Volume 647, March 2021
|Number of page(s)||7|
|Section||Stellar structure and evolution|
|Published online||05 March 2021|
Mechanical model of a boundary layer for the parallel tracks of kilohertz quasi-periodic oscillations in accreting neutron stars
Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Turku, 20014 Turku, Finland
2 Sternberg Astronomical Institute, Moscow State University, Universitetsky pr. 13, 119234 Moscow, Russia
3 Space Research Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, Profsoyuznaya 84/32, 117997 Moscow, Russia
4 Nordita, KTH Royal Institute of Technology and Stockholm University, Roslagstullsbacken 23, 10691 Stockholm, Sweden
Accepted: 31 December 2020
Kilohertz-scale quasi-periodic oscillations (kHz QPOs) are a distinct feature of the variability of neutron star low-mass X-ray binaries. Among all the variability modes, they are especially interesting as a probe for the innermost parts of the accretion flow, including the accretion boundary layer (BL) on the surface of the neutron star. All the existing models of kHz QPOs explain only part of their rich phenomenology. Here, we show that some of their properties can be explained by a very simple model of the BL that is spun up by accreting rapidly rotating matter from the disk and spun down by the interaction with the neutron star. In particular, if the characteristic time scales for the mass and the angular momentum transfer from the BL to the star are of the same order of magnitude, our model naturally reproduces the so-called parallel tracks effect, where the QPO frequency is correlated with luminosity at time scales of hours but becomes uncorrelated at time scales of days. The closeness of the two time scales responsible for mass and angular momentum exchange between the BL and the star is an expected outcome of the radial structure of the BL.
Key words: accretion / accretion disks / stars: neutron / stars: oscillations / X-rays: binaries
© ESO 2021
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.