105 research outputs found

    Point X-ray Sources in Elliptical Galaxies

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    We analyze the upper-end X-ray luminosity function (XLF) observed in elliptical galaxies for point sources. We propose that the observed XLF is dominated by transient BH systems in outburst and the XLF shape reflects the black hole (BH) mass spectrum among old X-ray transients. The BH mass spectrum -- XLF connection depends on a weighting factor that is related to the transient duty cycle and depends on the host-galaxy age, the BH mass and the donor type (main sequence, red giant, or white dwarf). We argue that the assumption of a constant duty cycle for all systems leads to results inconsistent with current observations. The type of dominant donors in the upper-end XLF depends on what type of magnetic braking operates: in the case of ``standard'' magnetic braking, BH X-ray binaries with red-giant donors dominate, and in the case of weaker magnetic braking prescriptions main sequence donors dominate.Comment: 4 pages, 2 figures, to appear in the Proceedings of the IAU Symposium No. 23
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