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Title: Quasi-periodic oscillations in short recurring bursts of magnetars SGR 1806–20 and SGR 1900+14 observed with RXTE

Quasi-periodic oscillations (QPOs) observed in the giant flares of magnetars are of particular interest due to their potential to open up a window into the neutron star interior via neutron star asteroseismology. However, only three giant flares have been observed. We therefore make use of the much larger data set of shorter, less energetic recurrent bursts. Here, we report on a search for QPOs in a large data set of bursts from the two most burst-active magnetars, SGR 1806-20 and SGR 1900+14, observed with Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer. We find a single detection in an averaged periodogram comprising 30 bursts from SGR 1806–20, with a frequency of 57 Hz and a width of 5 Hz, remarkably similar to a giant flare QPO observed from SGR 1900+14. This QPO fits naturally within the framework of global magneto-elastic torsional oscillations employed to explain giant flare QPOs. Additionally, we uncover a limit on the applicability of Fourier analysis for light curves with low background count rates and strong variability on short timescales. In this regime, standard Fourier methodology and more sophisticated Fourier analyses fail in equal parts by yielding an unacceptably large number of false-positive detections. This problem is not straightforward to solvemore » in the Fourier domain. Instead, we show how simulations of light curves can offer a viable solution for QPO searches in these light curves.« less
Authors:
; ;  [1] ;  [2]
  1. Anton Pannekoek Institute for Astronomy, University of Amsterdam, Postbus 94249, 1090 GE Amsterdam (Netherlands)
  2. Sabanci University, Orhanli-Tuzla, İstanbul 34956 (Turkey)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22370244
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal; Journal Volume: 795; Journal Issue: 2; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; COUNTING RATES; DETECTION; FOURIER ANALYSIS; MAGNETIC FIELDS; MATHEMATICAL SOLUTIONS; NEUTRON STARS; OSCILLATIONS; PERIODICITY; PULSARS; SIMULATION; VISIBLE RADIATION; X RADIATION