Absorption and scattering by interstellar dust in the silicon K-edge of GX 5-1
1 SRON Netherlands Institute for Space Research, Sorbonnelaan 2, 3584 CA Utrecht, The Netherlands
2 Leiden Observatory, Leiden University, PO Box 9513, 2300 RA Leiden, The Netherlands
3 Department of Earth and Space Science, Osaka University, 1-1 Machikaneyama, Toyonaka, 560-0043 Osaka, Japan
4 Debye Institute for Nanomaterials Science, Utrecht University, Universiteitsweg 99, 3584 CG Utrecht, The Netherlands
5 Astrophysikalisches Institut und Universitäts-Sternwarte (AIU), Schillergäßchen 2-3, 07745 Jena, Germany
6 Anton Pannekoek Astronomical Institute, University of Amsterdam, PO Box 94249, 1090 GE Amsterdam, The Netherlands
7 National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ), 2-21-2 Osawa, Mitaka, 181-8588 Tokyo, Japan
Received: 14 March 2016
Accepted: 14 December 2016
Context. We study the absorption and scattering of X-ray radiation by interstellar dust particles, which allows us to access the physical and chemical properties of dust. The interstellar dust composition is not well understood, especially on the densest sight lines of the Galactic plane. X-rays provide a powerful tool in this study.
Aims. We present newly acquired laboratory measurements of silicate compounds taken at the Soleil synchrotron facility in Paris using the Lucia beamline. The dust absorption profiles resulting from this campaign were used in this pilot study to model the absorption by interstellar dust along the line of sight of the low-mass X-ray binary GX 5-1.
Methods. The measured laboratory cross-sections were adapted for astrophysical data analysis and the resulting extinction profiles of the Si K-edge were implemented in the SPEX spectral fitting program. We derive the properties of the interstellar dust along the line of sight by fitting the Si K-edge seen in absorption in the spectrum of GX 5-1.
Results. We measured the hydrogen column density towards GX 5-1 to be 3.40 ± 0.1 × 1022 cm-2. The best fit of the silicon edge in the spectrum of GX 5-1 is obtained by a mixture of olivine and pyroxene. In this study, our modeling is limited to Si absorption by silicates with different Mg:Fe ratios. We obtained an abundance of silicon in dust of 4.0 ± 0.3 × 10-5 per H atom and a lower limit for total abundance, considering both gas and dust of >4.4 × 10-5 per H atom, which leads to a gas to dust ratio of >0.22. Furthermore, an enhanced scattering feature in the Si K-edge may suggest the presence of large particles along the line of sight.
Key words: astrochemistry / X-rays: binaries / dust, extinction / X-rays: individuals: GX 5-1
© ESO, 2017