Fifty M31 black hole candidates identified by Chandra and XMM-Newton.
BARNARD R., GARCIA M.R., PRIMINI F. and MURRAY S.S.
Abstract (from CDS):
Over approximately the last five years, we have identified ∼35 black hole candidates (BHCs) in M31 from their X-ray spectra. Our BHCs exhibited 0.3-10 keV spectra consistent with the X-ray binary (XB) hard state at luminosities that are above the upper limit for neutron star (NS) XBs. When our BHC spectra were modeled with a disk blackbody + blackbody model for comparison with bright NS XBs, we found that the BHCs inhabited a different parameter space than the NS XBs. However, BH XBs may also exhibit a thermally dominated (TD) state that has never been seen in NS XBs; this TD state is most often observed in X-ray transients. We examined the ∼50 X-ray transients in our Chandra survey of M31 and found 13 with spectra suitable for analysis. We also examined two BHCs outside the field of view of our survey in the globular clusters B045 and B375. We have 42 strong BHCs and 8 plausible BHCs that may benefit from further observation. Of our 15 BHCs in globular clusters, 12 differ from NS spectra by >5σ. Due to improvements in our analysis, we have upgraded 10 previously identified plausible BHCs to strong BHCs. The mean maximum duty cycle of the 33 X-ray transients within 6' of M31* is 0.13; we estimate that >40% of the XBs in this region contain BH accretors. Remarkably, we estimate that BHCs contribute >90% of those XBs >1038 erg/s.
stars: black holes - X-rays: binaries - X-rays: general