Volume 634, February 2020
|Number of page(s)||6|
|Section||Stellar structure and evolution|
|Published online||13 February 2020|
Rapid spectral transition of the black hole binary V404 Cygni
Centro de Astrobiología – Departamento de Astrofísica (CSIC-INTA), Camino Bajo del Castillo s/n, 28692 Villanueva de la Cañada, Spain
2 European Space Astronomy Centre (ESA/ESAC), Science Operations Department, 28691 Villanueva de la Cañada, Madrid, Spain
3 Finnish Centre for Astronomy with ESO (FINCA), University of Turku, 20014 Turku, Finland
4 University of Oxford, Department of Physics, Astrophysics, Denys Wilkinson Building, Keble Road, Oxford OX1 3RH, UK
5 Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Turku, 20014 Turku, Finland
6 Nordita, KTH Royal Institute of Technology and Stockholm University, Roslagstullsbacken 23, 10691 Stockholm, Sweden
7 Space Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Profsoyuznaya Str. 84/32, 117997 Moscow, Russia
Accepted: 10 January 2020
During the June 2015 outburst of the black hole binary V404 Cyg, rapid changes in the X-ray brightness and spectra were common. The INTEGRAL monitoring campaign detected spectacular Eddington-limited X-ray flares, but also rapid variations at much lower flux levels. On 2015 June 21 at 20 h 50 min, the 3–10 keV JEM-X data as well as simultaneous optical data started to display a gradual brightening from one of these low-flux states. This was followed 15 min later by an order-of-magnitude increase of flux in the 20–40 keV IBIS/ISGRI light curve in just 15 s. The best-fitting model for both the pre- and post-transition spectra required a Compton-thick partially covering absorber. The absorber parameters remained constant, but the spectral slope varied significantly during the event, with the photon index decreasing from Γ ≈ 3.7 to Γ ≈ 2.3. We propose that the rapid 20–40 keV flux increase was either caused by a spectral state transition that was hidden from our direct view, or that there was a sudden reduction in the amount of Compton down-scattering of the primary X-ray emission in the disk outflow.
Key words: accretion, accretion disks / black hole physics / X-rays: binaries / X-rays: individuals: V404 Cyg
© ESO 2020
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