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Ejector and propeller spin-down: How might a superluminous supernova millisecond magnetar become the 6.67 h pulsar in RCW 103

Ejector and propeller spin-down: How might a superluminous supernova millisecond magnetar become the 6.67 h pulsar in RCW 103
Ejector and propeller spin-down: How might a superluminous supernova millisecond magnetar become the 6.67 h pulsar in RCW 103
The X-ray source 1E 161348-5055 in the supernova remnant RCW 103 recently exhibited X-ray activity typical of magnetars, i.e. neutron stars with magnetic fields > 1014 - 1015 G. However, 1E 161348-5055 has an observed period of 6.67 hr, in contrast to magnetars which have a spin period of seconds. Here we describe a simple model which can explain the spin evolution of 1E 161348-5055, as well as other magnetars, from an initial period of milliseconds that would be required for dynamo generation of magnetar-strength magnetic fields. We propose that the key difference between 1E 161348-5055 and other magnetars is the persistence of a remnant disk of small total mass. This disk caused 1E 161348-5055 to undergo ejector and propeller phases in its life, during which strong torques caused a rapid increase of its spin period. By matching its observed spin period and ~ 1-3 kyr age, we find that 1E 161348-5055 has the (slightly) highest magnetic field of all known magnetars, with B ~ 5 x 1015 G, and that its disk had a mass of ~ 1024 g, comparable to that of the asteroid Ceres.
1745-3925
L65-L69
Ho, Wynn C.G.
d78d4c52-8f92-4846-876f-e04a8f803a45
Andersson, Nils
2dd6d1ee-cefd-478a-b1ac-e6feedafe304
Ho, Wynn C.G.
d78d4c52-8f92-4846-876f-e04a8f803a45
Andersson, Nils
2dd6d1ee-cefd-478a-b1ac-e6feedafe304

Ho, Wynn C.G. and Andersson, Nils (2016) Ejector and propeller spin-down: How might a superluminous supernova millisecond magnetar become the 6.67 h pulsar in RCW 103. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters, 464 (1), L65-L69. (doi:10.1093/mnrasl/slw186).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The X-ray source 1E 161348-5055 in the supernova remnant RCW 103 recently exhibited X-ray activity typical of magnetars, i.e. neutron stars with magnetic fields > 1014 - 1015 G. However, 1E 161348-5055 has an observed period of 6.67 hr, in contrast to magnetars which have a spin period of seconds. Here we describe a simple model which can explain the spin evolution of 1E 161348-5055, as well as other magnetars, from an initial period of milliseconds that would be required for dynamo generation of magnetar-strength magnetic fields. We propose that the key difference between 1E 161348-5055 and other magnetars is the persistence of a remnant disk of small total mass. This disk caused 1E 161348-5055 to undergo ejector and propeller phases in its life, during which strong torques caused a rapid increase of its spin period. By matching its observed spin period and ~ 1-3 kyr age, we find that 1E 161348-5055 has the (slightly) highest magnetic field of all known magnetars, with B ~ 5 x 1015 G, and that its disk had a mass of ~ 1024 g, comparable to that of the asteroid Ceres.

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More information

e-pub ahead of print date: 15 September 2016
Published date: 13 October 2016
Organisations: Astronomy Group, Applied Mathematics

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 400365
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/400365
ISSN: 1745-3925
PURE UUID: 7a88e5e7-b849-48e0-a0a1-5562a18c51bd
ORCID for Wynn C.G. Ho: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6089-6836
ORCID for Nils Andersson: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-8550-3843

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Date deposited: 15 Sep 2016 13:12
Last modified: 18 May 2019 00:37

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