High-energy observations of PSR B1259-63/LS 2883 through the 2014 periastron passage: Connecting x-rays to the GeV Flare

P. H.T. Tam, K. L. Li, J. Takata, A. T. Okazaki, C. Y. Hui, A. K.H. Kong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The binary system PSR B1259-63/LS 2883 is well sampled in radio, X-rays, and TeV γ-rays, and shows orbital-phase- dependent variability in these frequencies. The first detection of GeV γ-rays from the system was made around the 2010 periastron passage. In this Letter, we present an analysis of X-ray and γ-ray data obtained by the Swift/XRT, NuSTAR/FPM, and Fermi/LAT, through the recent periastron passage which occurred on 2014 May 4. While PSR B1259-63/LS 2883 was not detected by the Large Area Telescope before and during this passage, we show that the GeV flares occurred at a similar orbital phase as in early 2011, thus establishing the repetitive nature of the post-periastron GeV flares. Multiple flares each lasting for a few days have been observed and short-term variability is seen as well. We also found X-ray flux variation contemporaneous with the GeV flare for the first time. Strong evidence of the keV-to-GeV connection came from the broadband high-energy spectra, which we interpret as synchrotron radiation from the shocked pulsar wind.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberL26
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Volume798
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Jan 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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