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A superburst from 4U 1254-69

A superburst from 4U 1254-69

Publication date: 01 December 2003

Authors: in't Zand, J. J. M, et al.

Journal: Astronomy & Astrophysics
Volume: 411
Page: L487-L491
Year: 2003

Copyright: ESO 2003

We report the detection with the BeppoSAX Wide Field Cameras of a superburst from 4U 1254-69. The superburst is preceded by a normal type-I X-ray burst, has a decay time that is the longest of all eight superbursts detected so far and a peak luminosity that is the lowest. Like for the other seven superbursts, the origin is a well-known type-I X-ray burster with a persistent luminosity level close to one tenth of the Eddington limit. Based on WFC data of all persistently bright X-ray bursters, the average rate of superbursts is 0.51 +/- 0.25 per year per persistently bright X-ray burster. Some systems may have higher superburst rates. For all superbursters, we present evidence for a pure helium layer which is burnt in an unstable as well as a stable manner.

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