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Article: Probing the pulsar wind in the γ-ray binary system PSR B1259-63/SS 2883

TitleProbing the pulsar wind in the γ-ray binary system PSR B1259-63/SS 2883
Authors
KeywordsAcceleration of particles
Gamma rays: theory
Pulsars: individual (PSR B1259?63)
Radiation mechanisms: non-thermal
X-rays: binaries
Issue Date2009
PublisherInstitute of Physics Publishing Ltd. The Journal's web site is located at http://iopscience.iop.org/2041-8205
Citation
Astrophysical Journal Letters, 2009, v. 702 n. 1, p. 100-113 How to Cite?
AbstractThe spectral energy distribution from the X-ray to the very high energy regime (>100 GeV) has been investigated for the γ-ray binary system PSR B1259-63/SS 2883 as a function of the orbital phase within the framework of a simple model of a pulsar wind nebula. The emission model is based on the synchrotron radiation process for the X-ray regime and the inverse Compton scattering process boosting stellar photons from the Be star companion to the very high energy (100 GeV-TeV) regime. With this model, the observed temporal behavior can, in principle, be used to probe the pulsar wind properties at the shock as a function of the orbital phase. Due to theoretical uncertainties in the detailed microphysics of the acceleration process and the conversion of magnetic energy into particle kinetic energy, the observed X-ray data for the entire orbit are fitted using two different methods. In the first method, the magnetization parameter and the Lorentz factor of the wind at the shock are allowed to vary for a given power law index characterizing the accelerated particles at the shock. In this case, the observed photon index of 1.2 in the 1-10 keV energy band near the periastron passage can be understood provided that (1) the electron energy distribution is described by a broken power law and (2) there is a break at an energy of about 8 × 106 in units of the electron rest mass energy. In the second method, the magnetization parameter and the power law index are varied for a fixed Lorentz factor. Here, the photon index of 1.2 can result from a particle distribution described by a power law index of 1.5. The calculated emission in the energy band corresponding to 10 MeV-1 GeV from the shocked pulsar wind indicates that these two cases can be distinguished by future Fermi observations near the periastron. It is also found that the emission from the unshocked wind could be detectable by the Fermi telescope near the periastron passage if most of the kinetic energy of the flow is carried by particles with Lorentz factors of Γ 105. © 2009. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/129028
ISSN
2015 Impact Factor: 5.487
2015 SCImago Journal Rankings: 3.369
ISI Accession Number ID
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Theoretical Institute for Advanced Research in Astrophysics (TIARA)
National Science CouncilNSC 96-2752-M-007-007-PAE
Funding Information:

We wish to express our thanks to the referee for detailed comments that significantly improved the paper. In addition, we also thank R. Huang for providing XMM-Newton and ASCA data. This work was supported by the Theoretical Institute for Advanced Research in Astrophysics (TIARA) operated under Academia Sinica and the National Science Council Excellence Projects program in Taiwan, administered through grant NSC 96-2752-M-007-007-PAE.

References

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorTakata, Jen_HK
dc.contributor.authorTaam, REen_HK
dc.date.accessioned2010-12-20T06:38:59Z-
dc.date.available2010-12-20T06:38:59Z-
dc.date.issued2009en_HK
dc.identifier.citationAstrophysical Journal Letters, 2009, v. 702 n. 1, p. 100-113en_HK
dc.identifier.issn2041-8205en_HK
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/129028-
dc.description.abstractThe spectral energy distribution from the X-ray to the very high energy regime (>100 GeV) has been investigated for the γ-ray binary system PSR B1259-63/SS 2883 as a function of the orbital phase within the framework of a simple model of a pulsar wind nebula. The emission model is based on the synchrotron radiation process for the X-ray regime and the inverse Compton scattering process boosting stellar photons from the Be star companion to the very high energy (100 GeV-TeV) regime. With this model, the observed temporal behavior can, in principle, be used to probe the pulsar wind properties at the shock as a function of the orbital phase. Due to theoretical uncertainties in the detailed microphysics of the acceleration process and the conversion of magnetic energy into particle kinetic energy, the observed X-ray data for the entire orbit are fitted using two different methods. In the first method, the magnetization parameter and the Lorentz factor of the wind at the shock are allowed to vary for a given power law index characterizing the accelerated particles at the shock. In this case, the observed photon index of 1.2 in the 1-10 keV energy band near the periastron passage can be understood provided that (1) the electron energy distribution is described by a broken power law and (2) there is a break at an energy of about 8 × 106 in units of the electron rest mass energy. In the second method, the magnetization parameter and the power law index are varied for a fixed Lorentz factor. Here, the photon index of 1.2 can result from a particle distribution described by a power law index of 1.5. The calculated emission in the energy band corresponding to 10 MeV-1 GeV from the shocked pulsar wind indicates that these two cases can be distinguished by future Fermi observations near the periastron. It is also found that the emission from the unshocked wind could be detectable by the Fermi telescope near the periastron passage if most of the kinetic energy of the flow is carried by particles with Lorentz factors of Γ 105. © 2009. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.en_HK
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherInstitute of Physics Publishing Ltd. The Journal's web site is located at http://iopscience.iop.org/2041-8205en_HK
dc.relation.ispartofAstrophysical Journal Lettersen_HK
dc.rightsThe Astrophysical Journal. Copyright © Institute of Physics Publishing, Inc.-
dc.subjectAcceleration of particlesen_HK
dc.subjectGamma rays: theoryen_HK
dc.subjectPulsars: individual (PSR B1259?63)en_HK
dc.subjectRadiation mechanisms: non-thermalen_HK
dc.subjectX-rays: binariesen_HK
dc.titleProbing the pulsar wind in the γ-ray binary system PSR B1259-63/SS 2883en_HK
dc.typeArticleen_HK
dc.identifier.openurlhttp://library.hku.hk:4550/resserv?sid=HKU:IR&issn=0004-637X&volume=702&issue=1&spage=100&epage=113&date=2009&atitle=Probing+the+pulsar+wind+in+the+γ-ray+binary+system+PSR+B1259-63/SS+2883-
dc.identifier.emailTakata, J: takata@hku.hken_HK
dc.identifier.authorityTakata, J=rp00786en_HK
dc.description.naturelink_to_subscribed_fulltext-
dc.identifier.doi10.1088/0004-637X/702/1/100en_HK
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-70449556343en_HK
dc.identifier.hkuros170770-
dc.relation.referenceshttp://www.scopus.com/mlt/select.url?eid=2-s2.0-70449556343&selection=ref&src=s&origin=recordpageen_HK
dc.identifier.volume702en_HK
dc.identifier.issue1en_HK
dc.identifier.spage100en_HK
dc.identifier.epage113en_HK
dc.identifier.isiWOS:000269244500009-
dc.publisher.placeUnited Kingdomen_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridTakata, J=22735157300en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridTaam, RE=7003756329en_HK

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