External Shock Model for the Large‐Scale, Relativistic X‐Ray Jets from the Microquasar XTE J1550−564

X. Y. Wang, Z. G. Dai, T. Lu
2003 Astrophysical Journal  
Large-scale, decelerating, relativistic X-ray jets due to material ejected from the black-hole candidate X-ray transient and microquasar XTE J1550-564 has been recently discovered with Chandra by Corbel et al. (2002). We find that the dynamical evolution of the eastern jet at the late time is consistent with the well-known Sedov evolutionary phase. A trans-relativistic external shock dynamic model by analogy with the evolution of gamma-ray burst remnants, is shown to be able to fit the
more » ... to fit the observation data reasonably well. The inferred interstellar medium density around the source is well below the canonical value $n_ISM \sim 1 cm^{-3}$. We find that the emission from the continuously shocked interstellar medium (forward shock region) decays too slowly to be a viable mechanism for the eastern X-ray jet. However, the rapidly fading X-ray emission can be interpreted as synchrotron radiation from the non-thermal electrons in the adiabatically expanding ejecta. These electrons were accelerated by the reverse shock (moving back into the ejecta) which becomes important when the inertia of the swept external matter leads to an appreciable slowing down of the original ejecta. To ensure the dominance of the emission from the shocked ejecta over that from the forward shock region during the period of the observations, the magnetic field and electron energy fractions in the forward shock region must be far below equipartition. Future continuous, follow-up multi-wavelength observations of new ejection events from microquasars up to the significant deceleration phase should provide more valuable insight into the nature of the interaction between the jets and external medium.
doi:10.1086/375638 fatcat:7fzkfemyqveixn6o2mhfsx4pvm