The evolving polarized jet of black hole candidate Swift J1745-26
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Swift J1745-26 is an X-ray binary towards the Galactic Centre that was detected when it went into outburst in September 2012. This source is thought to be one of a growing number of sources that display “failed outbursts”, in which the self-absorbed radio jets of the transient source are never fully quenched and the thermal emission from the geometrically-thin inner accretion disk never fully dominates the X-ray flux. We present multi frequency data from the Very Large Array, Australia Telescope Compact Array and Karoo Array Telescope (KAT- 7) radio arrays, spanning the entire period of the outburst. Our rich data set exposes radio emission that displays a high level of large scale variability compared to the X-ray emission and deviations from the standard radio–X-ray correlation that are indicative of an unstable jet and confirm the outburst’s transition from the canonical hard state to an intermediate state. We also observe steepening of the spectral index and an increase of the linear polarization to a large fraction (50%) of the total flux, as well as a rotation of the electric vector position angle. These are consistent with a transformation from a self-absorbed compact jet to optically-thin eject a – the first time such a discrete ejection has been observed in a failed outburst – and may imply complex magnetic field geometry.
© 2013 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society
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