The search for high-energy gamma-ray emission from the close binary system AR Scorpii using Fermi-LAT data

Thumbnail Image
Kaplan, Quinton
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
University of the Free State
AR Scorpii (AR Sco) is an enigmatic close binary system which is observable across most of the electromagnetic spectrum. Multi-wavelength emission consists of both thermal and non-thermal components, where pulsed non-thermal emission has been observed from radio to X-ray. The apparent lack of accretion in the system also suggests that the highly magnetic white dwarf is primarily spin-powered, similar to pulsars, where particles can be accelerated to produce non-thermal emission. The multi-wavelength nature from radio to X-ray of AR Sco has been extensively studied and presented since 2016, showing a clear non-thermal synchrotron component from optical to X-ray. However, the parameters and processes towards the high-energy regime still need to be clearly verified and explored. Hence, a search for non-thermal γ-ray emission from AR Sco using archival Fermi data from the past decade has been performed. By using updated Fermi-LAT software and Pass 8 analysis methods, low-level upper-limit emission has been observed above 100 MeV, with a possible low-level pulsed signal at the spin period (Ps = 117 s) of the white dwarf. Given the results, the possibility of non-thermal emission at higher energies can not be excluded. An updated spectral energy distribution using Fermi-LAT data was also produced to serve as a template for future studies using more sensitive Cherenkov telescope detectors like e.g. the Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA).
High-energy emission, Non-thermal emission, Fermi γ-ray space telescope, 4FGL, Pass 8, Likelihood analysis, Time-series analysis, Cataclysmic variable star, star - AR Sco, Dissertation (M.Sc. (Physics))--University of the Fee State, 2021