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Black hole mass estimates from soft X-ray spectra

Soria, R; Kuncic, Z; (2008) Black hole mass estimates from soft X-ray spectra. ADV SPACE RES , 42 (3) pp. 517-522. 10.1016/j.asr.2007.03.099.

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In the absence of direct kinematic measurements, the mass of an accreting black hole is sometimes inferred from tile X-ray spectral parameters of its accretion disk; specifically, from the temperature and normalization of a disk-blackbody model fit. Suitable corrections have to be introduced when the accretion rate approaches or exceeds the Eddington limit. We summarize phenomenological models that can explain the very high state, with apparently higher disk temperatures and lower inner-disk radii. Conversely, ultraluminous X-ray sources often contain cooler disks with large characteristic radii. We introduce another phenomenological model for this accretion state. We argue that a standard disk dominates the radiative output for radii larger than a characteristic transition radius R-c similar to <(m)over dot> x R-ISCO, where th is the accretion rate in Ecidington units and R-ISCO is the innermost stable orbit. For R-ISCO < R < R-c, most of the accretion power is released via non-thermal processes. We predict the location of such sources in a luminosity-temperature plot. We conclude that BHs with masses similar to 50-100M(circle dot) accreting at th similar to 10-20 may explain the X-ray properties of many ULXs. (c) 2007 COSPAR. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Type: Article
Title: Black hole mass estimates from soft X-ray spectra
DOI: 10.1016/j.asr.2007.03.099
Keywords: black holes, X-ray binaries, X-ray spectroscopy, X-ray sources, infall, accretion and accretion disks, XMM-NEWTON OBSERVATIONS, ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI, NEARBY SPIRAL GALAXIES, HIGH-STATE, ACCRETION, BINARIES, TEMPERATURE, ENERGETICS, MODELS, EXCESS
UCL classification: UCL > School of BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > School of BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Space and Climate Physics
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/54675
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