Detection of the gamma-ray binary LS I+61 degrees 303 in a low-flux state at very high energy gamma-rays with the magic telescopes in 2009

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We present very high energy (E > 100 GeV) gamma-ray observations of the gamma-ray binary system LS I +61 degrees 303 obtained with the MAGIC stereo system between 2009 October and 2010 January. We detect a 6.3 sigma gamma-ray signal above 400 GeV in the combined data set. The integral flux above an energy of 300 GeV is F(E > 300 GeV) = (1.4 +/- 0.3(stat) +/- 0.4(syst)) x 10(-12) cm(-2) s(-1), which corresponds to about 1.3% of the Crab Nebula flux in the same energy range. The orbit-averaged flux of LS I +61 degrees 303 in the orbital phase interval 0.6-0.7, where a maximum of the TeV flux is expected, is lower by almost an order of magnitude compared to our previous measurements between 2005 September and 2008 January. This provides evidence for a new low-flux state in LS I +61 degrees 303. We find that the change to the low-flux state cannot be solely explained by an increase of photon-photon absorption around the compact star.
© The American Astronomical Society. We thank the Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias for the excellent working conditions at the Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos in La Palma. The support of the German BMBF and MPG, the Italian INFN, the Swiss National Fund SNF, and the Spanish MICINN is gratefully acknowledged. This work was also supported by the Marie Curie program, by the CPAN CSD2007-00042 and MultiDark CSD2009-00064 projects of the Spanish Consolider-Ingenio 2010 programme, by grant DO02-353 of the Bulgarian NSF, by grant 127740 of the Academy of Finland, by the YIP of the Helmholtz Gemeinschaft, by the DFG Cluster of Excellence “Origin and Structure of the Universe,” and by the Polish MNiSzW Grant N N203 390834
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