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The 2019 super-Eddington outburst of RX J0209.6−7427: detection of pulsations and constraints on the magnetic field strength

The 2019 super-Eddington outburst of RX J0209.6−7427: detection of pulsations and constraints on the magnetic field strength
The 2019 super-Eddington outburst of RX J0209.6−7427: detection of pulsations and constraints on the magnetic field strength
In 2019 November, MAXI detected an X-ray outburst from the known Be X-ray binary system RX J0209.6−7427 located in the outer wing of the Small Magellanic Cloud. We followed the outburst of the system with NICER, which led to the discovery of X-ray pulsations with a period of 9.3 s. We analysed simultaneous X-ray data obtained with NuSTAR and NICER, allowing us to characterize the spectrum and provide an accurate estimate of its bolometric luminosity. During the outburst, the maximum broad-band X-ray luminosity of the system reached (1–2) × 1039 erg s−1, thus exceeding by about one order of magnitude the Eddington limit for a typical 1.4 M⊙ mass neutron star (NS). Monitoring observations with Fermi/GBM and NICER allowed us to study the spin evolution of the NS and compare it with standard accretion torque models. We found that the NS magnetic field should be of the order of 3 × 1012 G. We conclude that RX J0209.6−7427 exhibited one of the brightest outbursts observed from a Be X-ray binary pulsar in the Magellanic Clouds, reaching similar luminosity level to the 2016 outburst of SMC X-3. Despite the super-Eddington luminosity of RX J0209.6−7427, the NS appears to have only a moderate magnetic field strength.
X-rays: Binaries, galaxies: Individual: SMC, pulsars: Individual: RX J0209.6-7427, stars: Neutron
0035-8711
5350-5359
Vasilopoulos, G
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Ray, P S
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Gendreau, K C
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Jenke, P A
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Jaisawal, G K
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Wilson-hodge, C A
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Strohmayer, T E
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Altamirano, D
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Iwakiri, W B
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Wolff, M T
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Guillot, S
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Malacaria, C
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Stevens, A L
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Vasilopoulos, G
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Ray, P S
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Gendreau, K C
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Jenke, P A
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Jaisawal, G K
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Wilson-hodge, C A
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Strohmayer, T E
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Altamirano, D
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Iwakiri, W B
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Wolff, M T
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Guillot, S
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Malacaria, C
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Stevens, A L
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Vasilopoulos, G, Ray, P S, Gendreau, K C, Jenke, P A, Jaisawal, G K, Wilson-hodge, C A, Strohmayer, T E, Altamirano, D, Iwakiri, W B, Wolff, M T, Guillot, S, Malacaria, C and Stevens, A L (2020) The 2019 super-Eddington outburst of RX J0209.6−7427: detection of pulsations and constraints on the magnetic field strength. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 494 (4), 5350-5359. (doi:10.1093/mnras/staa991).

Record type: Article

Abstract

In 2019 November, MAXI detected an X-ray outburst from the known Be X-ray binary system RX J0209.6−7427 located in the outer wing of the Small Magellanic Cloud. We followed the outburst of the system with NICER, which led to the discovery of X-ray pulsations with a period of 9.3 s. We analysed simultaneous X-ray data obtained with NuSTAR and NICER, allowing us to characterize the spectrum and provide an accurate estimate of its bolometric luminosity. During the outburst, the maximum broad-band X-ray luminosity of the system reached (1–2) × 1039 erg s−1, thus exceeding by about one order of magnitude the Eddington limit for a typical 1.4 M⊙ mass neutron star (NS). Monitoring observations with Fermi/GBM and NICER allowed us to study the spin evolution of the NS and compare it with standard accretion torque models. We found that the NS magnetic field should be of the order of 3 × 1012 G. We conclude that RX J0209.6−7427 exhibited one of the brightest outbursts observed from a Be X-ray binary pulsar in the Magellanic Clouds, reaching similar luminosity level to the 2016 outburst of SMC X-3. Despite the super-Eddington luminosity of RX J0209.6−7427, the NS appears to have only a moderate magnetic field strength.

Text
2004.03022 - Accepted Manuscript
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Accepted/In Press date: 6 April 2020
e-pub ahead of print date: 24 April 2020
Published date: 1 June 2020
Keywords: X-rays: Binaries, galaxies: Individual: SMC, pulsars: Individual: RX J0209.6-7427, stars: Neutron

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 442349
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/442349
ISSN: 0035-8711
PURE UUID: fa85313d-d815-49a8-b70e-e6937fbf6be1
ORCID for D Altamirano: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3422-0074

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Date deposited: 14 Jul 2020 16:30
Last modified: 22 Nov 2021 03:06

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Contributors

Author: G Vasilopoulos
Author: P S Ray
Author: K C Gendreau
Author: P A Jenke
Author: G K Jaisawal
Author: C A Wilson-hodge
Author: T E Strohmayer
Author: D Altamirano ORCID iD
Author: W B Iwakiri
Author: M T Wolff
Author: S Guillot
Author: C Malacaria
Author: A L Stevens

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