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NICER observes a secondary peak in the decay of a thermonuclear burst from 4U 1608-52

NICER observes a secondary peak in the decay of a thermonuclear burst from 4U 1608-52
NICER observes a secondary peak in the decay of a thermonuclear burst from 4U 1608-52

We report for the first time below 1.5 keV, the detection of a secondary peak in an Eddington-limited thermonuclear X-ray burst observed by the Neutron Star Interior Composition Explorer (NICER) from the low-mass X-ray binary 4U 1608-52. Our time-resolved spectroscopy of the burst is consistent with a model consisting of a varying-temperature blackbody, and an evolving persistent flux contribution, likely attributed to the accretion process. The dip in the burst intensity before the secondary peak is also visible in the bolometric flux. Prior to the dip, the blackbody temperature reached a maximum of ≈3 keV. Our analysis suggests that the dip and secondary peak are not related to photospheric expansion, varying circumstellar absorption, or scattering. Instead, we discuss the observation in the context of hydrodynamical instabilities, thermonuclear flame spreading models, and reburning in the cooling tail of the burst.

accretion, accretion disks, stars: individual (4U 1608-52), stars: neutron, X-rays: binaries, X-rays: bursts
0004-637X
Jaisawal, Gaurava K.
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Chenevez, Jérôme
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Bult, Peter
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In'T Zand, Jean J.M.
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Galloway, Duncan K.
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Strohmayer, Tod E.
09bbe020-7c6f-496b-a058-51385cf48f85
Güver, Tolga
e8cdef32-2de7-43b5-b34c-325c01f0bfab
Adkins, Phillip
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Altamirano, Diego
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Arzoumanian, Zaven
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Chakrabarty, Deepto
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Coopersmith, Jonathan
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Gendreau, Keith C.
cad26609-b22d-4c1d-ada3-4af51e2cd780
Guillot, Sebastien
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Keek, Laurens
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Ludlam, Renee M.
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Malacaria, Christian
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Jaisawal, Gaurava K.
4d5dcd39-0881-426d-8ad7-f378238405ae
Chenevez, Jérôme
21f50a66-a919-4f31-9688-02f760e4fe09
Bult, Peter
73bd0a3d-c566-4046-86c9-31f6e6cdac07
In'T Zand, Jean J.M.
865c117a-34fa-4d5c-8fd0-3f210112a900
Galloway, Duncan K.
8c6113f0-dce7-4617-ab59-2e4e80072657
Strohmayer, Tod E.
09bbe020-7c6f-496b-a058-51385cf48f85
Güver, Tolga
e8cdef32-2de7-43b5-b34c-325c01f0bfab
Adkins, Phillip
c45357af-3277-4d0f-b09b-aeb666549eb7
Altamirano, Diego
d5ccdb09-0b71-4303-9538-05b467be075b
Arzoumanian, Zaven
5befbba6-f6a1-47c8-ae9e-021c5d854a64
Chakrabarty, Deepto
322198a5-4c3a-4369-99ee-b66befa6a518
Coopersmith, Jonathan
6170d772-03aa-4731-bc40-a57a3da58951
Gendreau, Keith C.
cad26609-b22d-4c1d-ada3-4af51e2cd780
Guillot, Sebastien
26b90302-d8b3-4b06-9254-d3327cac3ccc
Keek, Laurens
9dcd2383-8c45-4f7c-9d3f-fae8c29385f7
Ludlam, Renee M.
f2941f22-8969-4feb-8753-2591c5046287
Malacaria, Christian
309a8f91-28a7-4365-b0a3-633171fc2e51

Jaisawal, Gaurava K., Chenevez, Jérôme, Bult, Peter, In'T Zand, Jean J.M., Galloway, Duncan K., Strohmayer, Tod E., Güver, Tolga, Adkins, Phillip, Altamirano, Diego, Arzoumanian, Zaven, Chakrabarty, Deepto, Coopersmith, Jonathan, Gendreau, Keith C., Guillot, Sebastien, Keek, Laurens, Ludlam, Renee M. and Malacaria, Christian (2019) NICER observes a secondary peak in the decay of a thermonuclear burst from 4U 1608-52. Astrophysical Journal, 883 (1), [61]. (doi:10.3847/1538-4357/ab3a37).

Record type: Article

Abstract

We report for the first time below 1.5 keV, the detection of a secondary peak in an Eddington-limited thermonuclear X-ray burst observed by the Neutron Star Interior Composition Explorer (NICER) from the low-mass X-ray binary 4U 1608-52. Our time-resolved spectroscopy of the burst is consistent with a model consisting of a varying-temperature blackbody, and an evolving persistent flux contribution, likely attributed to the accretion process. The dip in the burst intensity before the secondary peak is also visible in the bolometric flux. Prior to the dip, the blackbody temperature reached a maximum of ≈3 keV. Our analysis suggests that the dip and secondary peak are not related to photospheric expansion, varying circumstellar absorption, or scattering. Instead, we discuss the observation in the context of hydrodynamical instabilities, thermonuclear flame spreading models, and reburning in the cooling tail of the burst.

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Nicer observes a secondary peak in the decay of a thermonuclear burst from 4u 1608-52 - Accepted Manuscript
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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 8 August 2019
e-pub ahead of print date: 20 September 2019
Additional Information: arXiv is AM
Keywords: accretion, accretion disks, stars: individual (4U 1608-52), stars: neutron, X-rays: binaries, X-rays: bursts

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 435321
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/435321
ISSN: 0004-637X
PURE UUID: f9d2a2e5-03e7-444b-86c8-6f6996a7f0ab
ORCID for Diego Altamirano: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3422-0074

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 30 Oct 2019 17:30
Last modified: 26 Nov 2021 03:02

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Contributors

Author: Gaurava K. Jaisawal
Author: Jérôme Chenevez
Author: Peter Bult
Author: Jean J.M. In'T Zand
Author: Duncan K. Galloway
Author: Tod E. Strohmayer
Author: Tolga Güver
Author: Phillip Adkins
Author: Zaven Arzoumanian
Author: Deepto Chakrabarty
Author: Jonathan Coopersmith
Author: Keith C. Gendreau
Author: Sebastien Guillot
Author: Laurens Keek
Author: Renee M. Ludlam
Author: Christian Malacaria

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