectations for accretion onto stellar-mass black holes. Accretion must occur from captured stellar wind, which has hitherto been thought to be so inefficient that it could not power an ultraluminous source. PMID:24284727

  8. Studies of the Origin of High-frequency Quasi-periodic Oscillations of Mass-accreting Black Holes in X-Ray Binaries with Next-generation X-Ray Telescopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beheshtipour, Banafsheh; Hoormann, Janie K.; Krawczynski, Henric

    2016-08-01

    Observations with RXTE (Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer) revealed the presence of high-frequency quasi-periodic oscillations (HFQPOs) of the X-ray flux from several accreting stellar-mass black holes. HFQPOs (and their counterparts at lower frequencies) may allow us to study general relativity in the regime of strong gravity. However, the observational evidence today does not yet allow us to distinguish between different HFQPO models. In this paper we use a general-relativistic ray-tracing code to investigate X-ray timing spectroscopy and polarization properties of HFQPOs in the orbiting Hotspot model. We study observational signatures for the particular case of the 166 Hz quasi-periodic oscillation (QPO) in the galactic binary GRS 1915+105. We conclude with a discussion of the observability of spectral signatures with a timing-spectroscopy experiment such as the LOFT (Large Observatory for X-ray Timing) and polarization signatures with space-borne X-ray polarimeters such as IXPE (Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer), PolSTAR (Polarization Spectroscopic Telescope Array), PRAXyS(Polarimetry of Relativistic X-ray Sources), or XIPE (X-ray Imaging Polarimetry Explorer). A mission with high count rate such as LOFT would make it possible to get a QPO phase for each photon, enabling the study of the QPO-phase-resolved spectral shape and the correlation between this and the flux level. Owing to the short periods of the HFQPOs, first-generation X-ray polarimeters would not be able to assign a QPO phase to each photon. The study of QPO-phase-resolved polarization energy spectra would thus require simultaneous observations with a first-generation X-ray polarimeter and a LOFT-type mission.

  9. XMM-Newton observations of the Small Magellanic Cloud: Be/X-ray binary pulsars active between October 2006 and June 2007

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haberl, F.; Eger, P.; Pietsch, W.

    2008-10-01

    Aims: We analysed eight XMM-Newton observations toward the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC), performed between October 2006 and June 2007, to investigate high mass X-ray binary systems. Methods: We produced images from the European Photon Imaging Cameras (EPIC) and extracted X-ray spectra and light curves in different energy bands from sources that yielded a sufficiently high number of counts for a detailed temporal and spectral analysis. To search for periodicity we applied Fourier transformations and folding techniques and determined pulse periods using a Bayesian approach. To identify optical counterparts we produced X-ray source lists for each observation using maximum likelihood source detection techniques and correlated them with optical catalogues. The correlations were also used for astrometric boresight corrections of the X-ray source positions. Results: We found new X-ray binary pulsars with periods of 202 s (XMMU J005929.0-723703), 342 s (XMMU J005403.8-722632), 645 s (XMMU J005535.2-722906) and 325 s (XMMU J005252.1-721715), in the latter case confirming the independent discovery in Chandra data. In addition we detected sixteen known Be/X-ray binary pulsars and six ROSAT-classified candidate high mass X-ray binaries. From one of the candidates, RX J0058.2-7231, we discovered X-ray pulsations with a period of 291 s which makes it the likely counterpart of XTE J0051-727. From the known pulsars, we revise the pulse period of CXOU J010206.6-714115 to 967 s, and we detected the 18.37 s pulsar XTE J0055-727 (=XMM J004911.4-724939) in outburst, which allowed us to localise the source. The pulse profiles of the X-ray pulsars show a wide variety of shapes from smooth to highly structured patterns and differing energy dependence. For all the candidate high mass X-ray binaries, optical counterparts can be identified with magnitudes and colours consistent with Be stars. Twenty of the Be/X-ray binaries were detected with X-ray luminosities in the range 1.5 × 1035-5.5

  10. DISCOVERY OF {gamma}-RAY PULSATION AND X-RAY EMISSION FROM THE BLACK WIDOW PULSAR PSR J2051-0827

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, J. H. K.; Kong, A. K. H.; Huang, R. H. H.; Tam, P. H. T.; Takata, J.; Wu, E. M. H.; Cheng, K. S. E-mail: akong@phys.nthu.edu.tw

    2012-04-01

    We report the discovery of pulsed {gamma}-ray emission and X-ray emission from the black widow millisecond pulsar PSR J2051-0827 by using the data from the Large Area Telescope (LAT) on board the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope and the Advanced CCD Imaging Spectrometer array on the Chandra X-Ray Observatory. Using three years of LAT data, PSR J2051-0827 is clearly detected in {gamma}-rays with a significance of {approx}8{sigma} in the 0.2-20 GeV band. The 200 MeV-20 GeV {gamma}-ray spectrum of PSR J2051-0827 can be modeled by a simple power law with a photon index of 2.46 {+-} 0.15. Significant ({approx}5{sigma}) {gamma}-ray pulsations at the radio period were detected. PSR J2051-0827 was also detected in soft (0.3-7 keV) X-ray with Chandra. By comparing the observed {gamma}-rays and X-rays with theoretical models, we suggest that the {gamma}-ray emission is from the outer gap while the X-rays can be from intra-binary shock and pulsar magnetospheric synchrotron emissions.

  11. Revealing accretion on to black holes: X-ray reflection throughout three outbursts of GX 339-4

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plant, D. S.; Fender, R. P.; Ponti, G.; Muñoz-Darias, T.; Coriat, M.

    2014-08-01

    Understanding the dynamics behind black hole state transitions and the changes they reflect in outbursts has become long-standing problem. The X-ray reflection spectrum describes the interaction between the hard X-ray source (the power-law continuum) and the cool accretion disc it illuminates, and thus permits an indirect view of how the two evolve. We present a systematic analysis of the reflection spectrum throughout three outbursts (500+ observations) of the black hole binary GX 339-4, representing the largest study applying a self-consistent treatment of reflection to date. Particular attention is paid to the coincident evolution of the power law and reflection, which can be used to determine the accretion geometry. The hard state is found to be distinctly reflection weak; however, the ratio of reflection to power law gradually increases as the source luminosity rises. In contrast, the reflection is found to dominate the power law throughout most of the soft state, with increasing supremacy as the source decays. We discuss potential dynamics driving this, favouring inner disc truncation and decreasing coronal height for the hard and soft states, respectively. Evolution of the ionization parameter, power-law slope and high-energy cut-off also agree with this interpretation.

  12. Timing of the accreting millisecond pulsar SAX J1748.9-2021 during its 2015 outburst

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanna, A.; Burderi, L.; Riggio, A.; Pintore, F.; Di Salvo, T.; Gambino, A. F.; Iaria, R.; Matranga, M.; Scarano, F.

    2016-06-01

    We report on the timing analysis of the 2015 outburst of the intermittent accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar SAX J1748.9-2021 observed on March 4 by the X-ray satellite XMM-Newton. By phase connecting the time of arrivals of the observed pulses, we derived the best-fitting orbital solution for the 2015 outburst. We investigated the energy pulse profile dependence finding that the pulse fractional amplitude increases with energy while no significant time lags are detected. Moreover, we investigated the previous outbursts from this source, finding previously undetected pulsations in some intervals during the 2010 outburst of the source. Comparing the updated set of orbital parameters, in particular the value of the time of passage from the ascending node, with the orbital solutions reported from the previous outbursts, we estimated for the first time the orbital period derivative corresponding with dot{P}_{orb}=(1.1± 0.3)× 10^{-10} s s-1. We note that this value is significant at 3.5σ confidence level, because of significant fluctuations with respect to the parabolic trend and more observations are needed in order to confirm the finding. Assuming the reliability of the result, we suggest that the large value of the orbital-period derivative can be explained as a result of a highly non-conservative mass transfer driven by emission of gravitational waves, which implies the ejection of matter from a region close to the inner Lagrangian point. We also discuss possible alternative explanations.

  13. The Behavior of Accretion Disks in Low Mass X-ray Binaries: Disk Winds and Alpha Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bayless, Amanda J.

    2010-01-01

    This dissertation presents research on two low mass X-ray binaries. The eclipsing low-mass X-ray binary 4U 1822-371 is the prototypical accretion disk corona (ADC) system. We have obtained new time-resolved UV spectroscopy with the ACS/SBC on the Hubble Space Telescope and new V- and J-band photometry with the 1.3-m SMARTS telescope at CTIO. We show that the accretion disk in the system has a strong wind with projected velocities up to 4000 km/s as determined from the Doppler width of the C IV emission line. The broad and shallow eclipse indicates that the disk has a vertically-extended, optically-thick component at optical wavelengths. This component extends almost to the edge of the disk and has a height equal to 50% of the disk radius. As it has a low brightness temperature, we identify it as the optically-thick base of the disk wind. V1408 Aql (=4U 1957+115) is a low mass X-ray binary which continues to be a black hole candidate. We have new photometric data of this system from the Otto Struve 2.1-m telescope's high speed CCD photometer at McDonald Observatory. The light curve is largely sinusoidal which we model with two components: a constant light source from the disk and a sinusoidal modulation at the orbital period from the irradiated face of the companion star. This is a radical re-interpretation of the orbital light curve. We do not require a large or asymmetric disk rim to account for the modulation in the light curve. Thus, the orbital inclination is unconstrained in our new model, removing the foundation for any claims of the compact object being a black hole.

  14. The fate of accreted CNO elements in neutron star atmospheres - X-ray bursts and gamma-ray lines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bildstein, Lars; Salpeter, Edwin E.; Wasserman, Ira

    1992-01-01

    The fate of incident C-12, N-14, and O-16 in accreting neutron star atmospheres is described. When the accreting material is stopped by Coulomb collisions with atmospheric electrons, all incoming elements heavier than helium thermalize at higher altitudes in the atmosphere than the accreting protons. The incoming protons and helium then destroy the elements via nuclear spallation reactions. A small fraction of the nuclear reactions cause nuclear excitation and subsequent gamma-ray emission. The probability for a nucleus to survive this bombardment depends on how long it spends in the hazardous region of the atmosphere. The fractions of incident C-12, N-14, and O-16 that survive proton bombardment are calculated as a function of the accretion rate, and the mass and radius of the neutron star. The subsequent paucity of CNO nuclei decreases hydrogen-burning rates in the deep regions of the atmosphere, thereby reducing the amount of helium available for the unstable nuclear flashes that cause type I X-ray bursts. The gamma-ray line emission from this collisional deceleration scenario is determined.

  15. SXP523 = Suzaku J0102-7204 = 2XMM J010247.4-720449, a Be/X-ray binary pulsar in the SMC

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haberl, F.; Sturm, R.; Tsujimoto, M.; Wada, Q.; Ebisawa, K.; Miller, E.; Coe, M. J.; Klus, H.; Beardmore, A. P.

    2012-12-01

    After application of an attitude correction to the Suzaku observation of the supernova remnant 1E 0102.2-7219 described in ATel #4628, we derive an improved position for the X-ray pulsar Suzaku J0102-7204 of R.A. = 01:02:46.8, and Dec. = -72:04:56 (J2000, 1 sigma uncertainty of 20 arcsec). The new position is consistent with that of the Be/X-ray binary 2XMM J010247.4-720449 in the Small Magellanic Cloud seen by XMM-Newton, Swift and Chandra (ATel #3761) and most likely all detections are from the same source.

  16. The XMM-Newton Bright Survey sample of absorbed quasars: X-ray and accretion properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ballo, L.; Severgnini, P.; Della Ceca, R.; Caccianiga, A.; Vignali, C.; Carrera, F. J.; Corral, A.; Mateos, S.

    2014-11-01

    Although absorbed quasars are extremely important for our understanding of the energetics of the Universe, the main physical parameters of their central engines are still poorly known. In this work, we present and study a complete sample of 14 quasars (QSOs) that are absorbed in the X-rays (column density NH > 4 × 1021 cm-2 and X-ray luminosity L 2-10 keV > 1044 ergs-1; XQSO2) belonging to the XMM-Newton Bright Serendipitous Survey (XBS). From the analysis of their ultraviolet-to-mid-infrared spectral energy distribution, we can separate the nuclear emission from the host galaxy contribution, obtaining a measurement of the fundamental nuclear parameters, like the mass of the central supermassive black hole and the value of Eddington ratio, λ Edd. Comparing the properties of XQSO2s with those previously obtained for the X-ray unabsorbed QSOs in the XBS, we do not find any evidence that the two samples are drawn from different populations. In particular, the two samples span the same range in Eddington ratios, up to λ Edd ˜ 0.5; this implies that our XQSO2s populate the `forbidden region' in the so-called `effective Eddington limit paradigm'. A combination of low grain abundance, presence of stars inwards of the absorber, and/or anisotropy of the disc emission can explain this result.

  17. X-RAYING AN ACCRETION DISK IN REALTIME: THE EVOLUTION OF IONIZED REFLECTION DURING A SUPERBURST FROM 4U 1636-536

    SciTech Connect

    Keek, L.; Ballantyne, D. R.; Kuulkers, E.; Strohmayer, T. E.

    2014-12-20

    When a thermonuclear X-ray burst ignites on an accreting neutron star, the accretion disk undergoes sudden strong X-ray illumination, which can drive a range of processes in the disk. Observations of superbursts, with durations of several hours, provide the best opportunity to study these processes and to probe accretion physics. Using detailed models of X-ray reflection, we perform time resolved spectroscopy of the superburst observed from 4U 1636-536 in 2001 with the Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer. The spectra are consistent with a blackbody reflecting off a photoionized accretion disk, with the ionization state dropping with time. The evolution of the reflection fraction indicates that the initial reflection occurs from a part of the disk at larger radius, subsequently transitioning to reflection from an inner region of the disk. Even though this superburst did not reach the Eddington limit, we find that a strong local absorber develops during the superburst. Including this event, only two superbursts have been observed by an instrument with sufficient collecting area to allow for this analysis. It highlights the exciting opportunity for future X-ray observatories to investigate the processes in accretion disks when illuminated by superbursts.

  18. A WHITE DWARF MERGER AS PROGENITOR OF THE ANOMALOUS X-RAY PULSAR 4U 0142+61?

    SciTech Connect

    Rueda, J. A.; Boshkayev, K.; Izzo, L.; Ruffini, R.; Loren-Aguilar, P.; Kuelebi, B.; Aznar-Siguan, G.; Garcia-Berro, E. E-mail: enrique.garcia-berro@upc.edu

    2013-08-01

    It has been recently proposed that massive, fast-rotating, highly magnetized white dwarfs could describe the observational properties of some of soft gamma-ray repeaters and anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs). Moreover, it has also been shown that high-field magnetic white dwarfs can be the outcome of white dwarf binary mergers. The products of these mergers consist of a hot central white dwarf surrounded by a rapidly rotating disk. Here we show that the merger of a double degenerate system can explain the characteristics of the peculiar AXP 4U 0142+61. This scenario accounts for the observed infrared excess. We also show that the observed properties of 4U 0142+6 are consistent with an approximately 1.2 M{sub Sun} white dwarf, remnant of the coalescence of an original system made of two white dwarfs of masses 0.6 M{sub Sun} and 1.0 M{sub Sun }. Finally, we infer a post-merging age {tau}{sub WD} Almost-Equal-To 64 kyr and a magnetic field B Almost-Equal-To 2 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 8} G. Evidence for such a magnetic field may come from the possible detection of the electron cyclotron absorption feature observed between the B and V bands at Almost-Equal-To 10{sup 15} Hz in the spectrum of 4U 0142+61.

  19. Pulse Phase Dependence of Low Energy Emission Lines in an X-ray pulsar 4U 1626-67 during its spin-up and spin-down phase

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beri, Aru; Paul, Biswajit; Dewangan, Gulab Chand

    2016-07-01

    We will present the results obtained from the new observation of an ultra-compact X-ray binary pulsar 4U 1626-67, carried out with the XMM-Newton observatory. 4U 1626-67, a unique accretion powered pulsar underwent two torque reversals since its discovery in 1977. Pulse phase resolved spectroscopy of this source performed using the data from the XMM-Newton observatory during its spin-down phase revealed the dependence of the emission lines on the pulse phase. O VII emission line at 0.569 keV showed the maximum variation by factor of 4. These variations were interpreted due to warps in the accretion disk (Beri et al. 2015). Radiation pressure induced warping is also believed to be the cause for spin-down. In light of this possible explanation for spin-down torque reversal we expect different line variability during the spin-up phase. We will discuss the implications of the results obtained after performing pulse phase resolved spectroscopy using data from the EPIC-pn during the current spin-up phase. Detailed study of the prominent Neon and Oxygen line complexes with the high resolution Reflection Grating Spectrometer (RGS) on-board XMM-Newton will also be presented.

  20. The X-Ray Structure and Spectrum of the Pulsar Wind Nebula Surrounding PSR B1853+01 in W44

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Petre, R.; Kuntz, K. D.; Shelton, R. L.; White, Nicholas E. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    We present the result of a Chandra ACIS observation of the pulsar PSR B1853+01 and its associated pulsar wind nebula (PWN), embedded within the supernova remnant W44. A hard band ACIS map cleanly distinguishes the PWN from the thermal emission of W44. The nebula is extended in the north-south direction, with an extent about half that of the radio emission. Morphological differences between the X-ray and radio images are apparent. Spectral fitting reveals a clear difference in spectral index between the hard emission from PSR B1853+01 (Gamma approx. 1.4) and the extended nebula (Gamma approx. 2.2). The more accurate values for the X-ray flux and spectral index are used refine estimates for PWN parameters, including magnetic field strength, the average Lorentz factor gamma of the particles in the wind, the magnetization parameter sigma, and the ratio k of electrons to other particles.

  1. Thermonuclear processes on accreting neutron stars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Joss, P. C.

    1981-01-01

    Theoretical models for X-ray burst sources that invoke thermonuclear flashes on the surface layers of an accreting neutron star are discussed. The historical development of X-ray burst observation is summarized, and a physical picture of a neutron star undergoing accretion is drawn. Detailed numerical computations of the evolution of the surface layers of such a star are reviewed. The need for general relativistic corrections to the model is pointed out. Finally, comparisons are made with observations of X-ray bursts, the rapid burster, fast X-ray transients, X-ray pulsars, and gamma-ray burst sources.

  2. REVEALING THE STRUCTURE OF AN ACCRETION DISK THROUGH ENERGY-DEPENDENT X-RAY MICROLENSING

    SciTech Connect

    Chartas, G.; Moore, D.; Kochanek, C. S.; Mosquera, A. M.; Blackburne, J. A.; Dai, X.

    2012-10-01

    We present results from monitoring observations of the gravitationally lensed quasar RX J1131-1231 performed with the Chandra X-Ray Observatory. The X-ray observations were planned with relatively long exposures that allowed a search for energy-dependent microlensing in the soft (0.2-2 keV) and hard (2-10 keV) light curves of the images of RX J1131-1231. We detect significant microlensing in the X-ray light curves of images A and D, and energy-dependent microlensing of image D. The magnification of the soft band appears to be larger than that in the hard band by a factor of {approx}1.3 when image D becomes more magnified. This can be explained by the difference between a compact, softer-spectrum corona that is producing a more extended, harder spectrum reflection component off the disk. This is supported by the evolution of the fluorescent iron line in image D over three consecutive time-averaged phases of the light curve. In the first period, an Fe line at E = 6.35{sup +0.14}{sub -0.14} keV is detected (at >99% confidence). In the second period, two Fe lines are detected, one at E = 5.50{sup +0.03}{sub -0.08} keV (detected at >99% confidence) and another at E = 6.04{sup +0.10}{sub -0.07} keV (marginally detected at >90% confidence), and in the third period, a broadened Fe line at 6.42{sup +0.16}{sub -0.14} keV is detected (at >99% confidence). This evolution of the Fe line profile during the microlensing event is consistent with the line distortion expected when a caustic passes over the inner disk where the shape of the fluorescent Fe line is distorted by general relativistic and Doppler effects.

  3. Accretion flow diagnostics with X-ray spectral timing: the hard state of SWIFT J1753.5-0127

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cassatella, P.; Uttley, P.; Maccarone, T. J.

    2012-12-01

    Recent XMM-Newton studies of X-ray variability in the hard states of black hole X-ray binaries (BHXRBs) indicate that the variability is generated in the 'standard' optically thick accretion disc that is responsible for the multi-colour blackbody emission. The variability originates in the disc as mass-accretion fluctuations and propagates through the disc to 'light up' inner disc regions, eventually modulating the power-law emission that is produced relatively centrally. Both the covariance spectra and time-lags that cover the soft bands strongly support this scenario. Here, we present a comparative spectral-timing study of XMM-Newton data from the BHXRB SWIFT J1753.5-0127 in a bright 2009 hard state with that from the significantly fainter 2006 hard state to show for the first time the change in disc spectral-timing properties associated with a global increase in both the accretion rate and the relative contribution of the disc emission to the bolometric luminosity. We show that, although there is strong evidence for intrinsic disc variability in the more luminous hard state, the disc variability amplitude is suppressed relative to that of the power-law emission, which contrasts with the behaviour at lower luminosities where the disc variability is slightly enhanced when compared with the power-law variations. Furthermore, in the higher luminosity data the disc variability below 0.6 keV becomes incoherent with the power-law and higher energy disc emission at frequencies below 0.5 Hz, in contrast with the coherent variations seen in the 2006 data. We explain these differences and the associated complex lags in the 2009 data in terms of the fluctuating disc model, where the increase in accretion rate seen in 2009 leads to more pronounced and extended disc emission. If the variable signals are generated at small radii in the disc, the variability of disc emission can be naturally suppressed by the fraction of unmodulated disc emission arising from larger radii

  4. Chaotic and stochastic processes in the accretion flows of the black hole X-ray binaries revealed by recurrence analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suková, Petra; Grzedzielski, Mikolaj; Janiuk, Agnieszka

    2016-02-01

    Aims: Both the well known microquasar GRS 1915+105, as well as its recently discovered analogue, IGR J17091-3624, exhibit variability that is characteristic of a deterministic chaotic system. Their specific kind of quasi-periodic flares that are observed in some states is intrinsically connected with the global structure of the accretion flow, which are governed by the nonlinear hydrodynamics. One plausible mechanism that is proposed to explain this kind of variability is the thermal-viscous instability that operates in the accretion disk. The purely stochastic variability that occurs because of turbulent conditions in the plasma, is quantified by the power density spectra and appears in practically all types of sources and their spectral states. Methods: We pose a question as to whether these two microquasars are one of a kind, or if the traces of deterministic chaos, and hence the accretion disk instability, may also be hidden in the observed variability of other sources. We focus on the black hole X-ray binaries that accrete at a high rate and are, therefore, theoretically prone to the development of radiation pressure-induced instability. To study the nonlinear behaviour of the X-ray sources and distinguish between the chaotic and stochastic nature of their emission, we propose a novel method, which is based on recurrence analysis. Widely known in other fields of physics, this powerful method is used here for the first time in an astrophysical context. We estimate the indications of deterministic chaos quantitatively, such as the Rényi's entropy for the observed time series, and we compare them with surrogate data. Results: Using the observational data collected by the RXTE satellite, we reveal the oscillations pattern and the observable properties of six black hole systems. For five of them, we confirm the signatures of deterministic chaos being the driver of their observed variability. Conclusions: We test the method and confirm the deterministic nature of

  5. X-ray Insights into the Nature of PHL 1811 Analogs and Weak Emission-line Quasars: Unification with a Geometrically Thick Accretion Disk?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, B.; Brandt, W. N.; Hall, P. B.; Wu, Jianfeng; Anderson, S. F.; Garmire, G. P.; Gibson, R. R.; Plotkin, R. M.; Richards, G. T.; Schneider, D. P.; Shemmer, O.; Shen, Yue

    2015-06-01

    We present an X-ray and multiwavelength study of 33 weak emission-line quasars (WLQs) and 18 quasars that are analogs of the extreme WLQ, PHL 1811, at z≈ 0.5-2.9. New Chandra 1.5-9.5 ks exploratory observations were obtained for 32 objects while the others have archival X-ray observations. Significant fractions of these luminous type 1 quasars are distinctly X-ray weak compared to typical quasars, including 16 (48%) of the WLQs and 17 (94%) of the PHL 1811 analogs with average X-ray weakness factors of 17 and 39, respectively. We measure a relatively hard ({Γ }=1.16-0.32+0.37) effective power-law photon index for a stack of the X-ray weak subsample, suggesting X-ray absorption, and spectral analysis of one PHL 1811 analog, J1521+5202, also indicates significant intrinsic X-ray absorption. We compare composite Sloan Digital Sky Survey spectra for the X-ray weak and X-ray normal populations and find several optical-UV tracers of X-ray weakness, e.g., Fe ii rest-frame equivalent width (REW) and relative color. We describe how orientation effects under our previously proposed “shielding-gas” scenario can likely unify the X-ray weak and X-ray normal populations. We suggest that the shielding gas may naturally be understood as a geometrically thick inner accretion disk that shields the broad line region from the ionizing continuum. If WLQs and PHL 1811 analogs have very high Eddington ratios, the inner disk could be significantly puffed up (e.g., a slim disk). Shielding of the broad emission-line region by a geometrically thick disk may have a significant role in setting the broad distributions of C iv REW and blueshift for quasars more generally.

  6. Long-term timing and glitch characteristics of anomalous X-ray pulsar 1RXS J170849.0–400910

    SciTech Connect

    Muş, Sinem Şaşmaz; Göğüş, Ersin

    2013-12-01

    We present the results of our detailed timing studies of an anomalous X-ray pulsar, 1RXS J170849.0–400910, using Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) observations spanning over ∼6 yr from 2005 until the end of the RXTE mission. We constructed the long-term spin characteristics of the source and investigated the time and energy dependence of the pulse profile and pulsed count rates. We find that the pulse profile and pulsed count rates in the 2-10 keV band do not show any significant variations in ∼6 yr. 1RXS J170849.0–400910 has been the most frequently glitching anomalous X-ray pulsar: three spin-up glitches and three candidate glitches were observed prior to 2005. Our extensive search for glitches later in the timeline resulted in no unambiguous glitches, though we identified two glitch candidates (with Δν/ν ∼ 10{sup –6}) in two data gaps: a strong candidate around MJD 55532 and another one around MJD 54819, which is slightly less robust. We discuss our results in the context of pulsar glitch models and expectancy of glitches within the vortex unpinning model.

  7. X-ray variability of SS 433: Evidence for supercritical accretion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atapin, K. E.; Fabrika, S. N.

    2016-08-01

    We study the X-ray variability of SS 433 based on data from the ASCA observatory and the MAXI and RXTE/ASM monitoring missions. Based on the ASCA data, we have constructed the power spectrum of SS 433 in the frequency range from 10-6 to 0.1 Hz, which confirms the presence of a flat portion in the spectrum at frequencies 3 × 10-5-10-3 Hz. The periodic variability (precession, nutation, eclipses) begins to dominate significantly over the stochastic variability at lower frequencies, which does not allow the stochastic variability to be studied reliably. The model in which the flat portion extends to 9.5 × 10-6 Hz, while a power-law rise with an index of 2.6 occurs below provides the best agreement with the observations. The nutational oscillations of the jets with a period of about three days suggests that the time for the passage of material through the disk is less than this value. At frequencies below 4 × 10-6 Hz, the shape of the power spectrum probably does not reflect the disk structure but is determined by external factors, for example, by a change in the amount of material supplied by the donor. The flat portion can arise from a rapid decrease in the viscous time in the supercritical or radiative disk zones. The flat spectrum is associated with the variability of the X-ray jets that are formed in the supercritical disk region.

  8. The Peculiar Galactic Center Neutron Star X-Ray Binary XMM J174457-2850.3

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Degenaar, N.; Wijnands, R.; Reynolds, M. T.; Miller, J. M.; Altamirano, D.; Kennea, J.; Gehrels, N.; Haggard, D.; Ponti, G.

    2014-01-01

    The recent discovery of a milli-second radio pulsar experiencing an accretion outburst similar to those seen in low mass X-ray binaries, has opened up a new opportunity to investigate the evolutionary link between these two different neutron star manifestations. The remarkable X-ray variability and hard X-ray spectrum of this object can potentially serve as a template to search for other X-ray binary radio pulsar transitional objects. Here we demonstrate that the transient X-ray source XMM J174457-2850.3 near the Galactic center displays similar X-ray properties. We report on the detection of an energetic thermonuclear burst with an estimated duration of 2 hr and a radiated energy output of 5E40 erg, which unambiguously demonstrates that the source harbors an accreting neutron star. It has a quiescent X-ray luminosity of Lx5E32 ergs and exhibits occasional accretion outbursts during which it brightens to Lx1E35-1E36 ergs for a few weeks (2-10 keV). However, the source often lingers in between outburst and quiescence at Lx1E33-1E34 ergs. This unusual X-ray flux behavior and its relatively hard X-ray spectrum, a power law with an index of 1.4, could possibly be explained in terms of the interaction between the accretion flow and the magnetic field of the neutron star.

  9. THE LONGEST TIMESCALE X-RAY VARIABILITY REVEALS EVIDENCE FOR ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI IN THE HIGH ACCRETION STATE

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang Youhong

    2011-01-01

    The All Sky Monitor (ASM) on board the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer has continuously monitored a number of active galactic nuclei (AGNs) with similar sampling rates for 14 years, from 1996 January to 2009 December. Utilizing the archival ASM data of 27 AGNs, we calculate the normalized excess variances of the 300-day binned X-ray light curves on the longest timescale (between 300 days and 14 years) explored so far. The observed variance appears to be independent of AGN black-hole mass and bolometric luminosity. According to the scaling relation of black-hole mass (and bolometric luminosity) from galactic black hole X-ray binaries (GBHs) to AGNs, the break timescales that correspond to the break frequencies detected in the power spectral density (PSD) of our AGNs are larger than the binsize (300 days) of the ASM light curves. As a result, the singly broken power-law (soft-state) PSD predicts the variance to be independent of mass and luminosity. Nevertheless, the doubly broken power-law (hard-state) PSD predicts, with the widely accepted ratio of the two break frequencies, that the variance increases with increasing mass and decreases with increasing luminosity. Therefore, the independence of the observed variance on mass and luminosity suggests that AGNs should have soft-state PSDs. Taking into account the scaling of the break timescale with mass and luminosity synchronously, the observed variances are also more consistent with the soft-state than the hard-state PSD predictions. With the averaged variance of AGNs and the soft-state PSD assumption, we obtain a universal PSD amplitude of 0.030 {+-} 0.022. By analogy with the GBH PSDs in the high/soft state, the longest timescale variability supports the standpoint that AGNs are scaled-up GBHs in the high accretion state, as already implied by the direct PSD analysis.

  10. On different types of instabilities in black hole accretion discs: implications for X-ray binaries and active galactic nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Janiuk, Agnieszka; Czerny, Bożena

    2011-07-01

    We discuss two important instability mechanisms that may lead to the limit-cycle oscillations of the luminosity of the accretion discs around compact objects: ionization instability and radiation pressure instability. Ionization instability is well established as a mechanism of X-ray novae eruptions in black hole binary systems, but its applicability to active galactic nuclei (AGN) is still problematic. Radiation pressure theory has still a very weak observational background in any of these sources. In this paper, we attempt to confront the parameter space of these instabilities with the observational data. At the basis of this simple survey of sources properties, we argue that the radiation pressure instability is likely to be present in several Galactic sources with the Eddington ratios being above 0.15 and in AGN with the Eddington ratio above 0.025. Our results favour the parametrization of the viscosity through the geometrical mean of the radiation and gas pressure in both Galactic sources and AGN. More examples of the quasi-regular outbursts in the time-scales of 100 s in Galactic sources and hundreds of years in AGN are needed to formulate firm conclusions. We also show that the disc sizes in the X-ray novae are consistent with the ionization instability. This instability may also considerably influence the lifetime cycle and overall complexity in the supermassive black hole environment.

  11. Discovery of a 105-ms X-ray Pulsar in Kesteven-79: On the Nature of Compact Central Objects in Supernova Remnants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gotthelf, E. V.; Halpern, J. P.; Seward, F. D.

    2005-01-01

    We report the discovery of 105-ms X-ray pulsations from the compact central object (CCO) in the supernova remnant \\snr\\ using data acquired with the {\\it Newton X-Ray Multi-Mirror Mission). Using two observations of the pulsar taken 6-days apart we derive an upper limit on its spin-down rate of $\\dot P < 9 \\times 10"{-14}$-s-${-l)$,a nd find no evidence for binary orbital motion. The implied energy loss rate is $\\dot E < 3 \\times 10A{36)$-ergs-s$A{-1)$, polar magnetic field strength is $B-{\\rm p) < 3 \\times 10A{12)$-G, and spin-down age is $\\tau > 18.5$-kyr. The latter exceeds the remnant's estimated age, suggesting that the pulsar was born spinning near its current period. The X-ray spectrum of \\psr\\ is best characterized as a blackbody of temperature $kT {BB) =, 0.43\\pm0.02$ keV, radius $R-{BB) \\approx 1.3$-km, and $I{\\rm bol) = 5.2 \\times 10A{33)$ ergs-sSA{-1)$ at $d = 7.1$-kpc. The sinusoidal light curve is modulated with a pulsed fraction of $>45\\%$, suggestive of a small hot spot on the surface of the rotating neutron star. The lack of a discernible pulsar wind nebula is consistent with an interpretation of \\psr\\ as a rotation-powered pulsar whose spin-down luminosity falls below the empirical threshold for generating bright wind nebulae, $\\dot E-{\\rm c) = 4 \\times 10A{36)$-ergs-sSA{-I)$. The age discrepancy suggests that its $\\dot E$ has always been below $\\dot E c$, perhaps a distinguishing property of the CCOs. Alternatively, the X-ray spectrum of \\psr\\ suggests a low-luminosity AXP, but the weak inferred $B-{\\rm p)$ field is incompatible with a magnetar theory of its X-ray luminosity. The ordinary spin parameters discovered from \\psr\\ highlight the inability of existing theories to explain the high luminosities and temperatures of CCO thermal X-ray spectra.

  12. The relative and absolute timing accuracy of the EPIC-pn camera on XMM-Newton, from X-ray pulsations of the Crab and other pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin-Carrillo, A.; Kirsch, M. G. F.; Caballero, I.; Freyberg, M. J.; Ibarra, A.; Kendziorra, E.; Lammers, U.; Mukerjee, K.; Schönherr, G.; Stuhlinger, M.; Saxton, R. D.; Staubert, R.; Suchy, S.; Wellbrock, A.; Webb, N.; Guainazzi, M.

    2012-09-01

    Aims: Reliable timing calibration is essential for the accurate comparison of XMM-Newton light curves with those from other observatories, to ultimately use them to derive precise physical quantities. The XMM-Newton timing calibration is based on pulsar analysis. However, because pulsars show both timing noise and glitches, it is essential to monitor these calibration sources regularly. To this end, the XMM-Newton observatory performs observations twice a year of the Crab pulsar to monitor the absolute timing accuracy of the EPIC-pn camera in the fast timing and burst modes. We present the results of this monitoring campaign, comparing XMM-Newton data from the Crab pulsar (PSR B0531+21) with radio measurements. In addition, we use five pulsars (PSR J0537-69, PSR B0540-69, PSR B0833-45, PSR B1509-58, and PSR B1055-52) with periods ranging from 16 ms to 197 ms to verify the relative timing accuracy. Methods: We analysed 38 XMM-Newton observations (0.2-12.0 keV) of the Crab taken over the first ten years of the mission and 13 observations from the five complementary pulsars. All data were processed with SAS, the XMM-Newton Scientific Analysis Software, version 9.0. Epoch-folding techniques coupled with χ2 tests were used to derive relative timing accuracies. The absolute timing accuracy was determined using the Crab data and comparing the time shift between the main X-ray and radio peaks in the phase-folded light curves. Results: The relative timing accuracy of XMM-Newton is found to be better than 10-8. The strongest X-ray pulse peak precedes the corresponding radio peak by 306 ± 9 μs, which agrees with other high-energy observatories such as Chandra, INTEGRAL and RXTE. The derived absolute timing accuracy from our analysis is ± 48 μs.

  13. X-ray measurement of the spin-down of CalverA: A radio- and gamma-ray-quiet pulsar

    SciTech Connect

    Halpern, J. P.; Bogdanov, S.; Gotthelf, E. V.

    2013-12-01

    We measure spin-down of the 59 ms X-ray pulsar Calvera by comparing the XMM-Newton discovery data from 2009 with new Chandra timing observations taken in 2013. Its period derivative is P-dot =(3.19± 0.08)×10{sup −15}, which corresponds to spin-down luminosity E-dot =6.1×10{sup 35} erg s{sup –1}, characteristic age τ{sub c}≡P/2 P-dot =2.9×10{sup 5} yr, and surface dipole magnetic field strength B{sub s} = 4.4 × 10{sup 11} G. These values rule out a mildly recycled pulsar, but Calvera could be an orphaned central compact object (anti-magnetar), with a magnetic field that was initially buried by supernova debris and is now reemerging and approaching normal strength. We also performed unsuccessful searches for high-energy γ-rays from Calvera in both imaging and timing of >100 MeV Fermi photons. Even though the distance to Calvera is uncertain by an order of magnitude, an upper limit of d < 2 kpc inferred from X-ray spectra implies a γ-ray luminosity limit of <3.3 × 10{sup 32} erg s{sup –1}, which is less than that of any pulsar of comparable E-dot . Calvera shares some properties with PSR J1740+1000, a young radio pulsar that we show by virtue of its lack of proper motion was born outside of the Galactic disk. As an energetic, high-Galactic-latitude pulsar, Calvera is unique in being undetected in both radio and γ-rays to faint limits, which should place interesting constraints on models for particle acceleration and beam patterns in pulsar magnetospheres.

  14. Identification of HESS J1303-631 as a pulsar wind nebula through γ-ray, X-ray, and radio observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    H.E.S.S. Collaboration; Abramowski, A.; Acero, F.; Aharonian, F.; Akhperjanian, A. G.; Anton, G.; Balenderan, S.; Balzer, A.; Barnacka, A.; Becherini, Y.; Becker, J.; Bernlöhr, K.; Birsin, E.; Biteau, J.; Bochow, A.; Boisson, C.; Bolmont, J.; Bordas, P.; Brucker, J.; Brun, F.; Brun, P.; Bulik, T.; Büsching, I.; Carrigan, S.; Casanova, S.; Cerruti, M.; Chadwick, P. M.; Charbonnier, A.; Chaves, R. C. G.; Cheesebrough, A.; Cologna, G.; Conrad, J.; Couturier, C.; Dalton, M.; Daniel, M. K.; Davids, I. D.; Degrange, B.; Deil, C.; Dickinson, H. J.; Djannati-Ataï, A.; Domainko, W.; Drury, L. O'C.; Dubus, G.; Dutson, K.; Dyks, J.; Dyrda, M.; Egberts, K.; Eger, P.; Espigat, P.; Fallon, L.; Farnier, C.; Fegan, S.; Feinstein, F.; Fernandes, M. V.; Fiasson, A.; Fontaine, G.; Förster, A.; Füßling, M.; Gajdus, M.; Gallant, Y. A.; Garrigoux, T.; Gast, H.; Gérard, L.; Giebels, B.; Glicenstein, J. F.; Glück, B.; Göring, D.; Grondin, M.-H.; Häffner, S.; Hague, J. D.; Hahn, J.; Hampf, D.; Harris, J.; Hauser, M.; Heinz, S.; Heinzelmann, G.; Henri, G.; Hermann, G.; Hillert, A.; Hinton, J. A.; Hofmann, W.; Hofverberg, P.; Holler, M.; Horns, D.; Jacholkowska, A.; Jahn, C.; Jamrozy, M.; Jung, I.; Kastendieck, M. A.; Katarzyński, K.; Katz, U.; Kaufmann, S.; Khélifi, B.; Klochkov, D.; Kluźniak, W.; Kneiske, T.; Komin, Nu.; Kosack, K.; Kossakowski, R.; Krayzel, F.; Laffon, H.; Lamanna, G.; Lenain, J.-P.; Lennarz, D.; Lohse, T.; Lopatin, A.; Lu, C.-C.; Marandon, V.; Marcowith, A.; Masbou, J.; Maurin, G.; Maxted, N.; Mayer, M.; McComb, T. J. L.; Medina, M. C.; Méhault, J.; Menzler, U.; Moderski, R.; Mohamed, M.; Moulin, E.; Naumann, C. L.; Naumann-Godo, M.; de Naurois, M.; Nedbal, D.; Nekrassov, D.; Nguyen, N.; Nicholas, B.; Niemiec, J.; Nolan, S. J.; Ohm, S.; de Oña Wilhelmi, E.; Opitz, B.; Ostrowski, M.; Oya, I.; Panter, M.; Paz Arribas, M.; Pekeur, N. W.; Pelletier, G.; Perez, J.; Petrucci, P.-O.; Peyaud, B.; Pita, S.; Pühlhofer, G.; Punch, M.; Quirrenbach, A.; Raue, M.; Reimer, A.; Reimer, O.; Renaud, M.; de los Reyes, R.; Rieger, F.; Ripken, J.; Rob, L.; Rosier-Lees, S.; Rowell, G.; Rudak, B.; Rulten, C. B.; Sahakian, V.; Sanchez, D. A.; Santangelo, A.; Schlickeiser, R.; Schulz, A.; Schwanke, U.; Schwarzburg, S.; Schwemmer, S.; Sheidaei, F.; Skilton, J. L.; Sol, H.; Spengler, G.; Stawarz, Ł.; Steenkamp, R.; Stegmann, C.; Stinzing, F.; Stycz, K.; Sushch, I.; Szostek, A.; Tavernet, J.-P.; Terrier, R.; Tluczykont, M.; Valerius, K.; van Eldik, C.; Vasileiadis, G.; Venter, C.; Viana, A.; Vincent, P.; Völk, H. J.; Volpe, F.; Vorobiov, S.; Vorster, M.; Wagner, S. J.; Ward, M.; White, R.; Wierzcholska, A.; Zacharias, M.; Zajczyk, A.; Zdziarski, A. A.; Zech, A.; Zechlin, H.-S.

    2012-12-01

    Aims: The previously unidentified very high-energy (VHE; E > 100 GeV) γ-ray source HESS J1303-631, discovered in 2004, is re-examined including new data from the H.E.S.S. Cherenkov telescope array in order to identify this object. Archival data from the XMM-Newton X-ray satellite and from the PMN radio survey are also examined. Methods: Detailed morphological and spectral studies of VHE γ-ray emission as well as of the XMM-Newton X-ray data are performed. Radio data from the PMN survey are used as well to construct a leptonic model of the source. The γ-ray and X-ray spectra and radio upper limit are used to construct a one zone leptonic model of the spectral energy distribution (SED). Results: Significant energy-dependent morphology of the γ-ray source is detected with high-energy emission (E > 10 TeV) positionally coincident with the pulsar PSR J1301-6305 and lower energy emission (E < 2 TeV) extending 0.4° to the southeast of the pulsar. The spectrum of the VHE source can be described with a power-law with an exponential cut-off N0 = (5.6 ± 0.5) × 10-12 TeV-1 cm-2 s-1, Γ = 1.5 ± 0.2) and Ecut = (7.7 ± 2.2) TeV. The pulsar wind nebula (PWN) is also detected in X-rays, extending 2-3' from the pulsar position towards the center of the γ-ray emission region. A potential radio counterpart from the PMN survey is also discussed, showing a hint for a counterpart at the edge of the X-ray PWN trail and is taken as an upper limit in the SED. The extended X-ray PWN has an unabsorbed flux of F_2{-10 keV ˜ 1.6+0.2-0.4× 10-13 erg cm-2 s-1} and is detected at a significance of 6.5σ. The SED is well described by a one zone leptonic scenario which, with its associated caveats, predicts a very low average magnetic field for this source. Conclusions: Significant energy-dependent morphology of this source, as well as the identification of an associated X-ray PWN from XMM-Newton observations enable identification of the VHE source as an evolved PWN associated to the

  15. The Accreting Black Hole Swift J1753.5-0127 from Radio to Hard X-Ray

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tomsick, John A.; Rahoui, Farid; Kolehmainen, Mari; Miller-Jones, James; Fürst, Felix; Yamaoka, Kazutaka; Akitaya, Hiroshi; Corbel, Stéphane; Coriat, Mickael; Done, Chris; Gandhi, Poshak; Harrison, Fiona A.; Huang, Kuiyun; Kaaret, Philip; Kalemci, Emrah; Kanda, Yuka; Migliari, Simone; Miller, Jon M.; Moritani, Yuki; Stern, Daniel; Uemura, Makoto; Urata, Yuji

    2015-07-01

    We report on multiwavelength measurements of the accreting black hole Swift J1753.5-0127 in the hard state at low luminosity (L ˜ 2.7 × 1036 erg s-1 assuming a distance of d = 3 kpc) in 2014 April. The radio emission is optically thick synchrotron, presumably from a compact jet. We take advantage of the low extinction (E(B-V)=0.45 from earlier work) and model the near-IR to UV emission with a multitemperature disk model. Assuming a black hole mass of MBH = 5 M⊙ and a system inclination of i = 40°, the fits imply an inner radius for the disk of Rin/Rg > 212d3(MBH/5 M⊙)-1, where Rg is the gravitational radius of the black hole and d3 is the distance to the source in units of 3 kpc. The outer radius is Rout/Rg=90,000 d3(MBH/5 M⊙)-1, which corresponds to 6.6 × 1010 d3 cm, consistent with the expected size of the disk given previous measurements of the size of the companion's Roche lobe. The 0.5-240 keV energy spectrum measured by Swift/X-ray Telescope (XRT), Suzaku (XIS, PIN, and GSO), and Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array is relatively well characterized by an absorbed power law with a photon index of Γ = 1.722 ± 0.003 (90% confidence error), but a significant improvement is seen when a second continuum component is added. Reflection is a possibility, but no iron line is detected, implying a low iron abundance. We are able to fit the entire (radio to 240 keV) spectral energy distribution (SED) with a multitemperature disk component, a Comptonization component, and a broken power law, representing the emission from the compact jet. The broken power law cannot significantly contribute to the soft X-ray emission, and this may be related to why Swift J1753.5-0127 is an outlier in the radio/X-ray correlation. The broken power law (i.e., the jet) might dominate above 20 keV, which would constrain the break frequency to be between 2.4 × 1010 and 3.6 × 1012 Hz. Although the fits to the full SED do not include significant thermal emission in the X-ray band

  16. EXOSAT guest observer program. Binary parameters of the X-ray Pulsar 4U1626-67

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcclintock, Jeffrey E.

    1987-01-01

    The pulsing X-ray source 4U1626-67 is an accreting neutron star in a binary system with a very low mass companion. The source was observed with EXOSAT continuously for 23 hr on 30 to 31 March 1986 UT. These observations allowed the setting of a stringent upper limit on the projected semimajor axis of the orbit of the neutron star of approx. 10 light msec for the 2485-s orbital period found by Middleditch et al., and a limit of approx. 13 light msec for any other plausible orbital period. The corresponding upper limit on the mass function for the 2485-s orbital period is 1.3 x 0.000001 solar mass. It was concluded that if the orbital inclination angle, i, equals 90 deg, then the optical companion star has a mass greater than 0.02 solar mass. However, it was found that a companion star mass greater than 0.06 solar mass is required if gravitational radiation is responsible for driving the mass transfer in this system. Only for i less than 16 deg can a companion star mass this large be accommodated by the limits set on the orbital amplitude. Also presented are results on the flaring activity in 4U1626-67 on time scales of approx. 1000 s, the energy dependent pulse profiles, and the pulse period history over the past decade.

  17. The 2006-2007 Active Phase of Anomalous X-Ray Pulsar 4U 0142+61: Radiative and Timing Changes, Bursts,and Burst Spectral Features

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gavriil, Fotis P.; Dib, Rim; Kaspi, Victoria M.

    2011-01-01

    After at least 6 years of quiescence, Anomalous X-ray Pulsar (AXP) 4U 0142+61 entered an active phase in 2006 March that lasted several months and included six X-ray bursts as well as many changes in the persistent X-ray emission. The bursts, the first seen from this AXP in > 11 years of Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer monitoring, all occurred in the interval between 2006 April 6 and 2007 February 7. The burst durations ranged from 0.4 - 1.8 x 10(exp 3) s. The first five burst spectra are well modeled by blackbodies, with temperatures kT approx 2 - 9 keV. However, the sixth burst had a complicated spectrum that is well characterized by a blackbody plus two emission features whose amplitude varied throughout the burst. The most prominent feature was at 14.0 keV. Upon entry into the active phase the pulsar showed a significant change in pulse morphology and a likely timing glitch. The glitch had a total frequency jump of (1.9+/-0.4) x 10(exp -7) Hz, which recovered with a decay time of 17+/-2 days by more than the initial jump, implying a net spin-down of the pulsar. Within the framework of the magnetar model, the net spin-down of the star could be explained by regions of the superfluid that rotate. slower than the rest. The bursts, flux enhancements, and pulse morphology changes can be explained as arising from crustal deformations due to stresses imposed by the highly twisted internal magnetic field. However, unlike other AXP outbursts, we cannot account for a major twist being implanted in the magnetosphere.

  18. XMM-Newton observations of UW CrB: detection of X-ray bursts and evidence for accretion disc evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hakala, Pasi; Ramsay, Gavin; Muhli, Panu; Charles, Phil; Hannikainen, Diana; Mukai, Koji; Vilhu, Osmi

    2005-01-01

    UW CrB (MS 1603+2600) is a peculiar short-period X-ray binary that exhibits extraordinary optical behaviour. The shape of the optical light curve of the system changes drastically from night to night, without any changes in overall brightness. Here we report X-ray observations of UW CrB obtained with XMM-Newton. We find evidence for several X-ray bursts, confirming a neutron star primary. This considerably strengthens the case that UW CrB is an accretion disc corona system located at a distance of at least 5-7 kpc (3-5 kpc above the Galactic plane). The X-ray and Optical Monitor (ultraviolet-optical) light curves show remarkable shape variation from one observing run to another, which we suggest are due to large-scale variations in the accretion disc shape resulting from a warp that periodically obscures the optical and soft X-ray emission. This is also supported by the changes in phase-resolved X-ray spectra.

  19. VizieR Online Data Catalog: ATNF Pulsar Catalogue (Manchester+, 2005)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manchester, R. N.; Hobbs, G. B.; Teoh, A.; Hobbs, M.

    2016-05-01

    The catalogue is a compilation of the principal observed parameters of pulsars, including positions, timing parameters, pulse widths, flux densities, proper motions, distances, and dispersion, rotation, and scattering measures. It also lists the orbital elements of binary pulsars, and some commonly used parameters derived from the basic measurements. The catalogue includes all published rotation-powered pulsars, including those detected only at high energies. It also includes Anomalous X-ray Pulsars (AXPs) and Soft Gamma-ray Repeaters (SGRs) for which coherent pulsations have been detected. However, it excludes accretion-powered pulsars such as Her X-1 and the recently discovered X-ray millisecond pulsars. (2 data files).

  20. IMPLICATIONS OF BURST OSCILLATIONS FROM THE SLOWLY ROTATING ACCRETING PULSAR IGR J17480-2446 IN THE GLOBULAR CLUSTER TERZAN 5

    SciTech Connect

    Cavecchi, Y.; Patruno, A.; Haskell, B.; Watts, A. L.; Altamirano, D.; Wijnands, R.; Van der Klis, M.; Levin, Y.; Linares, M.

    2011-10-10

    The recently discovered accreting X-ray pulsar IGR J17480-2446 spins at a frequency of {approx}11 Hz. We show that Type I X-ray bursts from this source display oscillations at the same frequency as the stellar spin. IGR J17480-2446 is the first secure case of a slowly rotating neutron star (NS) which shows Type I burst oscillations (BOs), all other sources featuring such oscillations spin at hundreds of Hertz. This means that we can test BO models in a completely different regime. We explore the origin of Type I BOs in IGR J17480-2446 and conclude that they are not caused by global modes in the NS ocean. We also show that the Coriolis force is not able to confine an oscillation-producing hot spot on the stellar surface. The most likely scenario is that the BOs are produced by a hot spot confined by hydromagnetic stresses.

  1. An X-ray Pulsar with a Superstrong Magnetic Field in the Soft Gamma-Ray Repeater SGR1806-20

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kouveliotou, C.; Dieters, S.; Strohmayer, T.; vanParadijs, J.; Fishman, G. J.; Meegan, C. A.; Hurley, K.; Kommers, J.; Smith, I.; Frail, D.; Murakami, T.

    1998-01-01

    Soft gamma-ray repeaters (SGRs) emit multiple, brief (approximately O.1 s) intense outbursts of low-energy gamma-rays. They are extremely rare; three are known in our galaxy and one in the Large Magellanic Cloud. Two SGRs are associated with young supernova remnants (SNRs), and therefore most probably with neutron stars, but it remains a puzzle why SGRs are so different from 'normal' radio pulsars. Here we report the discovery of pulsations in the persistent X-ray flux of SGR1806-20, with a period of 7.47 s and a spindown rate of 2.6 x 10(exp -3) s/yr. We argue that the spindown is due to magnetic dipole emission and find that the pulsar age and (dipolar) magnetic field strength are approximately 1500 years and 8 x 10(exp 14) gauss, respectively. Our observations demonstrate the existence of 'magnetars', neutron stars with magnetic fields about 100 times stronger than those of radio pulsars, and support earlier suggestions that SGR bursts are caused by neutron-star 'crust-quakes' produced by magnetic stresses. The 'magnetar' birth rate is about one per millenium, a substantial fraction of that of radio pulsars. Thus our results may explain why some SNRs have no radio pulsars.

  2. Variations of cyclotron line energy with luminosity in accreting X-ray pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Nishimura, Osamu

    2014-01-20

    I develop a new model for changes of cyclotron line energy with luminosity based on changes in polar cap dimensions and the direction of photon propagation as well as a shock height. In X0115+63 and V0332+53, the fundamental cyclotron line energy has been observed to decrease with increasing luminosity. This phenomenon has been interpreted as a change of a shock height with luminosity. However, the rates of the observed changes are quite different, in which the line energy in V0332+53 varies slowly with luminosity compared with that in X0115+63. I demonstrate that a new model successfully reproduces the changes of the fundamental cyclotron line energies with luminosity in both X0115+63 and V0332+53. On the other hand, the cyclotron line energies in Her X–1, GX301–2, and GX304–1 were reported to increase with increasing luminosity. I discuss the positive correlation between the cyclotron line energy and luminosity based on changes in a beam pattern for Her X–1, GX301–2, and GX304–1. In addition, I discuss how a switch of the predominant, observed emission region from pole1 to pole2 influences cyclotron line energy for GX304–1 and A0535+26.

  3. X-RAY OBSERVATIONS OF THE SUPERNOVA REMNANT CTB 87 (G74.9+1.2): AN EVOLVED PULSAR WIND NEBULA

    SciTech Connect

    Matheson, H.; Safi-Harb, S.; Kothes, R. E-mail: samar@physics.umanitoba.ca

    2013-09-01

    Pulsar wind nebulae (PWNe) studies with the Chandra X-Ray Observatory have opened a new window to address the physics of pulsar winds, zoom on their interaction with their hosting supernova remnant (SNR) and interstellar medium, and identify their powering engines. We here present a new 70 ks, plus an archived 18 ks, Chandra ACIS observation of the SNR CTB 87 (G74.9+1.2), classified as a PWN with unusual radio properties and poorly studied in X-rays. We find that the peak of the X-ray emission is clearly offset from the peak of the radio emission by {approx}100'' and located at the southeastern edge of the radio nebula. We detect a point source-the putative pulsar-at the peak of the X-ray emission and study its spectrum separately from the PWN. This new point source, CXOU J201609.2+371110, is surrounded by a compact nebula displaying a torus-like structure and possibly a jet. A more extended diffuse nebula is offset from the radio nebula, extending from the point source to the northwest for {approx}250''. The spectra of the point source, compact nebula, and extended diffuse nebula are all well described by a power-law model with a photon index of 1.1 (0.7-1.6), 1.2 (0.9-1.4), and 1.7 (1.5-1.8), respectively, for a column density N{sub H} = 1.38 (1.21-1.57) Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 22} cm{sup -2} (90% confidence). The total X-ray luminosity of the source is {approx}1.6 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 34} erg s{sup -1} at an assumed distance of 6.1 kpc, with {approx}2% and 6% contribution from the point source and compact nebula, respectively. The observed properties suggest that CTB 87 is an evolved ({approx}5-28 kyr) PWN, with the extended radio emission likely a ''relic'' PWN, as in Vela-X and G327.1-1.1. To date, however, there is no evidence for thermal X-ray emission from this SNR, and the SNR shell is still missing, suggesting expansion into a low-density medium (n{sub 0} < 0.2 D{sup -1/2}{sub 6.1} cm{sup -3}), likely caused by a stellar wind bubble blown by the

  4. Reprocessing of Soft X-ray Emission Lines in Black Hole Accretion Disks

    SciTech Connect

    Mauche, C W; Liedahl, D A; Mathiesen, B F; Jimenez-Garate, M A; Raymond, J C

    2003-10-17

    By means of a Monte Carlo code that accounts for Compton scattering and photoabsorption followed by recombination, we have investigated the radiation transfer of Ly{alpha}, He{alpha}, and recombination continua photons of H- and He-like C, N, O, and Ne produced in the photoionized atmosphere of a relativistic black hole accretion disk. We find that photoelectric opacity causes significant attenuation of photons with energies above the O VIII K-edge; that the conversion efficiencies of these photons into lower-energy lines and recombination continua are high; and that accounting for this reprocessing significantly (by factors of 21% to 105%) increases the flux of the Ly{alpha} and He{alpha} emission lines of H- and He-like C and O escaping the disk atmosphere.

  5. Birth of millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grindlay, J. E.; Bailyn, C. D.

    1988-01-01

    It is argued here that accretion-induced collapse of white dwarfs in binaries can form millisecond pulsars directly without requiring a precursor low-mass X-ray binary stage. Ablation of the precollapse binary companion by the millisecond pulsar's radiation field, a process invoked to explain some of the characteristics of the recently discovered eclipsing millisecond pulsar, can then yield isolated neutron stars witout requiring an additional stellar encounter.

  6. X-ray Reflected Spectra from Accretion Disk Models. III. A Complete Grid of Ionized Reflection Calculations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Garcia, J.; Dauser, T.; Reynolds, C. S.; Kallman, T. R.; McClintock, J. E.; Wilms, J.; Ekmann, W.

    2013-01-01

    We present a new and complete library of synthetic spectra for modeling the component of emission that is reflected from an illuminated accretion disk. The spectra were computed using an updated version of our code xillver that incorporates new routines and