Tracing a Z-track in the M 31 X-ray binary RX J0042.6+4115
The Department of Physics and Astronomy, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes, MK7 6BT, UK
2 The Department of Physics and Astronomy, The University of Leicester, Leicester, LE1 7RH, UK
Corresponding author: R. Barnard, email@example.com
Accepted: 16 September 2003
Four XMM-Newton observations of the core of M 31, spaced at 6 month intervals, show that the brightest point X-ray source, RX J0042.6+4115, has a 0.4–10 keV luminosity of ~ 1038 erg s-1, and exhibits significant variability in intensity and X-ray spectrum over a time scale of ~100 s including hard flares; such behaviour is only observed in Z-sources and transient black hole binaries in our Galaxy. The lightcurves, X-ray spectra and hardness-intensity data from the four XMM-Newton observations all strongly suggest that it is a Z-source, bringing the total number of known Z-sources to nine.
Key words: X-rays: general / galaxies: individual: M 31 / X-rays: binaries
© ESO, 2003