Bright Mini-outburst Ends the 12 yr Long Activity of the Black Hole Candidate Swift J1753.5-0127

G. B. Zhang, F. Bernardini, Dave Russell, Joseph (Yosi) Gelfand, J. P. Lasota, A. Al Qasim, A. Almannaei, K. I.I. Koljonen, A. W. Shaw, F. Lewis, J. A. Tomsick, R. M. Plotkin, J. C.A. Miller-Jones, D. Maitra, J. Homan, P. A. Charles, P. Kobel, D. Perez, R. Doran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We present optical, UV, and X-ray monitoring of the short orbital period black hole X-ray binary candidate Swift J1753.5-0127, focusing on the final stages of its 12 yr long outburst that started in 2005. From 2016 September onward, the source started to fade, and within 3 months, the optical flux almost reached the quiescent level. Soon after that, using a new proposed rebrightening classification method, we recorded a mini-outburst and a reflare in the optical light curves, peaking in 2017 February (V ∼ 17.0) and May (V ∼ 17.9), respectively. Remarkably, the mini-outburst has a peak flux consistent with the extrapolation of the slow decay before the fading phase preceding it. The following reflare was fainter and shorter. We found from optical colors that the temperature of the outer disk was ∼11,000 K when the source started to fade rapidly. According to the disk instability model, this is close to the critical temperature when a cooling wave is expected to form in the disk, shutting down the outburst. The optical color could be a useful tool to predict decay rates in some X-ray transients. We notice that all X-ray binaries that show mini-outbursts following a main outburst are short orbital period systems (<7 hr). In analogy with another class of short-period binaries showing similar mini-outbursts, the cataclysmic variables of the RZ LMi type, we suggest that mini-outbursts could occur if there is a hot inner disk at the end of the outburst decay.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number5
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume876
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2019

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outburst
x rays
color
orbitals
cataclysmic variables
decay
fading
light curve
decay rates
extrapolation
critical temperature
cooling
temperature
monitoring

Keywords

  • accretion, accretion disks
  • black hole physics
  • X-rays: individual (Swift J1753.5-0127)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

Bright Mini-outburst Ends the 12 yr Long Activity of the Black Hole Candidate Swift J1753.5-0127. / Zhang, G. B.; Bernardini, F.; Russell, Dave; Gelfand, Joseph (Yosi); Lasota, J. P.; Qasim, A. Al; Almannaei, A.; Koljonen, K. I.I.; Shaw, A. W.; Lewis, F.; Tomsick, J. A.; Plotkin, R. M.; Miller-Jones, J. C.A.; Maitra, D.; Homan, J.; Charles, P. A.; Kobel, P.; Perez, D.; Doran, R.

In: Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 876, No. 1, 5, 01.05.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Zhang, GB, Bernardini, F, Russell, D, Gelfand, JY, Lasota, JP, Qasim, AA, Almannaei, A, Koljonen, KII, Shaw, AW, Lewis, F, Tomsick, JA, Plotkin, RM, Miller-Jones, JCA, Maitra, D, Homan, J, Charles, PA, Kobel, P, Perez, D & Doran, R 2019, 'Bright Mini-outburst Ends the 12 yr Long Activity of the Black Hole Candidate Swift J1753.5-0127', Astrophysical Journal, vol. 876, no. 1, 5. https://doi.org/10.3847/1538-4357/ab12dd
Zhang, G. B. ; Bernardini, F. ; Russell, Dave ; Gelfand, Joseph (Yosi) ; Lasota, J. P. ; Qasim, A. Al ; Almannaei, A. ; Koljonen, K. I.I. ; Shaw, A. W. ; Lewis, F. ; Tomsick, J. A. ; Plotkin, R. M. ; Miller-Jones, J. C.A. ; Maitra, D. ; Homan, J. ; Charles, P. A. ; Kobel, P. ; Perez, D. ; Doran, R. / Bright Mini-outburst Ends the 12 yr Long Activity of the Black Hole Candidate Swift J1753.5-0127. In: Astrophysical Journal. 2019 ; Vol. 876, No. 1.
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abstract = "We present optical, UV, and X-ray monitoring of the short orbital period black hole X-ray binary candidate Swift J1753.5-0127, focusing on the final stages of its 12 yr long outburst that started in 2005. From 2016 September onward, the source started to fade, and within 3 months, the optical flux almost reached the quiescent level. Soon after that, using a new proposed rebrightening classification method, we recorded a mini-outburst and a reflare in the optical light curves, peaking in 2017 February (V ∼ 17.0) and May (V ∼ 17.9), respectively. Remarkably, the mini-outburst has a peak flux consistent with the extrapolation of the slow decay before the fading phase preceding it. The following reflare was fainter and shorter. We found from optical colors that the temperature of the outer disk was ∼11,000 K when the source started to fade rapidly. According to the disk instability model, this is close to the critical temperature when a cooling wave is expected to form in the disk, shutting down the outburst. The optical color could be a useful tool to predict decay rates in some X-ray transients. We notice that all X-ray binaries that show mini-outbursts following a main outburst are short orbital period systems (<7 hr). In analogy with another class of short-period binaries showing similar mini-outbursts, the cataclysmic variables of the RZ LMi type, we suggest that mini-outbursts could occur if there is a hot inner disk at the end of the outburst decay.",
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AU - Bernardini, F.

AU - Russell, Dave

AU - Gelfand, Joseph (Yosi)

AU - Lasota, J. P.

AU - Qasim, A. Al

AU - Almannaei, A.

AU - Koljonen, K. I.I.

AU - Shaw, A. W.

AU - Lewis, F.

AU - Tomsick, J. A.

AU - Plotkin, R. M.

AU - Miller-Jones, J. C.A.

AU - Maitra, D.

AU - Homan, J.

AU - Charles, P. A.

AU - Kobel, P.

AU - Perez, D.

AU - Doran, R.

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