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Title: A state change in the missing link binary pulsar system PSR J1023+0038

We present radio and γ-ray observations, which, along with concurrent X-ray observations, reveal that the binary millisecond pulsar (MSP)/low-mass X-ray binary transition system PSR J1023+0038 has undergone a transformation in state. Whereas until recently the system harbored a bright millisecond radio pulsar, the radio pulsations at frequencies between 300 to 5000 MHz have now become undetectable. Concurrent with this radio disappearance, the γ-ray flux of the system has quintupled. We conclude that, though the radio pulsar is currently not detectable, the pulsar mechanism is still active and the pulsar wind, as well as a newly formed accretion disk, are together providing the necessary conditions to create the γ-ray increase. This system is the first example of a compact, low-mass binary which has shown significant state changes accompanied by large changes in γ-ray flux; it will continue to provide an exceptional test bed for better understanding the formation of MSPs as well as accretion onto neutron stars in general.
Authors:
;  [1] ; ; ; ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [4] ;  [5] ;  [6] ; ;  [7]
  1. Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics, School of Physics and Astronomy, The University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9PL (United Kingdom)
  2. ASTRON, the Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy, Postbus 2, 7990 AA Dwingeloo (Netherlands)
  3. Columbia Astrophysics Laboratory, Columbia University, 550 West 120th Street, New York, NY 10027 (United States)
  4. McGill University, 3600 University Street, Montreal, QC H3A 2T8 (Canada)
  5. Leiden Observatory, Leiden University, PO Box 9513, NL-2300 RA Leiden (Netherlands)
  6. Space Radiation Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, 1200 East California Boulevard, MC 249-17, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States)
  7. W. W. Hansen Experimental Physics Laboratory, KIPAC, Department of Physics and SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22365593
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal; Journal Volume: 790; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; ACCRETION DISKS; BINARY STARS; COSMIC GAMMA SOURCES; COSMIC RADIO SOURCES; ECLIPSE; MASS; NEUTRON STARS; PULSARS; STELLAR WINDS; TRANSFORMATIONS; X RADIATION