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Institut für Astronomie und Astrophysik

Abteilung Astronomie

Sand 1, D-72076 Tübingen, Germany
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Preprint 03/04

Long term variability of Cygnus X-1, III. Radio-X-ray correlations

T. Gleissner (1), J. Wilms (1 and 2), G. G. Pooley (3), M. A. Nowak (4), K. Pottschmidt (5 and 6), S. Markoff (4), S. Heinz (4), M. Klein-Wolt (7), R. P. Fender (7), R. Staubert (1)

(1) Univ. Tübingen
(2) Univ. Warwick
(3) MRAO
(4) MIT
(5) MPE
(6) ISDC
(7) Univ. Amsterdam

To be published in: A&A

Abstract. Long time scale radio-X-ray correlations in black holes during the hard state have been found in many sources and there seems to emerge a universal underlying relationship which quantitatively describes this behavior. Although it would appear only natural to detect short term emission patterns in the X-ray and - with a certain time lag - in the radio, there has been little evidence for this up to now. The most prominent source for radio-X-ray correlations on short time scales (minutes) so far remains GRS 1915+105 where a single mass ejection could be detected successively in the X-ray, IR, and radio wavebands. We analyze a database of more than 4 years of simultaneous radio-X-ray data for Cygnus X-1 from the Ryle Telescope and RXTE PCA/HEXTE. We confirm the existence of a radio-X-ray correlation on long time scales, especially at hard energies. We show that apparent correlations on short time scales in the lightcurves of Cygnus X-1 are most likely the coincidental outcome of white noise statistics. Interpreting this result as a breakdown of radio-X-ray correlations on shorter time scales, this sets a limit to the speed of the jet.
Key words: black hole physics -- stars: individual: Cyg X-1 -- stars: individual: GRS~1915+105 -- X-rays: binaries -- X-rays: general

Preprint (160 kb PDF file including figures)
Astrophysics (astro-ph): astro-ph/0407070

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