Neutron star mass estimates from gamma-ray eclipses in spider millisecond pulsar binaries - École polytechnique Access content directly
Journal Articles Nature Astron. Year : 2023

Neutron star mass estimates from gamma-ray eclipses in spider millisecond pulsar binaries

B. Bhattacharyya
  • Function : Author
W. Chen
  • Function : Author
J. Deneva
  • Function : Author
V.S. Dhillon
  • Function : Author
M.R. Kennedy
  • Function : Author
M. Kramer
  • Function : Author
A.G. Lyne
  • Function : Author
D. Mata Sánchez
  • Function : Author
L. Nieder
  • Function : Author
C. Phillips
  • Function : Author
S.M. Ransom
  • Function : Author
P.S. Ray
  • Function : Author
M.S.E. Roberts
  • Function : Author
J. Roy
  • Function : Author
D.A. Smith
  • Function : Author
R. Spiewak
  • Function : Author
B.W. Stappers
  • Function : Author
S. Tabassum
  • Function : Author
G. Voisin
  • Function : Author

Abstract

Reliable neutron star mass measurements are key to determining the equation-of-state of cold nuclear matter, but these are rare. "Black Widows" and "Redbacks" are compact binaries consisting of millisecond pulsars and semi-degenerate companion stars. Spectroscopy of the optically bright companions can determine their radial velocities, providing inclination-dependent pulsar mass estimates. While inclinations can be inferred from subtle features in optical light curves, such estimates may be systematically biased due to incomplete heating models and poorly-understood variability. Using data from the Fermi Large Area Telescope, we have searched for gamma-ray eclipses from 49 spider systems, discovering significant eclipses in 7 systems, including the prototypical black widow PSR B1957$+$20. Gamma-ray eclipses require direct occultation of the pulsar by the companion, and so the detection, or significant exclusion, of a gamma-ray eclipse strictly limits the binary inclination angle, providing new robust, model-independent pulsar mass constraints. For PSR B1957$+$20, the eclipse implies a much lighter pulsar ($M_{\rm psr} = 1.81 \pm 0.07\,M_{\odot}$) than inferred from optical light curve modelling.
Fichier principal
Vignette du fichier
s41550-022-01874-x.pdf (2.13 Mo) Télécharger le fichier
Origin : Publisher files allowed on an open archive
Licence : CC BY - Attribution

Dates and versions

hal-03960032 , version 1 (28-01-2023)

Identifiers

Cite

C.J. Clark, M. Kerr, E.D. Barr, B. Bhattacharyya, R.P. Breton, et al.. Neutron star mass estimates from gamma-ray eclipses in spider millisecond pulsar binaries. Nature Astron., 2023, 7 (4), pp.451-462. ⟨10.1038/s41550-022-01874-x⟩. ⟨hal-03960032⟩
52 View
18 Download

Altmetric

Share

Gmail Facebook X LinkedIn More