Skip all navigation and jump to content Jump to site navigation Jump to section navigation.
NASA Logo - Goddard Space Flight Center + Visit

+ Advanced Search
View Most Recently Released Imagery
View Gallery of Imagery: A topical collection of SVS Imagery
Search Imagery by the keywords assigned to it
Search Imagery by the instruments that supplied data for a visualization product
Search Imagery by the series of visualizations that have been produced
Search Imagery by the scientist providing the data used in a visualization product
Search Imagery by the animator that created the product
Search Imagery by the identification number assigned to the visualization product
See other search options

  + RSS Feeds
  + Podcasts
blank image
Previous Animation Number   Next Animation Number
Gamma-Rays from High-Mass X-Ray Binaries

In its first year, NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope discovered GeV (billions of electron volts) intensity variations revealing orbital motion in high-mass X-ray binaries (HMXBs). These are systems where a compact companion, such as a neutron star or a black hole, rapidly orbits a hot, young, massive star. The first examples include LSI +61 303, which sports a 26-day orbital period, and LS 5039 (3.9 days). This animation shows such a system. When the compact object lies far from its host star, TeV (trillions of electron volts) gamma-rays (white) are seen by ground-based gamma-ray observatories. But, as the object plunges closer to the star, the TeV emission is quenched and GeV emission turns on. Interactions by accelerated particles from the compact source with gas encircling the star -- or in some systems, the star's light itself - is thought to be responsible for this change.
Share: Share via E-mail E-mail   Share on TwitterTwitter

Animation showing the star's orbit.    Animation showing the star's orbit.
Duration: 16.0 seconds
Available formats:
  960x540     WEBM         3 MB
  1280x720   Frames
  1280x720   QT         18 MB
  640x360     MPEG-4   2 MB
  320x180     MPEG-4   1 MB
  1280x720   MPEG-2   34 MB
  512x288     MPEG-1   5 MB
  320x180     PNG           272 KB
How to play our movies

Short URL to This Page:
Animation Number:10507
Animator:Walt Feimer (HTSI) (Lead)
Writer:Francis Reddy (SPSYS)
Platforms/Sensors/Data Sets:Swift
 Astrophysics Animations
Please give credit for this item to:
Walt Feimer, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
SVS >> Gamma Ray
SVS >> Neutron Star
DLESE >> Space science
SVS >> X-ray
SVS >> Gamma Ray Burst
SVS >> Astrophysics
SVS >> Universe
SVS >> Space
SVS >> Gamma Ray Observatory
SVS >> Fermi
SVS >> Binary Star
SVS >> Binary
NASA Science >> Universe

Back to Top
Many of our multimedia items use the GCMD keywords. These keywords can be found on the Internet with the following citation:
Olsen, L.M., G. Major, K. Shein, J. Scialdone, S. Ritz, T. Stevens, M. Morahan, A. Aleman, R. Vogel, S. Leicester, H. Weir, M. Meaux, S. Grebas, C.Solomon, M. Holland, T. Northcutt, R. A. Restrepo, R. Bilodeau, 2013. NASA/Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) Earth Science Keywords. Version logo - the U.S. Government's official Web portal. + Privacy Policy and Important Notices
+ Reproduction Guidelines
NASA NASA Official:
Content Contact: