PI: Stefanie Wachter, SIRTF Science Center, firstname.lastname@example.org
Address: IPAC/Caltech, M/S 220-6, 1200 E. California Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA
CoI: Philip Kaaret, CfA
CoI: Stephane Corbel, CEA, France
CoI: Donald W. Hoard, SIRTF Science Center
Title: The Outburst Mechanism of X-ray Transients: Optical/X-ray Monitoring of X1608-52
Abstract: Soft X-ray transients (SXTs) are interacting binaries where matter donated by a late-type star is accreted onto a neutron star or black hole. SXTs sporadically undergo drastic outbursts characterized by an increase of several orders of magnitude in the X-ray and optical luminosities. This provides the opportunity to study the physical parameters of the accretion flow for a large range in mass transfer rates. The X-ray emission is thought to reflect the accretion rate through the \it inner edge of the accretion disk while the optical lightcurve traces the physical conditions at the \it outer disk. We propose to continue our monitoring campaign of the counterpart of the neutron star SXT X1608-52 (which is currently undergoing an unexpected outburst) in order to study the development of its optical and X-ray flux before, during, and after an outburst in coordination with X-ray satellite observations.
National Optical Astronomy Observatory, 950 North Cherry Avenue, P.O. Box 26732, Tucson, Arizona 85726, Phone: (520) 318-8000, Fax: (520) 318-8360