Name: Jayashree Roy
Affiliation: IUCAA Pune
Conference ID : ASI2022_557
Title : Detection of nearly periodic spin period reversals in Vela X-1 on long time-scales: inkling of solar-like cycle in the donor sta
Authors : Amar Deo Chandra, Jayashree Roy, Prahlad C. Agrawal, Manojendu Choudhury
Abstract Type: Poster
Abstract Category : Stars, ISM and Galaxy
Abstract : We explore the long-term evolution of the spin period of the High Mass X-ray Binary (HMXB) pulsar Vela X-1 over a period of 46 yr. Our analysis indicates nearly periodic variations in the spin period of the pulsar on time-scales of about 5.9 yr. There is suggestion of an overall spin-down behaviour of the pulsar though it is noticed that the source appears to stay near its equilibrium period 283.4 s since MJD 51000, with rather erratic spin-up/spin-down episodes around this value. Our study suggests nearly cyclic turnover in the spin behaviour of the pulsar from spin-up to spin-down regimes on time-scales of about 17-19 yr. To our knowledge this is the first report of periodic variation in the spin behaviour of a wind-fed accreting pulsar. We also observe erratic episodes of spin-up and spin-down behaviour on relatively shorter time-scales which is a well-known archetype of this wind-fed X-ray pulsar. We investigate whether nearly periodic long-term spin period changes in the pulsar can be explained by using known mechanisms of torque reversals in the accretion-powered neutron stars. It appears that changes in the accretion environment of the pulsar using current ideas can probably lead to long-term spin period changes in this X-ray pulsar.