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Magnetars, Gamma-ray Bursts, and Very Close Binaries

Research paper by A. I. Bogomazov, S. B. Popov

Indexed on: 20 May '09Published on: 20 May '09Published in: arXiv - Astrophysics - High Energy Astrophysical Phenomena



Abstract

We consider the possible existence of a common channel of evolution of binary systems, which results in a gamma-ray burst during the formation of a black hole or the birth of a magnetar during the formation of a neutron star. We assume that the rapid rotation of the core of a collapsing star can be explained by tidal synchronization in a very close binary. The calculated rate of formation of rapidly rotating neutron stars is qualitatively consistent with estimates of the formation rate of magnetars. However, our analysis of the binarity of newly-born compact objects with short rotational periods indicates that the fraction of binaries among them substantially exceeds the observational estimates. To bring this fraction into agreement with the statistics for magnetars, the additional velocity acquired by a magnetar during its formation must be primarily perpendicular to the orbital plane before the supernova explosion, and be large.