Volume 600, April 2017
|Number of page(s)||8|
|Section||Stellar structure and evolution|
|Published online||28 March 2017|
An investigation into the fraction of particle accelerators among colliding-wind binaries
Towards an extension of the catalogue
1 Space sciences, Technologies and Astrophysics Research (STAR) Institute, University of Liège, Quartier Agora, 19c, Allée du 6 Août, B5c, 4000 Sart Tilman, Belgium
2 Instituto Argentino de Radioastronomía, CCT-La Plata, CONICET, 1900FWA La Plata, Argentina
3 Facultad de Ciencias Astronómicas y Geofísicas, Universidad Nacional de La Plata, Paseo del Bosque s/n, 1900 La Plata, Argentina
Received: 14 June 2016
Accepted: 23 January 2017
Particle-accelerating colliding-wind binaries (PACWBs) are multiple systems made of early-type stars able to accelerate particles up to relativistic velocities. The relativistic particles can interact with different fields (magnetic or radiation) in the colliding-wind region and produce non-thermal emission. In many cases, non-thermal synchrotron radiation might be observable and thus constitute an indicator of the existence of a relativistic particle population in these multiple systems. To date, the catalogue of PACWBs includes about 40 objects spread over many stellar types and evolutionary stages, with no clear trend pointing to privileged subclasses of objects likely to accelerate particles. This paper aims at discussing critically some criteria for selecting new candidates among massive binaries. The subsequent search for non-thermal radiation in these objects is expected to lead to new detections of particle accelerators. On the basis of this discussion, some broad ideas for observation strategies are formulated. At this stage of the investigation of PACWBs, there is no clear reason to consider particle acceleration in massive binaries as an anomaly or even as a rare phenomenon. We therefore consider that several PACWBs will be detected in the forthcoming years, essentially using sensitive radio interferometers which are capable of measuring synchrotron emission from colliding-wind binaries. Prospects for high-energy detections are also briefly addressed.
Key words: stars: massive / binaries: general / radiation mechanisms: non-thermal / acceleration of particles / radio continuum: stars
© ESO, 2017
Current usage metrics show cumulative count of Article Views (full-text article views including HTML views, PDF and ePub downloads, according to the available data) and Abstracts Views on Vision4Press platform.
Data correspond to usage on the plateform after 2015. The current usage metrics is available 48-96 hours after online publication and is updated daily on week days.
Initial download of the metrics may take a while.