Animation of an X-ray Binary System
X-ray Binary Stars
What is a Binary Star System?
Binary star systems contain two stars that
orbit around their
common center of mass.
Many of the stars in
our Galaxy are part
of a binary
A special class of binary stars is the X-ray binaries, so-called
because they emit
binaries are made up of a normal star and a collapsed star (a
or black hole).
These pairs of stars produce X-rays if the stars are close enough together that
material is pulled off the normal star by the gravity of the dense, collapsed
star. The X-rays come from the area around the collapsed star where the
material that is falling toward it is heated to very high temperatures (over a
Show Me a Movie about X-ray Binaries!
See an animation of an X-ray binary system, showing material transferring
from a companion star to the X-ray emitting
disk around the compact object. You will need the appropriate software and
drivers to view the movie.