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Constraints On The Very Faint X-Ray Transient System M15 X-3

  • Author / Creator
    Arnason, Robin M
  • We present the first combined optical/X-ray observation of a very faint transient X-ray binary (VFXT), M15 X-3. Chandra observations constrain the source to be < 10^34 erg/s in all observations. The X-ray spectrum shows evidence of curvature, and is best fit by a broken power law with break energy E_break = 2.71+0.38 -0:05 keV, and power law indices of Gamma_1 = 1.25+0.02 -0.01 and Gamma_2 = 1.82+0.20 -0.02. Fitting the HST magnitudes of the optical counterpart suggests a power-law accretion disk and a main-sequence companion of size 0.440+0.035 -0:060 solar masses. This mass estimate is likely to be an upper limit since the short inferred period of P ~ 4 hr implies the companion is irradiated. This rules out several explanations for very faint transient behaviour for this source, and suggests a neutron star accretor experiencing inefficient accretion due to a propeller effect.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    2014-11
  • Type of Item
    Thesis
  • Degree
    Master of Science
  • DOI
    https://doi.org/10.7939/R3V11VT9S
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
    English
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
    Master's
  • Department
    • Department of Physics
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
    • Sivakoff, Gregory (Physics)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Grant, Darren (Physics)
    • Sivakoff, Gregory (Physics)
    • Morsink, Sharon (Physics)
    • Heinke, Craig (Physics)