Journal Article

<i>Chandra</i> and <i>XMM–Newton</i> observations of the low-luminosity X-ray pulsators SAX J1324.4−6200 and SAX J1452.8−5949

R. Kaur, Rudy Wijnands, Alessandro Patruno, Vincenzo Testa, GianLuca Israel, Nathalie Degenaar, Biswajit Paul and Brijesh Kumar

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 394, issue 3, pages 1597-1604
Published in print April 2009 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online April 2009 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Chandra and XMM–Newton observations of the low-luminosity X-ray pulsators SAX J1324.4−6200 and SAX J1452.8−5949

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We present results from our Chandra and XMM–Newton observations of two low-luminosity X-ray pulsators SAX J1324.4−6200 and SAX J1452.8−5949 which have spin periods of 172 and 437 s, respectively. The XMM–Newton spectra for both sources can be fitted well with a simple power-law model of photon index, Γ∼ 1.0. A blackbody model can equally well fit the spectra with a temperature, kT∼ 2 keV, for both sources. During our XMM–Newton observations, SAX J1324.4−6200 is detected with coherent X-ray pulsations at a period of 172.86 ± 0.02 s while no pulsations with a pulse fraction greater than 18 per cent (at 95 per cent confidence level) in 0.2–12 keV energy band are detected in SAX J1452.8−5949. The spin period of SAX J1324.4−6200 is found to be increasing on a time-scale of which would suggest that the accretor is a neutron star and not a white dwarf. Using subarcsec spatial resolution of the Chandra telescope, possible counterparts are seen for both sources in the near-infrared images obtained with the son of infrared spectrometer and array camera (SOFI) instrument on the New Technology Telescope. The X-ray and near-infrared properties of SAX J1324.4−6200 suggest it to be a persistent high-mass accreting X-ray pulsar at a distance ≤8 kpc. We identify the near-infrared counterpart of SAX J1452.8−5949 to be a late-type main-sequence star at a distance ≤10 kpc, thus ruling out SAX J1452.8−5949 to be a high-mass X-ray binary. However, with the present X-ray and near-infrared observations, we cannot make any further conclusive conclusion about the nature of SAX J1452.8−5949.

Keywords: binaries: close; stars: neutron; pulsars: individual: SAX J1324.4−6200, SAX J1452.8−5949; X-rays: binaries

Journal Article.  5695 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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