Properties of the propagating shock wave in the accretion flow around GX 339-4 in the 2010 outburst
D. Debnath1, S. K. Chakrabarti1,2 and A. Nandi1,3
Indian Centre for Space Physics, Chalantika 43, Garia Station Rd., Kolkata 700084, India
2 S. N. Bose National Centre for Basic Sciences, Salt Lake, Kolkata 700098, India
3 On deputation from Indian Space Research Organization-HQ, Bangalore, India e-mail: [dipak;anuj]@csp.res.in, email@example.com
Accepted: 7 September 2010
Context. The black hole candidate GX 339-4 exhibited an X-ray outburst in January 2010, which is still continuing. We here discuss the timing and the spectral properties of the outburst using RXTE data.
Aims. Our goal is to study the timing and spectral properties of GX 339-4 using its recent outburst data and extract information about the nature of the accretion flow.
Methods. We use RXTE archival data of the recent GX 339-4 outburst and analyze them with the NASA HEAsoft package, version 6.8. We then compare the observed quasi-periodic oscillation (QPO) frequencies with those from existing shock oscillation model and obtain the nature of evolution of the shock locations during the outburst.
Results. We found that the QPO frequencies are monotonically increasing from 0.102 Hz to 5.69 Hz within a period of ~26 days. We explain this evolution with the propagating oscillatory shock (POS) solution and find the variation of the initial and final shock locations and strengths. The model fits also give the velocity of the propagating shock wave, which is responsible for the generation of QPOs and their evolutions, at ~10 m s-1. We observe from the spectra that up to 2010 April 10, the object was in a hard state. After that, it went to the hard-intermediate state. On April 18, it had a state transition and went to the soft-intermediate state. On May 15, another state transition was observed and the source moved to the soft state.
Conclusions. As in the previously fitted outburst sources, this source also showed the tendency of a rapidly increasing QPO frequency () on a viscous time scale, which can be modeled quite accurately. In this case, the shock seems to have disappeared at about ~172 Schwarzschild radii, unlike in the 2005 outburst of GRO J1655-40, where the shock disappeared behind the horizon.
Key words: accretion, accretion disks / black hole physics / Shock waves / stars: individual: GX 339-4 / X-rays: binaries
© ESO, 2010