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Title: Formation of Low-mass Black Holes and Single Millisecond Pulsars in Globular Clusters
Abstract Close encounters between neutron stars and main-sequence stars occur in globular clusters and may lead to various outcomes. Here we study encounters resulting in the tidal disruption of the star. Using N -body models, we predict the typical stellar masses in these disruptions and the dependence of the event rate on the host cluster properties. We find that tidal disruption events occur most frequently in core-collapsed globular clusters and that roughly 25% of the disrupted stars are merger products (i.e., blue straggler stars). Using hydrodynamic simulations, we model the tidal disruptions themselves (over timescales of days) to determine the mass bound to the neutron star and the properties of the accretion disks formed. In general, we find roughly 80%–90% of the initial stellar mass becomes bound to the neutron star following disruption. Additionally, we find that neutron stars receive impulsive kicks of up to about 20 km s −1 as a result of the asymmetry of unbound ejecta; these kicks place these neutron stars on elongated orbits within their host cluster, with apocenter distances well outside the cluster core. Finally, we model the evolution of the (hypercritical) accretion disks on longer timescales (days to years after disruption) to estimate the accretion rate onto the neutron stars and accompanying spin-up. As long as ≳1% of the bound mass accretes onto the neutron star, millisecond spin periods can be attained. We argue the growing numbers of isolated millisecond pulsars observed in globular clusters may have formed, at least in part, through this mechanism. In the case of significant mass growth, some of these neutron stars may collapse to form low-mass (≲3 M ⊙ ) black holes.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
2108624 2001751 2020265
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ; ;
Date Published:
Journal Name:
The Astrophysical Journal Letters
Page Range / eLocation ID:
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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