The hierarchical triple system containing the millisecond pulsar PSR B1620-26 in M4 is the first triple star system ever detected in a globular cluster. Such systems should form in globular clusters as a result of dynamical interactions between binaries. We propose that the triple system containing PSR B1620-26 formed through an exchange interaction between a wide primordial binary and a pre-existing binary millisecond pulsar. This scenario would have the advantage of reconciling the ∼109 yr timing age of the pulsar with the much shorter lifetime of the triple system in the core of M4.
- Celestial mechanics, stellar dynamics
- Globular clusters: general
- Globular clusters: individual (M4)
- Pulsars: individual (PSR B1620-26)
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science