A 420-day X-ray/optical modulation and extended X-ray dips in the short-period transient Swift J1753.5-0127

A. W. Shaw, P. A. Charles, A. J. Bird, R. Cornelisse, J. Casares, F. Lewis, T. Muñoz-Darias, Dave Russell, C. Zurita

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    We have discovered a ~420-d modulation, with associated X-ray dips, in Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer-All Sky Monitor/Monitor of All-Sky X-ray Image/Swift-Burst Alert Telescope archival light curves of the short-period (3.2 h) black holeX-ray transient, Swift J1753.5-0127. This modulation only appeared at the end of a gradual re-brightening, approximately 3 yr after the initial X-ray outburst in mid-2005. The same periodicity is present in both the 2-20 and 15-50 keV bands, but with a ~0.1 phase offset (≈40 d). Contemporaneous photometry in the optical and near-infrared reveals a weaker modulation, but consistent with the X-ray period. There are two substantial X-ray dips (very strong in the 15-50 keV band, weaker at lower energies) that are separated by an interval equal to the X-ray period. This likely indicates two physically separated emitting regions for the hard X-ray and lower energy emission. We interpret this periodicity as a property of the accretion disc, most likely a long-term precession, where the disc edge structure and X-ray irradiation are responsible for the hard X-ray dips and modulation, although we discuss other possible explanations, including Lense-Thirring precession in the inner disc region and spectral state variations. Such precession indicates a very high mass ratio low-mass X-ray binary, which even for a ~10M· BH requires a brown dwarf donor (~0.02MM·), making Swift J1753.5-0127 a possible analogue of millisecond X-ray pulsars. We compare the properties of Swift J1753.5-0127 with other recently discovered short-period transients, which are now forming a separate population of high-latitude BH transients located in the galactic halo.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)740-745
    Number of pages6
    JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
    Volume433
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jul 1 2013

    Fingerprint

    light modulation
    dip
    x rays
    precession
    modulation
    sky
    monitors
    periodic variations
    periodicity
    X Ray Timing Explorer
    galactic halos
    accretion disks
    mass ratios
    pulsars
    polar regions
    light curve
    photometry
    outburst
    bursts
    rays

    Keywords

    • X-rays:individual:swift J1753.5-0127

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Astronomy and Astrophysics
    • Space and Planetary Science

    Cite this

    A 420-day X-ray/optical modulation and extended X-ray dips in the short-period transient Swift J1753.5-0127. / Shaw, A. W.; Charles, P. A.; Bird, A. J.; Cornelisse, R.; Casares, J.; Lewis, F.; Muñoz-Darias, T.; Russell, Dave; Zurita, C.

    In: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 433, No. 1, 01.07.2013, p. 740-745.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Shaw, AW, Charles, PA, Bird, AJ, Cornelisse, R, Casares, J, Lewis, F, Muñoz-Darias, T, Russell, D & Zurita, C 2013, 'A 420-day X-ray/optical modulation and extended X-ray dips in the short-period transient Swift J1753.5-0127', Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, vol. 433, no. 1, pp. 740-745. https://doi.org/10.1093/mnras/stt763
    Shaw, A. W. ; Charles, P. A. ; Bird, A. J. ; Cornelisse, R. ; Casares, J. ; Lewis, F. ; Muñoz-Darias, T. ; Russell, Dave ; Zurita, C. / A 420-day X-ray/optical modulation and extended X-ray dips in the short-period transient Swift J1753.5-0127. In: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 2013 ; Vol. 433, No. 1. pp. 740-745.
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    AU - Bird, A. J.

    AU - Cornelisse, R.

    AU - Casares, J.

    AU - Lewis, F.

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