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The neutron star X-ray binary (NSXRB) Cyg X-2 was observed by the Swift satellite 51 times over a 4 month period in 2008 with the X-ray Telescope (XRT), UV/optical telescope, and Burst Alert Telescope (BAT) instruments. During this campaign, we observed Cyg X-2 in all three branches of the Z track (horizontal, normal, and flaring branches). We find that the NUV emission is uncorrelated with the soft X-ray flux detected with the XRT and is anticorrelated with the BAT X-ray flux and the hard X-ray color. The observed anticorrelation is inconsistent with simple models of reprocessing as the source of the NUV emission. The anticorrelation may be a consequence of the high inclination angle of Cyg X-2, where NUV emission is preferentially scattered by a corona that expands as the disk is radiatively heated. Alternatively, if the accretion disk thickens as Cyg X-2 goes down the normal branch toward the flaring branch, this may be able to explain the observed anticorrelation. In these models, the NUV emission may not be a good proxy for \dot{m} in the system. We also discuss the implications of using Swift/XRT to perform spectral modeling of the continuum emission of NSXRBs.


Stars, Interstellar Medium and the Galaxy


NOTICE IN COMPLIANCE WITH PUBLISHER POLICY: ©2010, American Astronomical Society. Available at: doi:10.1088/0004-637X/719/2/1993