Articles written in Journal of Astrophysics and Astronomy

    • Search for Orbital Motion of the Pulsar 4U 1626-67: Candidate for a Neutron Star with a Supernova Fall-back Accretion Disk

      Chetana Jain Biswajit Paul Kaustubh Joshi Anjan Dutta Harsha Raichur

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      We report here results from a new search for orbital motion of the accretion powered X-ray pulsar 4U 1626-67 using two different analysis techniques. X-ray light curve obtained with the Proportional Counter Array of the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer during a long observation carried out in February 1996, was used in this work. The spin period and the local period derivative were first determined from the broad 2–60 keV energy band light curve and these were used for all subsequent timing analysis. In the first technique, the orbital phase dependent pulse arrival times were determined for different trial orbital periods in the range of 500 to 10,000 s. We have determined a 3𝜎 upper limit of 13 lt-ms on the projected semimajor axis of the orbit of the neutron star for most of the orbital period range, while in some narrow orbital period ranges, covering about 10% of the total orbital period range, it is 20 lt-ms. In the second method, we have measured the pulse arrival times at intervals of 100 s over the entire duration of the observation. The pulse arrival time data were used to put an upper limit on any periodic arrival time delay using the Lomb–Scargle periodogram. We have obtained a similar upper limit of 10 lt-ms using the second method over the orbital period range of 500–10,000 s. This puts very stringent upper limits for the mass of the compact object except for the unlikely case of a complete face-on orientation of the binary system with respect to our line-of-sight. In the light of this measurement and the earlier reports, we discuss the possibility of this system being a neutron star with a supernovae fall-back accretion disk.

    • Pulse Phase Dependence of the Magnetar Bursts

      Chetana Jain Anjan Dutta Biswajit Paul

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      We report here results from a study of X-ray bursts from 3 magnetar candidates (SGR 1806–20, SGR 1900+14 and AXP 1E 2259+586). We have searched for a pulse phase dependence of the X-ray burst rate from these sources. X-ray light curves were obtained with the Proportional Counter Array on-board the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer during the periods of intense burst activity in these sources. On detailed analysis of the three sources, we found a very significant burst rate for all pulsar phases. However, some locations appear to produce bursts slightly more often, rendering the non-isotropic distribution. Only in the case of SGR 1900+14, there is a clear pulse phase dependence of burst rate.

    • Orbital Evolution Measurement of the Accreting Millisecond X-ray Pulsar SAX J1808.4–3658

      Chetana Jain Anjan Dutta Biswajit Paul

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      We present results from a pulse timing analysis of the accretion-powered millisecond X-ray pulsar SAX J1808.4–3658 using X-ray data obtained during four outbursts of this source. Extensive observations were made with the proportional counter array of the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) during the four outbursts that occurred in 1998, 2000, 2002 and 2005. Instead of measuring the arrival times of individual pulses or the pulse arrival time delay measurement that is commonly used to determine the orbital parameters of binary pulsars, we have determined the orbital ephemeris during each observation by optimizing the pulse detection against a range of trial ephemeris values. The source exhibits a significant pulse shape variability during the outbursts. The technique used by us does not depend on the pulse profile evolution, and is therefore, different from the standard pulse timing analysis. Using 27 measurements of orbital ephemerides during the four outbursts spread over more than 7 years and more than 31,000 binary orbits, we have derived an accurate value of the orbital period of 7249.156862(5) s (MJD = 50915) and detected an orbital period derivative of (3.14 ± 0.21) × 10-12 s s-1. We have included a table of the 27 mid-eclipse time measurements of this source that will be valuable for further studies of the orbital evolution of the source, especially with ASTROSAT. We point out that the measured rate of orbital period evolution is considerably faster than the most commonly discussed mechanisms of orbital period evolution like mass transfer, mass loss from the companion star and gravitational wave radiation. The present time scale of orbital period change, 73 Myr is therefore likely to be a transient high value of period evolution and similar measurements during subsequent outbursts of SAX J1808.4–3658 will help us to resolve this.

    • Thermonuclear X-ray burst of MXB 1658-298 with $NuSTAR$


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      MXB 1658-298 is a transient Low-Mass X-ray Binary (LMXB), which shows eclipses, dips and bursts in its light curve. This source has undergone three active periods separated by long quiescent phases. The latest phase of enhanced X-ray emission was observed during 2015–2016. We have analysed broadband data from Swift/XRT and NuSTAR observations carried out in 2015. During NuSTAR observation, one thermonuclear X-ray burst took place. The X-ray emission during the burst was brighter by a factor of $\sim$200, compared to the pre-burst emission. This work focuses on the spectral analysis of MXB 1658-298 during the persistentand the burst phases using NuSTAR observation of 2015. We have also determined the temperature and radiusevolution during the burst using the time-resolved spectroscopy. The burst phase shows mild Photospheric Radius Expansion (PRE).

    • Change in spin-down rate and detection of emission line in HMXB 4U 2206$+$54 with AstroSat observation


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      This work presents timing and spectral analysis of 4U 2206$+$54 using data obtained from LAXPC instrument onboard India’s AstroSat mission. This source was observed with AstroSat in September–October 2016. We report detection of 5648 (4) s pulsations at MJD 57669 in the October observation of 4U 2206$+$54. The pulse profile is sinusoidal and the inherent shape is independent of energy up to 30 keV. The pulse fraction increases with energy from $\sim$0.5 to $\sim$0.8%. We report an updated spin-down rate of $2.95(14) \times 10^{−7}$ s s$^{−1}$. This is about 0.40 times smaller than the previously reported long term value. The energy spectrum is best modeled with an absorbed power-law with high energy exponential cut-off.We have detected presence of broad emission line in 4U 2206$+$54 at an energy of 7 keV with equivalent width of $\sim$0.4 keV.

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      Posted on January 27, 2016

      Since January 2016, the Journal of Astrophysics and Astronomy has moved to Continuous Article Publishing (CAP) mode. This means that each accepted article is being published immediately online with DOI and article citation ID with starting page number 1. Articles are also visible in Web of Science immediately. All these have helped shorten the publication time and have improved the visibility of the articles.

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