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Revealing the Nature of the Highly Obscured Galactic Source IGR J16318-4848*

  • S. Chaty (a1) (a2) and P. Filliatre (a2) (a3)

Abstract

The X-ray source IGR J16318-4848 was the first source discovered by INTEGRAL on 2003, January 29. We carried out optical and near-infrared (NIR) observations at the European Southern Observatory (ESO La Silla) in the course of a Target of Opportunity (ToO) programme. We discovered the optical counterpart and confirmed an already proposed NIR candidate. NIR spectroscopy revealed a large amount of emission lines, including forbidden iron lines and P-Cygni profiles. The spectral energy distribution of the source points towards a high luminosity and a high temperature, with an absorption greater than the interstellar absorption, but two orders of magnitude lower than the X-ray absorption. We show that the source is an High Mass X-ray binary (HMXB) at a distance between ~ 1 and ~ 6 kpc, the mass donor being an early-type star, probably a sgB[e] star, surrounded by a rich and absorbing circumstellar material. This would make the second High Mass X-ray Binary (HMXB) with a sgB[e] star after CI Cam, indicating that a new class of strongly absorbed X-ray binaries is being unveiled by INTEGRAL.

Resumen

La fuente de rayos X IGR J16318 - 4848 fue la primera fuente descubierta por INTEGRAL el 29 de enero. Llevamos a cabo observaciones en el óptico y el infrarrojo cercano (NIR) en el European South Observatory (ESO, La Silla) como parte de un programa “de oportunidad” (ToO). Descubrimos la contraparte óptica y confirmamos el candidato NIR que ya había sido propuesto. La espectroscopía NIR reveló una gran cantidad de líneas de emisión y perfiles P-Cygni. La distribución de la energía espectral de la fuente apunta hacia una luminosidad y temperatura altas con una absorción mayor que la absorción interestelar, pero dos órdenes de magnitud menor que la absorción de rayos X. Mostramos que la fuente es una Binaria de rayos X de Masa Alta (HMXB) a una distancia comprendida entre ˜1 y ˜6 kpc, siendo el donador de masa una estrella de tipo temprano, probablemente una estrella sgB[e], rodeada por material circunestelar rico y absorbente. Esta sería la segunda HMXB con una estrella sgB[e] después de CI Cam en el caso de que una nueva clase de binarias de rayos X fuertemente absorbente esté siendo descubierta por INTEGRAL.

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Footnotes

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*

Based on observations collected at the European Southern Observatory, Chile (observing proposal ESO N° 70.D-0340).

Footnotes

References

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Courvoisier, T., Beckmann, V., Bourban, G. et al. 2000 IAU Circ, 8063
Filliatre, P., Chaty, S., 2004, in prep.
Matt, G. & Guainazzi, M. 2003, MNRAS, 341, L13
Walter, R. et al. 2003, A&A, 411, L427

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