The Birth of an Ultraluminous X-Ray Source in M83
MetadataShow full item record
A previously undetected (LX < 1036 erg s–1) source in the strongly star-forming galaxy M83 entered an ultraluminous state between 2009 August and 2010 December. It was first seen with Chandra on 2010 December 23 at LX ≈ 4 × 1039 erg s–1 and has remained ultraluminous through our most recent observations in 2011 December, with typical flux variation of a factor of two. The spectrum is well fitted by a combination of absorbed power-law and disk blackbody models. While the relative contributions of the models vary with time, we have seen no evidence for a canonical state transition. The luminosity and spectral properties are consistent with accretion powered by a black hole with M BH ≈ 40-100 M ☉. In 2011 July we found a luminous, blue optical counterpart that had not been seen in deep Hubble Space Telescope observations obtained in 2009 August. These optical observations suggest that the donor star is a low-mass star undergoing Roche lobe overflow, and that the blue optical emission seen during the outburst is coming from an irradiated accretion disk. This source shows that ultraluminous X-ray sources (ULXs) with low-mass companions are an important component of the ULX population in star-forming galaxies and provides further evidence that the blue optical counterparts of some ULXs need not indicate a young, high-mass companion, but rather that they may indicate X-ray reprocessing.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Motch, C.; Pakull, M.; Soria, Roberto; Grisé, F.; Pietrzynski, G. (2014)Most ultraluminous X-ray sources have a typical set of properties not seen in Galactic stellar-mass black holes. They have luminosities of more than 3 × 10 39 ergs per second, unusually soft X-ray components (with a typical ...
Urquhart, Ryan; Soria, Roberto; Johnston, H.; Pakull, M.; Motch, C.; Schwope, A.; Miller-Jones, James; Anderson, Gemma (2018)We present the discovery and interpretation of ionized nebulae around two ultraluminous X-ray sources in M 51; both sources share the rare property of showing X-ray eclipses by their companion stars and are therefore prime ...
Urquhart, Ryan; Soria, Roberto (2016)We present the discovery, from archival Chandra and XMM-Newton data, of X-ray eclipses in two ultraluminous X-ray sources (ULXs), located in the same region of the galaxy M51: CXOM51 J132940.0+471237 (ULX-1, for simplicity) ...