11 May 2009
Tassos Fragos (Northwestern)
"Models for X-Ray Binaries: Galactic and extragalactic populations"
X-ray binaries are unique astrophysical laboratories as they carry information about many complex physical processes
such as star formation, compact object formation, and evolution of interacting binary systems. I will initially present an
analysis that allows us to reconstruct the full evolutionary history of known Galactic X-ray binaries back to the time of
compact-object formation; the results provide us with the most robust constraints on black-hole kicks due to asymmetries in the
collapse. Motivated by deep Chandra observations of extra-galactic populations of X-ray binaries, I will also present population
studies of low-mass X-ray binaries in elliptical galaxies. These simulations are targeted at understanding the origin of the
shape and normalization of the observed X-ray luminosity functions as well as the transient behavior of X-ray binaries. Finally,
I will briefly talk about an ongoing project towards developing a new advanced computational tool for the study of X-ray binary
populations formed in both galactic fields and dense stellar clusters.