NICER detection of 9.29 s pulsations from RX J0209.6-7427

W. Iwakiri, M. T. Wolff, G. Vasilopoulos, K. Gendreau, Z. Arzoumanian, C. Markwardt, T. E. Strohmayer, P. S. Ray, D. Altamirano, T. Mihara, H. Negoro, S. Guillot, G. K. Jaisawal

    Research output: Other contributionNet publication - Internet publicationResearch


    MAXI J0206-749 is a hard X-ray transient detected by MAXI/GSC (ATel #13300) in the direction of the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC) wing. Follow-up Swift/XRT observations (ATel #13303) identified MAXI J0206-749 with the HMXB RX J0209.6-7427. The short (100s) XRT observation did not show any significant variability (ATel #13303). The last known outburst of the system occurred in 1993 November and was detected by ROSAT PSPC (Kahabka & Hilker 2005). The 1993 outburst reached a luminosity of 1038 erg/s (0.1-2.4 keV band) and lasted for approximately one month.On 2019 November 21, NICER began observations of this target. At the time of writing, a total of 2.354 ks of exposure have been obtained. The mean 0.2-10 keV source count rate is ~77 cts/sec. Pulsation searches reveal a strong 9.29 s periodicity that is visually apparent in the raw data. The fractional pulsed amplitude is 34% (0.4-8 keV). This makes the system only the second confirmed pulsar in the Magellanic Cloud bridge. The NICER spectrum between 0.5 and 10 keV is consistent with a mildly absorbed black body at low energies (kT = 0.159±0.006 keV; hydrogen column density 5.1±1.4×1020 cm-2) plus a power-law continuum with spectral index 0.78(±0.01), giving a flux in the 0.5-10 keV band of 3.7×10-10 erg cm-2 s-1. NICER will continue to monitor the outburst from this source.NICER is a 0.2-12 keV X-ray telescope operating on the International Space Station. The NICER mission and portions of the NICER science team activities are funded by NASA.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication date22 Nov 2019
    Publication statusPublished - 22 Nov 2019
    SeriesThe Astronomer's telegram
    NumberATel #13309


    • Transient
    • Pulsar


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