We report our recent Swift, NuSTAR, and XMM-Newton X-ray and Lijiang optical observations on PSR J2032+4127/MT91 213, the γ-ray binary candidate with a period of 45-50 years. The coming periastron of the system was predicted to be in 2017 November, around which high-energy flares from keV to TeV are expected. Recent studies with Chandra and Swift X-ray observations taken in 2015/2016 showed that its X-ray emission has been brighter by a factors of ∼10 than that before 2013, probably revealing some ongoing activities between the pulsar wind and the stellar wind. Our new Swift/XRT lightcurve shows no strong evidence of a single vigorous brightening trend, but rather several strong X-ray flares on weekly to monthly timescales with a slowly brightening baseline, namely the low state. The NuSTAR and XMM-Newton observations taken during the flaring and the low states, respectively, show a denser environment and a softer power-law index during the flaring state, implying that the pulsar wind interacted with the stronger stellar winds of the companion to produce the flares. These precursors would be crucial in studying the predicted giant outburst from this extreme γ-ray binary during the periastron passage in late 2017.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science