AAS Meeting #194 - Chicago, Illinois, May/June 1999
Session 29. White Dwarfs, Neutron Stars and Pulsars
Oral, Monday, May 31, 1999, 2:00-3:30pm, International Ballroom North

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[29.01] Spin Down of Oscillations During an X-ray Burst

T.E. Strohmayer (NASA/GSFC)

We report on a study with the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) of the time dependence of the oscillation frequency detected during X-ray bursts from the low mass X-ray binary (LMXB) 4U 1636-53. We find in one burst a unique episode of spin down in the cooling tail which is correlated with the ocurrence of extended emission with a characteristic decay timescale much longer than the decay times of other bursts from the same source. This is the first evidence for spin down of the burst oscillation frequency in the cooling tail of an X-ray burst. We interpret the spin down episode in the context of an angular momentum conserving thermonuclear shell, which is re-expanded and therefore spun down by an additional thermonuclear energy release which is also responsible for the long lived X-ray tail. We present both time resolved energy and Fourier power spectra during this burst and compare them with results from other bursts from 4U 1636-53 as well as bursts from other sources.

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