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Constraining the mass and radius of neutron stars in globular clusters

Constraining the mass and radius of neutron stars in globular clusters
Constraining the mass and radius of neutron stars in globular clusters
We analyze observations of eight quiescent low-mass X-ray binaries in globular clusters and combine them to determine the neutron star mass-radius curve and the equation of state of dense matter. We determine the effect that several uncertainties may have on our results, including uncertainties in the distance, the atmosphere composition, the neutron star maximum mass, the neutron star mass distribution, the possible presence of a hotspot on the neutron star surface, and the prior choice for the equation of state of dense matter. The distance uncertainty is implemented in a new Gaussian blurring method which can be directly applied to the probability distribution over mass and radius.We find that the radius of a 1.4 solar mass neutron star is most likely from 10 to 14 km and that tighter constraints are only possible with stronger assumptions about the nature of the neutron stars, the systematics of the observations, or the nature of dense matter. Strong phase transitions in the equation of state are preferred, and in this case, the radius is likely smaller than 12 km. However, radii larger than 12 km are preferred if the neutron stars have uneven temperature distributions.
0035-8711
421-435
Steiner, Andrew W.
4b4aaabf-36de-46ee-8782-14b6fffc6f69
Heinke, Craig O.
bd623ccb-27c1-4b45-8c3e-0609c69f7f2f
Bogdanov, Slavko
6ab111e5-fed4-40cf-8d01-d7be81578a7f
Li, Cheng K.
f2fd330a-eb52-4bcf-b193-1296a7f85c00
Ho, Wynn C.G.
d78d4c52-8f92-4846-876f-e04a8f803a45
Bahramian, Arash
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Han, Sophia
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Steiner, Andrew W.
4b4aaabf-36de-46ee-8782-14b6fffc6f69
Heinke, Craig O.
bd623ccb-27c1-4b45-8c3e-0609c69f7f2f
Bogdanov, Slavko
6ab111e5-fed4-40cf-8d01-d7be81578a7f
Li, Cheng K.
f2fd330a-eb52-4bcf-b193-1296a7f85c00
Ho, Wynn C.G.
d78d4c52-8f92-4846-876f-e04a8f803a45
Bahramian, Arash
336ddf3d-7f23-427e-a920-eff35b727004
Han, Sophia
45c2058e-8b4b-43f0-904c-40c0c1c27ba7

Steiner, Andrew W., Heinke, Craig O., Bogdanov, Slavko, Li, Cheng K., Ho, Wynn C.G., Bahramian, Arash and Han, Sophia (2018) Constraining the mass and radius of neutron stars in globular clusters. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 476 (1), 421-435. (doi:10.1093/mnras/sty215).

Record type: Article

Abstract

We analyze observations of eight quiescent low-mass X-ray binaries in globular clusters and combine them to determine the neutron star mass-radius curve and the equation of state of dense matter. We determine the effect that several uncertainties may have on our results, including uncertainties in the distance, the atmosphere composition, the neutron star maximum mass, the neutron star mass distribution, the possible presence of a hotspot on the neutron star surface, and the prior choice for the equation of state of dense matter. The distance uncertainty is implemented in a new Gaussian blurring method which can be directly applied to the probability distribution over mass and radius.We find that the radius of a 1.4 solar mass neutron star is most likely from 10 to 14 km and that tighter constraints are only possible with stronger assumptions about the nature of the neutron stars, the systematics of the observations, or the nature of dense matter. Strong phase transitions in the equation of state are preferred, and in this case, the radius is likely smaller than 12 km. However, radii larger than 12 km are preferred if the neutron stars have uneven temperature distributions.

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Accepted/In Press date: 23 January 2018
e-pub ahead of print date: 29 January 2018
Published date: 1 May 2018

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 417545
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/417545
ISSN: 0035-8711
PURE UUID: cb0ec0e7-196a-4d87-8b56-040f3414cec8
ORCID for Wynn C.G. Ho: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6089-6836

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Date deposited: 02 Feb 2018 17:30
Last modified: 17 Dec 2019 01:42

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