Paul Roche wrote: “This is an unusual X-ray system, with a slow pulsar (~14 mins spin period) in a wide binary (~250 day) orbit, which exhibits phases where the Be star loses it’s circumstellar disc (characterised by unusally faint periods where the primary fades to V~6.9-7.0). X Per is generally a bright B0e star (V~6.4-6.7), and I’m interested in setting up a long term monitoring project to try and follow the system through it’s next disc-loss phase.”
I think a disc-loss phase may be underway. On a murky night a few days ago, I captured a rather noisy X Per spectrum of which I normally wouldn’t be proud, but with the poor weather I’ve had little opportunity this last couple of months! But it’s good enough to see a significant fade in the intensity of all of the emission lines from the disc since my last spectrum on 28th March. I also attach what Vmag data there is from the AAVSO website in which a significant dip in magnitude is also apparent.