• Fast transition between high-soft and low-soft states in GRS 1915 + 105: Evidence for a critically viscous accretion flow

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    • Keywords


      Accretion, accretion discs; binaries:close; black hole physics; stars:individual; GRS 1915 + 105; X-rays:stars

    • Abstract


      We present the results of a detailed analysis of RXTE observations of classω (Klein-Woltet al. 2002) which show an unusual state transition between high-soft and low-soft states in the Galactic microquasar GRS 1915 + 105. Out of about 600 pointed RXTE observations, the source was found to exhibit such state transition only on 16 occasions. An examination of the RXTE/ASM data in conjunction with the pointed observations reveals that these events appeared as a series of quasi-regular dips in two stretches of long duration (about 20 days during each occasion) when hard X-ray and radio flux were very low. The X-ray light curve and colour-colour diagram of the source during these observations are found to be different from any reported so far. The duration of these dips is found to be of the order of a few tens of seconds with a repetition time of a few hundred seconds. The transition between these dips and non-dips which differ in intensity by a factor of ∼ 3.5, is observed to be very fast (∼ a few seconds). It is observed that the low-frequency narrow QPOs are absent in the power density spectrum (PDS) of the dip and non-dip regions of classω and the PDS is a power law in the 0.1–10 Hz frequency range. There is a remarkable similarity in the spectral and timing properties of the source during the dip and non-dip regions in this set of observations. These properties of the source are distinctly different from those seen in the observations of other classes. This indicates that the basic accretion disk structure during both dip and non-dip regions of classω is similar, but differ only in intensity. To explain these observations, we invoke a model in which the viscosity is very close to critical viscosity and the shock wave is weak or absent.

    • Author Affiliations


      S. Naik1 A. R. Rao1 Sandip K. Chakrabarti2

      1. Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Homi Bhabha Road, Mumbai - 400 005, India
      2. S. N. Bose National Center for Basic Sciences, Salt Lake, Calcutta - 700 091, India
    • Dates

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