Evolution of the Extended X-Ray Emission from the PSR B1259-63/LS 2883 Binary in the 2014-2017 Binary Cycle

Jeremy Hare, Oleg Kargaltsev, George Pavlov, Paz Beniamini

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Abstract

We have performed a series of Chandra X-ray Observatory observations of the gamma-ray binary LS 2883, which is composed of a young pulsar (PSR B1259-63) orbiting a massive Be star with a period of 1236.7 days. The system was observed in five epochs, spanning a range from 352 to 1175 days after the periastron passage on 2014 May 4. The observations confirmed the recurrent nature of the high-speed ejecta that appear as an extended X-ray structure (clump) moving away from the binary. Compared to the results of the previous monitoring campaign (between the 2010 and 2014 periastron passages), this time we find evidence suggesting that the clump is accelerated to a projected velocity with an acceleration s-2 (for uniformly accelerated motion), assuming that it was launched near periastron passage. The observed X-ray properties of the clump are consistent with synchrotron emission from pulsar wind (PW) particles accelerated at the interface between the PW and the clump. We have also performed contemporaneous observations with the Hubble Space Telescope, which are used to set an upper limit on the optical flux of the extended emission.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number74
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume882
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 10 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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