AAS 204th Meeting, June 2004
Session 49 X-ray Binary and ULX Populations in Nearby Galaxies
Topical Session, Wednesday, June 2, 2004, 8:30-10:00am, 10:45am-12:30pm, 2:30-4:00pm, 4:15-6:00pm, 601

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[49.04] Observations of Ultra-Luminous X-ray Sources, and Implications

E. J. M. Colbert (CUA)

I will review observations of Ultra-Luminous X-ray Sources (ULXs; Lx > 1E39 erg/s), in particular those observations that have helped reveal the nature of these curious objects. Some recent observations suggest that ULXs are a heterogenous class. Although ULX phenomenology is not fully understood, I will present some examples from the (possibly overlapping) sub-classes. Since ULXs are the most luminous objects in starburst galaxies, they, and ``normal'' luminous black-hole high-mass X-ray binaries are intimately tied to the global galaxian X-ray-star-formation connection. Further work is needed to understand how ULXs form, and how they are associated with the putative population of intermediate-mass black holes.

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