XMM-Newton Survey of Local O VII Absorption Lines in the Spectra of Galactic X-Ray Sources

Authors: Luo, Yang; Fang, Taotao; Ma, Renyi

Abstract: The detection of highly ionized metal absorption lines in the X-ray spectra of the Galactic X-ray binaries (XRBs) implies the distribution of hot gas along the sightline toward the background sources. However, the origin of this hot gas is still unclear: it can arise in the hot interstellar medium (ISM), or is intrinsic to the XRBs. In this paper, we present an XMM-Newton survey of the O VII absorption lines in the spectra of Galactic XRBs. A total of 33 XRBs were selected, with 29 low-mass XRBs and 4 high-mass XRBs. At a more than 3σ threshold, O VII absorption line was detected in 16 targets, among which 4 were newly discovered in this work. The average line equivalent width is centered around ∼20 mÅ. Additionally, we do not find strong correlations between the O VII EWs and the Galactic neutral absorption N H, the Galactic coordinates, or the distance of background targets. Such non-correlation may suggest contamination of the circumstellar material, or a lack of constraints on the line Doppler-b parameter. We also find that regardless of the direction of the XRBs, the O VII absorption lines are always detected when the flux of the background XRBs reaches a certain level, suggesting a uniform distribution of this hot gas. We estimate a ratio of 0.004–0.4 between the hot and neutral phases of the ISM. This is the second paper in the series following Fang et al. (2015), in which we focused on the local O VII absorption lines detected in the background AGN spectra. Detailed modeling of the hot ISM distribution will be investigated in a future paper.