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Astron. Astrophys. 340, L55-L59 (1998)

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Letter to the Editor

BeppoSAX detection of a Cyclotron Feature in the spectrum of Cen X-3

A. Santangelo 1, S. Del Sordo 1, A. Segreto 1, D. Dal Fiume 2, M. Orlandini 2 and S. Piraino 1

1 Istituto di Fisica Cosmica ed Applicazioni all'Informatica, IFCAI/C.N.R., Via La Malfa 153, I-90146 Palermo, Italy
2 Istituto di Tecnologie E Studio delle Radiazioni Extraterrestri, TeSRE/CNR, Via Gobetti 101, I-40129 Bologna, Italy

Received 19 June 1998 / Accepted 2 November 1998


The High Mass X-ray Binary Pulsar Centaurus X-3 was observed by the BeppoSAX satellite during 1997 February 17, while the system was in a high-luminosity ([FORMULA] erg s-1) post-egress state. In this Letter we report the detection of an absorption-like feature, centered at [FORMULA]28 keV, in the broad band phase averaged spectrum. Interpreting the feature as due to cyclotron resonant scattering, we estimate the magnetic field strength close to the surface of the neutron star to be [FORMULA] G.

Key words: magnetic fields – binaries: close – stars: neutron – pulsars: individual (Cen X-3) – X-rays: stars

Send offprint requests to: A. Santangelo (andrea@ifcai.pa.cnr.it)

© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1998

Online publication: November 9, 1998