The Twentyone Black Hole Binaries

The names and some selected properties of the 21 black hole binaries are given in Table 1. The binaries are ordered by right ascension (column 1). Column 2 gives the common name of the source (e.g., LMC X-3) or the prefix to the coordinate name that identifies the discovery mission (e.g., XTE J, where a "J" indicates that the coordinate epoch is J2000). For X-ray novae, the third column gives the year of discovery and the number of outbursts that have been observed. The spectral type of the secondary star is given in column 4. Extensive optical observations of this star yield the key dynamical data summarized respectively in the last three columns: the orbital period, the mass function, and the black hole mass. Additional data on black hole binaries are given in Tables 4.1 & 4.2 of MR06.

An observational quantity of special interest is the mass function, f (M) = PorbKf/2nG = M1sin3i/(1 + q)2 (see Table 1, column 6). The observables on the left side of this equation are the orbital period Porb and the half-amplitude

Table 1. Twenty-one confirmed stellar black holes"

Coordinate

Commonb

Year c

Spec.

orb

f(M)

Mi

Name

Name/Prefix

(hr)

(M©)

(M©)

0133+30d

M33 X-7

-

O

82.9

0.41±0.08

>8

0422+32

(GRO J)

1992/1

M2V

5.1

1.19±0.02

3.7-5.0

0538-641

LMC X-3

-

B3V

40.9

2.3±0.3

5.9-9.2

0540-697

LMC X-1

-

O7III

93.8d

0.13±0.05e

4.0-10.0:/

0620-003

(A)

1975/1»

K4V

7.8

2.72±0.06

8.7-12.9

1009-45

(GRS)

1993/1

K7/M0V

6.8

3.17±0.12

3.6-4.7:e

1118+480

(XTE J)

2000/2

K5/M0V

4.1

6.1±0.3

6.5-7.2

1124-684

Nova Mus 91

1991/1

K3/K5V

10.4

3.01±0.15

6.5-8.2

1354-64

(GS)

1987/2

GIV

61.1»

5.75±0.30

-

1543-475

(4U)

1971/4

A2V

26.8

0.25±0.01

8.4-10.4

1550-564

(XTE J)

1998/5

G8/K8IV

37.0

6.86±0.71

8.4-10.8

1650-500

(XTE J)

2001/1

K4V

7.7

2.73±0.56

-

1655-40

(GRO J)

1994/3

F3/F5IV

62.9

2.73±0.09

6.0-6.6

1659-487

GX 339-4

1972/10

-

42.1j,

k 5.8±0.5

-

1705-250

Nova Oph 77

1977/1

K3/7V

12.5

4.86±0.13

5.6-8.3

1819.3-2525

V4641 Sgr

1999/4

B9III

67.6

3.13±0.13

6.8-7.4

1859+226

(XTE J)

1999/1

-

9.2 :

e 7.4±1.1:e

7.6-12.0:e

1915+105

(GRS)

1992/Qh

K/MIII

804.0

9.5±3.0

10.0-18.0

1956+350

Cyg X-1

-

O9.7Iab

134.4

0.244±0.005

6.8-13.3

2000+251

(GS)

1988/1

K3/K7V

8.3

5.01±0.12

7.1-7.8

2023+338

V404 Cyg

1989/1»

K0III

155.3

6.08±0.06

10.1-13.4

"See Remillard & McClintock 2006 plus additional reference given below. bA prefix to a coordinate name is enclosed in parentheses.

The presence/absence of a "J" indicates that the epoch of the coordinates is J2000/B1950.

cYear of initial X-ray outburst/total number of X-ray outbursts.

^Preliminary results based on a private communication by J. Orosz; also Pietsch et al. 2006.

ePeriod and f(M) corrections by AM Levine and D Lin, private communication. f Colon denotes uncertain value or range.

g Additional outbursts in optical archives: A 0620 (1917) and V404 Cyg (1938, 1956). h "Q" denotes quasi-persistent intervals (e.g., decades), rather than typical outburst.

of the velocity curve of the secondary K2. On the right, the quantity of greatest interest is Mi, the mass of the black hole primary (given in column 7); the other parameters are the orbital inclination angle i and the mass ratio q = M2/M1, where M2 is the mass of the secondary. The value of f (M) can be determined by simply measuring the radial velocity curve of the secondary star, and it corresponds to the absolute minimum allowable mass of the compact object.

An inspection of Table 1 shows that 15 of the 21 X-ray sources have values of f (M) that require a compact object with a mass >3 Mq. This is a widely agreed limit for the maximum stable mass of a neutron star in GR (e.g., Kalogera & Baym 1996). For the remaining five systems, some additional data

Black Hole Binaries in the Milky Way companion star accretion disk and black hole o

Mercury

XTE J1118+480 XTE J1859+226 GRS 1009-45 GRS 1124-683

GRS 1915+105

XTE J1118+480 XTE J1859+226 GRS 1009-45 GRS 1124-683

A0620—00 GRO J0422+32

GX 339-4

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