The X-ray emission of Intermediate Polars: The BeppoSAX view and the role of current missions

  • De Martino D
  • Matt G
  • Belloni T
 et al. 
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Abstract

Intermediate Polars (IPs) are the most intriguing systems among Cataclysmic Variables (CVs), as the X-ray spectral and temporal behaviour is not similar in all members. The simultaneous study of broad-band X-ray temporal and spectral properties is crucial to characterize the accretion geometry and the physical conditions of the accretion flow onto moderately (B< 10-20 MG) magnetized white dwarfs. Thanks to the wide energy coverage, BeppoSAX observations of bright IPs have allowed to infer the accretion mode, the presence of complex patchy absorption in the pre-shock flow and of a Compton reflection component from the white dwarf surface as well as to measure simultaneously the temperature of the post-shock region and that of the irradiated poles of the white dwarf atmosphere. The observations show that accretion in these systems cannot be reconciled with a single scenario, accounting for their soft and hard X-ray behaviour. Many known systems and IP candidates still lack of X-ray characterization in both soft and hard bands, for which current X-ray missions are providing new and unprecedented results. © 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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Authors

  • D. De Martino

  • G. Matt

  • T. Belloni

  • L. Chiappetti

  • F. Haberl

  • K. Mukai

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