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Identification of the optical counterpart of fermi black widow millisecond pulsar PSR J1544+4937

Tang, S and Kaplan, DL and Phinney, ES and Prince, TA and Breton, RP and Bellm, E and Bildsten, L and Cao, Y and Kong, AKH and Perley, DA and Sesar, B and Wolf, WM and Yen, TC (2014) Identification of the optical counterpart of fermi black widow millisecond pulsar PSR J1544+4937. The Astrophysical Journal Letters, 791 (1). ISSN 2041-8205

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We report the optical identification of the companion to the Fermi black widow millisecond pulsar PSR J1544+4937. We find a highly variable source on Keck Low Resolution Imaging Spectrometer images at the nominal pulsar position, with 2 mag variations over orbital period in the B, g, R, and I bands. The nearly achromatic light curves are difficult to explain with a simply irradiated hemisphere model, and suggest that the optical emission is dominated by a nearly isothermal hot patch on the surface of the companion facing the pulsar. We roughly constrain the distance to PSR J1544+4937 to be between 2 and 5 kpc. A more reliable distance measurement is needed in order to constrain the composition of the companion. © 2014. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 0201 Astronomical And Space Sciences
Subjects: Q Science > QB Astronomy
Q Science > QC Physics
Q Science > QD Chemistry
Divisions: Astrophysics Research Institute
Publisher: American Astronomical Society
Date Deposited: 23 May 2017 09:36
Last Modified: 23 May 2017 09:36
DOI or Identification number: 10.1088/2041-8205/791/1/L5
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/6494

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