AN EMPIRICAL METHOD FOR IMPROVING THE QUALITY OF RXTE HEXTE SPECTRA
Author(s)Grinberg, Victoria; Steiner, James F.; McClintock, Jeffrey E.; Pottschmidt, Katja; Rothschild, Richard E.; Garcia, Javier A.; ... Show more Show less
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We have developed a correction tool to improve the quality of Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) High Energy X-ray Timing Experiment (HEXTE) spectra by employing the same method we used earlier to improve the quality of RXTE Proportional Counter Array (PCA) spectra. We fit all of the hundreds of HEXTE spectra of the Crab individually to a simple power-law model, some 37 million counts in total for Cluster A and 39 million counts for Cluster B, and we create for each cluster a combined spectrum of residuals. We find that the residual spectrum of Cluster A is free of instrumental artifacts while that of Cluster B contains significant features with amplitudes ~1%; the most prominent is in the energy range 30–50 keV, which coincides with the iodine K edge. Starting with the residual spectrum for Cluster B, via an iterative procedure we created the calibration tool hexBcorr for correcting any Cluster B spectrum of interest. We demonstrate the efficacy of the tool by applying it to Cluster B spectra of two bright black holes, which contain several million counts apiece. For these spectra, application of the tool significantly improves the goodness of fit, while affecting only slightly the broadband fit parameters. The tool may be important for the study of spectral features, such as cyclotron lines, a topic that is beyond the scope of this paper.
DepartmentKavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research
The Astrophysical Journal
García, Javier A., Victoria Grinberg, James F. Steiner, Jeffrey E. McClintock, Katja Pottschmidt, and Richard E. Rothschild. “ AN EMPIRICAL METHOD FOR IMPROVING THE QUALITY OF RXTE HEXTE SPECTRA .” The Astrophysical Journal 819, no. 1 (February 29, 2016): 76. © 2016 The American Astronomical Society
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