On the nature of the x-ray point source in Cassiopeia A

Umeda, Hideyuki; Nomoto, Ken’ichi; Tsuruta, Sachiko; Mineshige, Shin
June 2000
AIP Conference Proceedings;2000, Vol. 522 Issue 1, p141
Academic Journal
The Chandra First Light Observation discovered a point-like source in Cassiopeia A supernova remnant. This detection was subsequently confirmed by the analyses of the archival data from ROSAT observations. Here we compare the results from these observations with the scenarios involving both black holes (BH) and neutron stars (NS). Although the current data of Cas A point-source can be consistent with both BH and NS scenarios, future observations by the Chandra, XMM, and other satellite missions should be able to distinguish between these cases. If distinct periodicity is found, the point source definitely should be a NS. From superior spectral data to be available from these observations, the actual temperature and luminosity of the cooler component may be measured. If the measurement gives L[sup ∞]≤10[sup 33] erg s[sup -1], this will become the first concrete evidence for NS non-standard cooling. If the observed radiation does not show precise periodicity but smaller scale burst-like variability is detected, the compact source can be a BH. If superior spectral data are best fit by a two-component model with lower energy blackbody (∼0.1 keV)+steep power law, our proposed disk-corona BH accretion model will be well supported. If the source is found to be a BH, the implication is significant in the sense that this will offer the first observational evidence for BH formation through a SN explosion. © 2000 American Institute of Physics.


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