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The curious case of Swift J1753.5-0127: a black hole low-mass X-ray binary analogue to Z cam type dwarf novae

The curious case of Swift J1753.5-0127: a black hole low-mass X-ray binary analogue to Z cam type dwarf novae
The curious case of Swift J1753.5-0127: a black hole low-mass X-ray binary analogue to Z cam type dwarf novae

Swift J1753.5-0127 (J1753) is a candidate black hole low-mass X-ray binary (BH-LMXB) that was discovered in outburst in 2005 May. It remained in outburst for ~12 yr, exhibiting a wide range of variability on various time-scales, before entering quiescence after two shortlived, low-luminosity 'mini-outbursts' in 2017 April. The unusually long outburst duration in such a short-period (Porb ≈ 3.24 hr) source, and complex variability observed during this outburst period, challenges the predictions of the widely accepted disc-instability model, which has been shown to broadly reproduce the behaviour of LMXB systems well. The long-term behaviour observed in J1753 is reminiscent of the Z Cam class of dwarf novae, whereby variablemass transfer from the companion star drives unusual outbursts, characterized by stalled decays and abrupt changes in luminosity. Using sophisticated modelling of the multiwavelength light curves and spectra of J1753, during the ~12 yr the source was active, we investigate the hypothesis that periods of enhanced mass transfer from the companion star may have driven this unusually long outburst. Our modelling suggests that J1753 is in fact a BH-LMXB analogue to Z Cam systems, where the variable mass transfer from the companion star is driven by the changing irradiation properties of the system, affecting both the disc and companion star.

Accretion, Accretion discs, Black hole physics, Stars: individual: Swift J1753.5-0127, X-rays: binaries
0035-8711
1840-1857
Shaw, A.W.
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Tetarenko, B.E.
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Dubus, G.
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Dinçer, T.
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Tomsick, J.A.
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Gandhi, P.
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Plotkin, R.M.
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Russell, D.M.
4e70ebbc-c1e4-4a87-8aaa-f7047f34c0d8
Shaw, A.W.
9c5f77a2-2870-47a2-a7bb-9fb5ae71cb93
Tetarenko, B.E.
b62ce163-46fb-4989-b805-b6b2b5a78121
Dubus, G.
5c058290-e721-4e76-9ed9-1fe57a4128e4
Dinçer, T.
2a828a95-d8ff-4721-b0e7-85899e64e998
Tomsick, J.A.
96b2e8cc-70c1-424a-8380-2551a5077ff5
Gandhi, P.
5bc3b5af-42b0-4dd8-8f1f-f74048d4d4a9
Plotkin, R.M.
588c7172-8fd8-4651-a8bf-6bbf72a36edd
Russell, D.M.
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Shaw, A.W., Tetarenko, B.E., Dubus, G., Dinçer, T., Tomsick, J.A., Gandhi, P., Plotkin, R.M. and Russell, D.M. (2019) The curious case of Swift J1753.5-0127: a black hole low-mass X-ray binary analogue to Z cam type dwarf novae. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 482 (2), 1840-1857. (doi:10.1093/mnras/sty2787).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Swift J1753.5-0127 (J1753) is a candidate black hole low-mass X-ray binary (BH-LMXB) that was discovered in outburst in 2005 May. It remained in outburst for ~12 yr, exhibiting a wide range of variability on various time-scales, before entering quiescence after two shortlived, low-luminosity 'mini-outbursts' in 2017 April. The unusually long outburst duration in such a short-period (Porb ≈ 3.24 hr) source, and complex variability observed during this outburst period, challenges the predictions of the widely accepted disc-instability model, which has been shown to broadly reproduce the behaviour of LMXB systems well. The long-term behaviour observed in J1753 is reminiscent of the Z Cam class of dwarf novae, whereby variablemass transfer from the companion star drives unusual outbursts, characterized by stalled decays and abrupt changes in luminosity. Using sophisticated modelling of the multiwavelength light curves and spectra of J1753, during the ~12 yr the source was active, we investigate the hypothesis that periods of enhanced mass transfer from the companion star may have driven this unusually long outburst. Our modelling suggests that J1753 is in fact a BH-LMXB analogue to Z Cam systems, where the variable mass transfer from the companion star is driven by the changing irradiation properties of the system, affecting both the disc and companion star.

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Accepted/In Press date: 1 October 2018
e-pub ahead of print date: 18 October 2018
Published date: 11 January 2019
Additional Information: This article has been accepted for publication in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society ©: 2018 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
Keywords: Accretion, Accretion discs, Black hole physics, Stars: individual: Swift J1753.5-0127, X-rays: binaries

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 427455
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/427455
ISSN: 0035-8711
PURE UUID: 1cd350a1-5fc4-4546-b7f0-a0c044f588ac
ORCID for P. Gandhi: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-3105-2615

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Date deposited: 16 Jan 2019 17:30
Last modified: 07 Oct 2020 02:06

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Contributors

Author: A.W. Shaw
Author: B.E. Tetarenko
Author: G. Dubus
Author: T. Dinçer
Author: J.A. Tomsick
Author: P. Gandhi ORCID iD
Author: R.M. Plotkin
Author: D.M. Russell

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