A new globular cluster black hole in NGC 4472

Thomas J. Maccarone, Arunav Kundu, Stephen E. Zepf, Katherine L. Rhode

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


We discuss CXOU 1229410+075744, a new black hole candidate in a globular cluster in the elliptical galaxy NGC 4472. By comparing two Chandra observations of the galaxy, we find a source that varies by at least a factor of 4, and has a peak luminosity of at least 2×1039 erg s-1. As such, the source varies by significantly more than the Eddington luminosity for a single neutron star, and is a strong candidate for being a globular cluster black hole. The source's X-ray spectrum also evolves in amanner consistent with what would be expected from a single accreting stellar mass black hole. We consider the properties of the host cluster of this source and the six other strong black hole X-ray binary candidates, and find that there is suggestive evidence that black hole X-ray binary formation is favoured in bright and metal-rich clusters, just as is the case for bright X-ray sources in general.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1655-1659
Number of pages5
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 2011


  • Binaries: general
  • Globular clusters: general
  • Stars: kinematics and dynamics


Dive into the research topics of 'A new globular cluster black hole in NGC 4472'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this