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Title: X-ray spectroscopy of the high-mass x-ray binary pulsar centaurus x-3 over its binary orbit
Authors: Naik, S.
Paul, Biswajit
Ali, Zulfikar
Keywords: Pulsars: Individual: Cen X-3, Stars: Neutron
X-Rays: Stars
Issue Date: Aug-2011
Publisher: IOP Publishing for the American Astronomical Society
Citation: Astrophysical Journal, 2011, Vol.737, p79
Abstract: We present a comprehensive spectral analysis of the high-mass X-ray binary (HMXB) pulsar Centaurus X-3with the Suzaku observatory covering nearly one orbital period. The light curve shows the presence of extended dips which are rarely seen in HMXBs. These dips are seen up to as high as ∼40 keV. The pulsar spectra during the eclipse, out-of-eclipse, and dips are found to be well described by a partial covering power-law model with high-energy cutoff and three Gaussian functions for 6.4 keV, 6.7 keV, and 6.97 keV iron emission lines. The dips in the light curve can be explained by the presence of an additional absorption component with high column density and covering fraction, the values of which are not significant during the rest of the orbital phases. The iron line parameters during the dips and eclipse are significantly different compared to those during the rest of the observation. During the dips, the iron line intensities are found to be lesser by a factor of 2–3 with a significant increase in the line equivalent widths. However, the continuum flux at the corresponding orbital phase is estimated to be lesser by more than an order of magnitude. Similarities in the changes in the iron line flux and equivalent widths during the dips and eclipse segments suggest that the dipping activity in Cen X-3 is caused by an obscuration of the neutron star by dense matter, probably structures in the outer region of the accretion disk, as in the case of dipping low-mass X-ray binaries.
Description: Restricted Access. An open-access version is available at (one of the alternative locations)
ISSN: 0004-637X
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Copyright: 2010 IOP Publishing for the American Astronomical Society
Appears in Collections:Research Papers (A&A)

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