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    X-ray emission from the Sombrero galaxy: discrete sources

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    We present a study of discrete X-ray sources in and around the bulge-dominated, massive Sa galaxy, Sombrero (M104), based on new and archival Chandra observations with a total exposure of ~200 ks. With a detection limit of L_X = 1E37 erg/s and a field of view covering a galactocentric radius of ~30 kpc (11.5 arcminute), 383 sources are detected. Cross-correlation with Spitler et al.'s catalogue of Sombrero globular clusters (GCs) identified from HST/ACS observations reveals 41 X-rays sources in GCs, presumably low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs). We quantify the differential luminosity functions (LFs) for both the detected GC and field LMXBs, whose power-low indices (~1.1 for the GC-LF and ~1.6 for field-LF) are consistent with previous studies for elliptical galaxies. With precise sky positions of the GCs without a detected X-ray source, we further quantify, through a fluctuation analysis, the GC LF at fainter luminosities down to 1E35 erg/s. The derived index rules out a faint-end slope flatter than 1.1 at a 2 sigma significance, contrary to recent findings in several elliptical galaxies and the bulge of M31. On the other hand, the 2-6 keV unresolved emission places a tight constraint on the field LF, implying a flattened index of ~1.0 below 1E37 erg/s. We also detect 101 sources in the halo of Sombrero. The presence of these sources cannot be interpreted as galactic LMXBs whose spatial distribution empirically follows the starlight. Their number is also higher than the expected number of cosmic AGNs (52+/-11 [1 sigma]) whose surface density is constrained by deep X-ray surveys. We suggest that either the cosmic X-ray background is unusually high in the direction of Sombrero, or a distinct population of X-ray sources is present in the halo of Sombrero.Comment: 11 figures, 5 tables, ApJ in pres

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