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Conference Papers Year : 2005

Disc radius variations in binaries

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Abstract

A thermal/viscous instability of the accretion disc arising when hydrogen is partially ionized is the most popular explanation of the outbursts of both dwarf novae (DN) and soft X-ray transients (SXT). During an outburst, the disc expands and may reach the 3:1 resonance radius, triggering the so-called tidal instability. The consequences of such an instability are still debated; it is generally accepted that it results in the observed periodic modulation in SU UMa systems, and to large amplitude outbursts in these systems, the latter being more controversial. We discuss both the theoretical and observational evidences for such radius variations in DNs and SXTs, and the consequences of the application of the tidal instability in SXT.
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Dates and versions

hal-00005346 , version 1 (13-06-2005)

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Jean-Marie Hameury, Jean-Pierre Lasota. Disc radius variations in binaries. Spectra and timing of compact X-ray binaries, 2005, Mumbai, India. ⟨hal-00005346⟩
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