BlackCAT: A catalogue of stellar-mass black holes in X-ray transients

J. M. Corral-Santana, J. Casares, T. Muñoz-Darias, F. E. Bauer, I. G. Martínez-Pais, D. M. Russell

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Aims. During the last ∼50 years, the population of black hole candidates in X-ray binaries has increased considerably, with 59 Galactic objects being detected in transient low-mass X-ray binaries, as well as a few in persistent systems (including ∼5 extragalactic binaries). Methods. We collect near-infrared, optical, and X-ray information spread over hundreds of references to study the population of black holes in X-ray transients as a whole. Results. We present the most updated catalogue of black hole transients. This contains X-ray, optical, and near-infrared observations, together with their astrometric and dynamical properties. The catalogue provides new and useful information in both statistical and observational parameters and provides a thorough and complete overview of the black hole population in the Milky Way. Analysing the distances and spatial distribution of the observed systems, we estimate a total population of ∼1300 Galactic black hole transients. This means that we have only discovered less than ∼5% of the total Galactic distribution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberA61
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016


  • X-rays: binaries
  • catalogs
  • stars: black holes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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