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Preprint 15/06

Observational manifestations of the change in the tilt of the accretion disk to the orbital plane in her X-1/HZ her with phase of its 35-day period

D. Klochkov (1), N. Shakura (2), K. Postnov (2), R. Staubert (1), J. Wilms (3); N. Ketsaris (2)

(1) Institut für Astronomie und Astrophysik, University of Tübingen, Sand 1 72076 Tübingen, Germany
(2) Sternberg Astronomical Institute, Universitetskii pr. 13, Moscow, 119992 Russia
(3) Department of Physics, University of Warwick, Coventry, CV8, 1GA, UK

Astronomy Letters 32 804-815 (2006)

Abstract. We analyze and interpret the RXTE/ASM X-ray light curves for the close binary system Her X-1/HZ Her obtained from February 1996 to September 2004. Some of the features found previously in the averaged X-ray light curves are confirmed by the new RXTE/ASM data. In particular, the anomalous dips and post-eclipse recoveries in two successive orbits in the short-on state are clearly distinguishable and are stable features of the X-ray light curves. We argue that to account for these features, the tilt of the accretion disk to the orbital plane must be assumed to change with phase of the 35-day period. We present a numerical model that can reproduce the observed features of the light curves.
Key words: accretion, accretion disks, stars, binary systems

Preprint (636 kb PDF file including figures)
Astrophysics (astro-ph): astro-ph/0609276

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