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journal id: "astrophysicalxjournal"
| Author||A. Patruno|
|Title||The accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar IGR J00291+5934: evidence for a long timescale spin evolution|
|Faculty||Faculty of Science|
|Institute/dept.||FNWI: Astronomical Institute Anton Pannekoek (IAP)|
|Abstract||Accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars like IGR J00291+5934 are important because they can be used to test theories of pulsar formation and evolution. They give also the possibility of constraining gravitational wave emission theories and the equation of state of ultra-dense matter. Particularly crucial to our understanding is the measurement of the long-term spin evolution of the accreting neutron star. An open question is whether these accreting pulsars are spinning up during an outburst and spinning down in quiescence as predicted by the recycling scenario. Until now it has been very difficult to measure torques, due to the presence of fluctuations in the pulse phases that compromise their measurements with standard coherent timing techniques. By applying a new method, I am now able to measure a spin-up during an outburst and a spin-down during quiescence. I ascribe the spin-up ((v) over dot(su) = 5.1(3) x 10(-1)3 Hz s(-1)) to accretion torques and the spin-down ((v) over dot(sd) - 3.0(8) x 10(-1)5 Hz s(-1)) to magneto-dipole torques, as those observed in radio pulsars. Both values fit in the recycling scenario and I infer the existence of a magnetic field for the pulsar of B similar or equal to 2 x 10(8) G. No evidence for an enhanced spin-down due to gravitational wave emission is found. The accretion torques are smaller than previously reported, and there is strong evidence for an ordered process that is present in all outbursts that might be connected with a motion of the hot spot on the neutron star surface.|
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