We report the Chandra/HRC-S and Swift/XRT observations for the 2015 outburst of the high-mass X-ray binary pulsar in the Small Magellanic Cloud, SMC X-2. While previous studies suggested that either an O star or a Be star in the field is the high-mass companion of SMC X-2, our Chandra/HRC-S image unambiguously confirms the O-type star as the true optical counterpart. Using the Swift/XRT observations, we extracted accurate orbital parameters of the pulsar binary through a time of arrivals analysis. In addition, there were two X-ray dips near the inferior conjunction, which are possibly caused by eclipses or an ionized high-density shadow wind near the companion's surface. Finally, we propose that an outflow driven by the radiation pressure from day ∼10 played an important role in the X-ray/optical evolution of the outburst.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science