A transient ultraviolet outflow in the short-period X-ray binary UW CrB
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Accreting low mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs) are capable of launching powerful outflows such as accretion disc winds. In disc winds, vast amounts of material can be carried away, potentially greatly impacting the binary and its environment. Previous studies have uncovered signatures of disc winds in the X-ray, optical, near-infrared, and recently even the UV band, predominantly in LMXBs with large discs (Porb ≥ 20 hrs). Here, we present the discovery of transient UV outflow features in UW CrB, a high-inclination (i ≥ 77○) neutron star LMXB with an orbital period of only Porb ≈ 111 min. We present P-Cygni profiles identified for Si iv 1400Å and tentatively for N v 1240Å in one 15 min exposure, which is the only exposure covering orbital phase φ ≈ 0.7 − 0.8, with a velocity of ≈1500 km s−1. We show that due to the presence of black body emission from the neutron star surface and/or boundary layer, a thermal disc wind can be driven despite the short Porb, but explore alternative scenarios as well. The discovery that thermal disc winds may occur in NS-LMXBs with Porb as small as ≈111 min, and can potentially be transient on time scales as short as ≈15 min, warrants further observational and theoretical work.
Fijma , S , Segura , N C , Degenaar , N , Knigge , C , Higginbottom , N , Santisteban , J V H & Maccarone , T J 2023 , ' A transient ultraviolet outflow in the short-period X-ray binary UW CrB ' , Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters , vol. 526 , no. 1 , pp. L149–L154 . https://doi.org/10.1093/mnrasl/slad125
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters
Copyright © 2023 the Authors. This work has been made available online in accordance with the Rights Retention Strategy This accepted manuscript is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. The final published version of this work is available at https://doi.org/10.1093/mnrasl/slad125.
DescriptionThis research is based on observations made with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope obtained from the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS5–26555. These observations are associated with program(s) 12039.
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