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Sample records for millisecond pulsar igr

  1. Orbit Solution for the Millisecond Pulsar IGR J00291+5934

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markwardt, C. B.; Galloway, D. K.; Chakrabarty, D.; Morgan, E. H.; Strohmayer, T. E.

    2004-12-01

    The INTEGRAL Transient IGR J00291+5934 (ATEL #352), now known to be a 1.67 millisecond X-ray pulsar (ATEL #353), was observed by the RXTE PCA on Dec 5 and 6. The source has decayed to approximately 27 mCrab (2-10 keV). The data were barycentered using the Fox & Kulkarni optical counterpart position (ATEL #354). Pulsations with a sinusoidal frequency modulation are clearly detected in each observation.

  2. INTEGRAL detects a new outburst from the millisecond X-ray pulsar IGR J17511-3057

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bozzo, E.; Kuulkers, E.; Bazzano, A.; Beckmann, V.; Bird, T.; Bodaghee, A.; Chenevez, J.; Del Santo, M.; Domingo, A.; Jonker, P.; Kretschmar, P.; Markwardt, C.; Paizis, A.; Pottschmidt, K.; Sanchez-Fernandez, C.; Wijnands, R.; Ferrigno, C.; Tuerler, M.

    2015-03-01

    During the observations performed in the direction of the Galactic Bulge on 2015 March 23 from 02:49 to 07:26 (UTC), the instruments on-board INTEGRAL detected a new outburst from the millisecond X-ray pulsar IGR J17511-3057 (ATel #2196, #2197; Papitto et al., 2010, MNRAS, 407, 2575).

  3. A CHANDRA OBSERVATION OF THE BURSTING MILLISECOND X-RAY PULSAR IGR J17511-3057

    SciTech Connect

    Paizis, A.; Nowak, M. A.; Rodriguez, J.; Chaty, S.; Del Santo, M.; Ubertini, P. E-mail: mnowak@space.mit.edu

    2012-08-10

    IGR J17511-3057 is a low-mass X-ray binary hosting a neutron star and is one of the few accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars with X-ray bursts. We report on a 20 ks Chandra grating observation of IGR J17511-3057, performed on 2009 September 22. We determine the most accurate X-ray position of IGR J17511-3057, {alpha}{sub J2000} = 17{sup h}51{sup m}08.{sup s}66, {delta}{sub J2000} = -30 Degree-Sign 57'41.''0 (90% uncertainty of 0.''6). During the observation, a {approx}54 s long type-I X-ray burst is detected. The persistent (non-burst) emission has an absorbed 0.5-8 keV luminosity of 1.7 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 36} erg s{sup -1} (at 6.9 kpc) and can be well described by a thermal Comptonization model of soft, {approx}0.6 keV, seed photons upscattered by a hot corona. The type-I X-ray burst spectrum, with average luminosity over the 54 s duration L{sub 0.5-8{sub keV}} = 1.6 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 37} erg s{sup -1}, can be well described by a blackbody with kT{sub bb} {approx} 1.6 keV and R{sub bb} {approx} 5 km. While an evolution in temperature of the blackbody can be appreciated throughout the burst (average peak kT{sub bb} = 2.5{sup +0.8}{sub -0.4} keV to tail kT{sub bb} = 1.3{sup +0.2}{sub -0.1} keV), the relative emitting surface shows no evolution. The overall persistent and type-I burst properties observed during the Chandra observation are consistent with what was previously reported during the 2009 outburst of IGR J17511-3057.

  4. Application of the relativistic precession model to the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar IGR J17511-3057

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stefanov, I. Zh.

    2016-03-01

    The observation of a pair of simultaneous twin kHz QPOs in the power density spectrum of a neutron star or a black hole allows its mass-angular-momentum relation to be constrained. Situations in which the observed simultaneous pairs are more than one allow the different models of the kHz QPOs to be falsified. Discrepancy between the estimates coming from the different pairs would call the used model into question. In the current paper, the relativistic precession model is applied to the twin kHz QPOs that appear in the light curves of three groups of observations of the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar IGR J17511-3057. It was found that the predictions of one of the groups are practically in conflict with the other two. Another interesting result is that the region in which the kHz QPOs have been born is rather broad and extends quite far from the ISCO.

  5. Millisecond pulsars: Timekeepers of the cosmos

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kaspi, Victoria M.

    1995-01-01

    A brief discussion on the characteristics of pulsars is given followed by a review of millisecond pulsar discoveries including the very first, PRS B1937+21, discovered in 1982. Methods of timing millisecond pulsars and the accuracy of millisecond pulsars as clocks are discussed. Possible reasons for the pulse residuals, or differences between the observed and predicted pulse arrival times for millisecond pulsars, are given.

  6. NANOGrav Millisecond Pulsar Observing Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nice, David J.; Nanograv

    2015-01-01

    Gravitational waves from sources such as supermassive black hole binary systems are expected to perturb times-of-flight of signals traveling from pulsars to the Earth. The NANOGrav consortium aims to measure these perturbations in high precision millisecond pulsar timing measurements and thus to directly detect gravitational waves and characterize gravitational wave sources. By observing pulsars over time spans of many years, we are most sensitive to gravitational waves at nanohertz frequencies.In this presentation we describe the NANOGrav observing program. We presently observe an array of 45 millisecond pulsars, evenly divided between the Arecibo Observatory (for pulsars with declinations between -1 and 39 degrees) and the Green Bank Telescope (for other pulsars, with two pulsars overlapping with Arecibo). Observation of a large number of pulsars allows for searches of correlated perturbations between multiple pulsar signals, which will be crucial for achieving high-significance detection of gravitational waves in the face of uncorrelated noise (from gravitational waves and rotation noise) in the individual pulsars. As new high-quality pulsars are discovered, they are added to the program.Observations of each pulsar are made with cadence of 20 to 30 days, with observations of each pulsar in two separate radio bands. Arrival times for nearly all pulsars are measured with precision better than 1 microsecond (averaged over a typical observation of 20 minutes), and in the best cases the precision is better than 100 nanoseconds.We describe the NANOGrav nine-year data release, which contains time-of-arrival measurements and high quality timing solutions from 37 pulsars observed over spans ranging between 0.7 to 9.3 years.

  7. String theories and millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanchez, N.; Signore, M.

    1988-11-01

    We discuss the two ways of connecting string theories (cosmic, fundamental and the connection between them) to the observational reality: (i) radioastronomy observations (millisecond pulsar timing), and (ii) elementary particle phenomenology (compactification schemes). We study the limits imposed on the string parameter Gμ by recent millisecond pulsar timings. Cosmic strings derived from GUTs agree with (i). For cosmic strings derived from fundamental strings themselves there is contradiction between (i) and (ii). One of these scenarios connecting string theory to reality must be revised (or the transition from fundamental into cosmic strings rejected). Meanwhile, millisecond pulsar can select one scenario, or reject both of them. UA 336 Laboratoire Associé au CNRS, Observatoire de Meudon et Ecole Normale Supérieure, 24 rue Lhomond, F-75231 Paris Cedex 05, France.

  8. An ultraluminous nascent millisecond pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kluźniak, Włodek; Lasota, Jean-Pierre

    2015-03-01

    If the ultraluminous source (ULX) M82 X-2 sustains its measured spin-up value of dot{ν }= 10^{-10} s^{-2}, it will become a millisecond pulsar in less than 105 yr. The observed (isotropic) luminosity of 1040 erg s-1 also supports the notion that the neutron star will spin up to a millisecond period upon accreting about 0.1 M⊙ - the reported hard X-ray luminosity of this ULX, together with the spin-up value, implies torques consistent with the accretion disc extending down to the vicinity of the stellar surface, as expected for low values of the stellar dipole magnetic field (B ≲ 109 G). This suggests a new channel of millisecond pulsar formation - in high-mass X-ray binaries - and may have implications for studies of gravitational waves, and possibly for the formation of low-mass black holes through accretion-induced collapse.

  9. Millisecond radio pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Verbunt, Frank; Lewin, Walter H. G.; Van Paradijs, Jan

    1989-01-01

    It is shown that the number of millisecond radio pulsars, in globular clusters, should be larger than 100, applying the standard scenario that all the pulsars descend from low-mass X-ray binaries. Moreover, most of the pulsars are located in a small number of clusters. The prediction that Teran 5 and Liller 1 contain at least about a dozen millisecond radio pulsars each is made. The observations of millisecond radio pulsars in globular clusters to date, in particular the discovery of two millisecond radio pulsars in 47 Tuc, are in agreement with the standard scenario, in which the neutron star is spun up during the mass transfer phase.

  10. Birth of millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grindlay, J. E.; Bailyn, C. D.

    1988-01-01

    It is argued here that accretion-induced collapse of white dwarfs in binaries can form millisecond pulsars directly without requiring a precursor low-mass X-ray binary stage. Ablation of the precollapse binary companion by the millisecond pulsar's radiation field, a process invoked to explain some of the characteristics of the recently discovered eclipsing millisecond pulsar, can then yield isolated neutron stars witout requiring an additional stellar encounter.

  11. Gamma rays from hidden millisecond pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tavani, Marco

    1992-01-01

    The properties were studied of a new class of gamma ray sources consisting of millisecond pulsars totally or partially surrounded by evaporating material from irradiated companion stars. Hidden millisecond pulsars offer a unique possibility to study gamma ray, optical and radio emission from vaporizing binaries. The relevance of this class of binaries for GRO observations and interpretation of COS-B data is emphasized.

  12. Wideband Timing of Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pennucci, Timothy; Demorest, Paul; Ransom, Scott M.; North American Nanohertz ObservatoryGravitational Waves (Nanograv)

    2015-01-01

    The use of backend instrumentation capable of real-time coherent dedispersion of relatively large fractional bandwidths has become commonplace in pulsar astronomy. However, along with the desired increase in sensitivity to pulsars' broadband signals, a larger instantaneous bandwidth brings a number of potentially aggravating effects that can lead to degraded timing precision. In the case of high-precision timing experiments, such as the one being carried out by the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves (NANOGrav), subtle effects such as unmodeled intrinsic profile evolution with frequency, interstellar scattering, and dispersion measure variation are potentially capable of reducing the experiment's sensitivity to a gravitational wave signal. In order to account for some of these complications associated with wideband observations, we augmented the traditional algorithm by which the fundamental timing quantities are measured. Our new measurement algorithm accommodates an arbitrary two-dimensional model ``portrait'' of a pulsar's total intensity as a function of observing frequency and rotational phase, and simultaneously determines the time-of-arrival (TOA), the dispersion measure (DM), and per-frequency-channel amplitudes that account for interstellar scintillation. Our publicly available python code incorporates a Gaussian-component modeling routine that allows for independent component evolution with frequency, a ``fiducial component'', and the inclusion of scattering. Here, we will present results from the application of our wideband measurement scheme to the suite of NANOGrav millisecond pulsars, which aimed to determine the level at which the experiment is being harmed by unmodeled profile evolution. We have found thus far, and expect to continue to find, that our new measurements are at least as good as those from traditional techniques. At a minimum, by largely reducing the volume of TOAs we will decrease the computational demand

  13. The Disturbance of a Millisecond Pulsar Magnetosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shannon, R. M.; Lentati, L. T.; Kerr, M.; Bailes, M.; Bhat, N. D. R.; Coles, W. A.; Dai, S.; Dempsey, J.; Hobbs, G.; Keith, M. J.; Lasky, P. D.; Levin, Y.; Manchester, R. N.; Osłowski, S.; Ravi, V.; Reardon, D. J.; Rosado, P. A.; Spiewak, R.; van Straten, W.; Toomey, L.; Wang, J.-B.; Wen, L.; You, X.-P.; Zhu, X.-J.

    2016-09-01

    Pulsar timing has enabled some of the strongest tests of fundamental physics. Central to the technique is the assumption that the detected radio pulses can be used to accurately measure the rotation of the pulsar. Here, we report on a broadband variation in the pulse profile of the millisecond pulsar J1643‑1224. A new component of emission suddenly appears in the pulse profile, decays over four months, and results in a permanently modified pulse shape. Profile variations such as these may be the origin of timing noise observed in other millisecond pulsars. The sensitivity of pulsar-timing observations to gravitational radiation can be increased by accounting for this variability.

  14. Millisecond pulsars - Nature's most stable clocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, Joseph H., Jr.

    1991-07-01

    The author describes the role pulsars might play in time and frequency technology. Millisecond pulsars are rapidly rotating neutron stars: spherical flywheels some 20 km in diameter, 1.4 times as massive as the Sun, and spinning as fast as several thousand radians per second. Radio noise generated in a pulsar's magnetosphere by a highly beamed process is detectable over interstellar distances, as a periodic sequence of pulses similar to the ticks of an excellent clock. High-precision comparisons between pulsar time and terrestrial atomic time show that over intervals of several years, some millisecond pulsars have fractional stabilities comparable to those of the best atomic clocks. The author briefly reviews the physics of pulsars, discusses the techniques of pulsar timing measurements, and summarizes the results of careful studies of pulsar stabilities.

  15. Superfluidity in Millisecond Pulsars (Review)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pines, D.; Alpar, A.

    The authors review the evidence for superfluidity in the Vela pulsar, the Crab pulsar and PSR 0525+21, and examine the prospects for observing similar consequences of superfluidity in the already-discovered millisec pulsars. They consider, inter alia, the likelihood of observing glitches, the expected post-glitch behavior, and pulsar heating by energy dissipation due to the creep of neutron vortex lines in pinned superfluid regions of the crust.

  16. The origin of planets orbiting millisecond pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tavani, Marco; Brookshaw, Leigh

    1992-01-01

    A model for the formation of planets around millisecond pulsar which no longer have stellar companions is suggested. Detailed hydrodynamical models are presented which suggest that planet formation can occur either in a low-mass X-ray binary progenitor to a progenitor of a star-vaporizing millisecond pulsar when the neutron star is accreting material driven off its companion by X-ray irradiation or after a pulsar has formed and is vaporizing its companion. In both cases a circumbinary disk is created in which planets can form on a timescale of 10 exp 5 to 10 exp 6 yrs and the planets can survive a second phase in which the companion star moves toward the pulsar and is completely vaporized.

  17. A Search for Radio Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sayer, Ronald Winston

    1996-01-01

    We have built a data acquisition backend for radio pulsar search observations carried out at the NRAO 140 -foot telescope in Green Bank, West Virginia. Our system sampled 512 spectral channels over 40 MHz every 256 mus, reduced samples to one-bit precision, and wrote the resulting data stream onto magnetic tape for later, off-line processing. We have completed three surveys with this backend. In the first survey, we searched most of the Northern Hemisphere for millisecond radio pulsars. Previous surveys directed towards most of the region covered had not been as sensitive to pulsars with millisecond periods. We obtained high quality data for 15,876 deg^2 of sky. Eight new pulsars were discovered and 76 previously known pulsars were detected. Two of the eight new pulsars (PSR J1022+1001 and PSR J1518+4904) are millisecond pulsars in binary systems. PSR J1518+4904 is a 41 ms radio pulsar in an eccentric (e = 0.25) 8.6 day orbit with another stellar object, probably another neutron star. It is only the fifth double neutron star system known. The system's relativistic advance of periastron has been measured to be ˙omega = 0.0112 +/- 0.0002 ^circ yr^{-1}, implying that the total mass of the pair of stars is 2.65 +/-0.07Modot. We have searched for radio pulsar companions to 40 nearby OB runaway stars. No pulsar companions to OB runaways were discovered. One previously unknown pulsar, PSR J2044+4614, was discovered while observing towards target O star BD+45,3260. However, follow-up timing observations reveal that the pulsar is not associated with the target O star. Assuming standard models for the pulsar beaming fraction and luminosity function, we conclude that most OB runaways do not have pulsar companions. We have completed a survey for pulsed radio signals towards 27 gamma-ray sources detected by the EGRET instrument of the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory. No new pulsars were discovered.

  18. Hiccup accretion in the swinging pulsar IGR J18245-2452

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferrigno, C.; Bozzo, E.; Papitto, A.; Rea, N.; Pavan, L.; Campana, S.; Wieringa, M.; Filipović, M.; Falanga, M.; Stella, L.

    2014-07-01

    The source IGR J18245-2452 is the fifteenth discovered accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar and the first neutron star to show direct evidence of a transition between accretion- and rotation-powered emission states. These swings provided the strongest confirmation to date of the pulsar recycling scenario. During the two XMM-Newton observations that were carried out while the source was in outburst in April 2013, IGR J18245-2452 displayed a unique and peculiar X-ray variability. In this work, we report on a detailed analysis of the XMM-Newton data and focus on the timing and spectral variability of the source. In the 0.4-11 keV energy band, IGR J18245-2452 continuously switched between lower and higher intensity states, with typical variations in flux by factor of ~100 on time scales as short as a few seconds. These variations in the source intensity were sometimes accompanied by dramatic spectral hardening, during which the X-ray power-law photon index varied from Γ = 1.7 to Γ = 0.9. The pulse profiles extracted at different count-rates, hardnesses, and energies also showed a complex variability. These phenomena were never observed in accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars, at least not on such a short time-scale. Fast variability was also found in the 5.5 and 9 GHz ATCA radio observations that were carried out for about 6 h during the outburst. We interpret the variability observed from IGR J18245-2452 in terms of a hiccup accretion phase, during which the accretion of material from the inner boundary of the Keplerian disk is reduced by the onset of centrifugal inhibition of accretion, possibly causing the launch of outflows. Changes across accretion and propeller regimes have been long predicted and reproduced by magnetohydrodynamic simulations of accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars, but have never observed to produce as extreme a variability as that shown by IGR J18245-2452.

  19. A millisecond pulsar timing array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hobbs, George; Manchester, Dick; Verbiest, Joris P. W.; Sarkissian, John; Bailes, Matthew; Bhat, Ramesh; Jenet, Rick; Keith, Michael; Burke-Spolaor, Sarah; van Straten, Willem; Yardley, Daniel Roger Billing; Ravi, Vikram; Oslowski, Stefan; Hotan, Aidan; Champion, David; Khoo, Jonathan; Shannon, Ryan; Chaudhary, Ankur

    2011-10-01

    The Parkes Pulsar Timing Array (PPTA) project has three primary goals: (a) detection of gravitational waves from astronomical sources, (b) establishment of a pulsar timescale, and (c) improvement of our understanding of Solar-system dynamics. There are many secondary goals, some astrophysical and some instrumental/technique oriented. Achievement of these ambitious primary goals requires frequent observations of at least 20 MSPs at two or preferably three widely spaced frequencies over several years. We wish to continue observing the PPTA sample at intervals of 2-3 weeks using both the 10/50cm and Multibeam receivers. The digital filterbanks (PDFB3, PDFB4) and the baseband systems (CPSR2; APSR) are used for data recording. With the new instruments and development of an efficient pipeline processing system, we have achieved the world's best pulsar timing precision. We are collaborating with the European and North American pulsar timing array groups (EPTA and NANOGrav, respectively) to obtain more frequent observations and a larger pulsar sample. Because of the high sensitivity and wide bandwidths required, RFI mitigation is an important part of the project. We request continuing status for this project.

  20. A millisecond pulsar timing array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hobbs, George; Manchester, Dick; Sarkissian, John; Bailes, Matthew; Bhat, Ramesh; Keith, Michael; Burke-Spolaor, Sarah; Coles, William; van Straten, Willem; Yardley, Daniel Roger Billing; Ravi, Vikram; Oslowski, Stefan; Khoo, Jonathan; Shannon, Ryan; Wang, Jingbo; Levin, Yuri

    2013-04-01

    The Parkes Pulsar Timing Array (PPTA) project has three primary goals: (a) detection of gravitational waves from astronomical sources, (b) establishment of a pulsar timescale, and (c) improvement of our understanding of Solar-system dynamics. There are many secondary goals, some astrophysical and some instrumental/technique oriented. Achievement of these ambitious primary goals requires frequent observations of at least 20 MSPs at two or preferably three widely spaced frequencies over several years. We wish to continue observing the PPTA sample at intervals of 2-3 weeks using both the 10/50cm and Multibeam receivers. The digital filterbanks (PDFB3, PDFB4) and the baseband systems (CPSR2; APSR) are used for data recording. With the new instruments and development of an efficient pipeline processing system, we have achieved the world's best pulsar timing precision. We are collaborating with the European and North American pulsar timing array groups (EPTA and NANOGrav, respectively) to obtain more frequent observations and a larger pulsar sample. Because of the high sensitivity and wide bandwidths required, RFI mitigation is an important part of the project. We request continuing status for this project.

  1. A millisecond pulsar timing array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hobbs, George; Manchester, Dick; Verbiest, Joris P. W.; Sarkissian, John; Bailes, Matthew; Bhat, Ramesh; Jenet, Rick; Keith, Michael; Burke-Spolaor, Sarah; van Straten, Willem; Yardley, Daniel Roger Billing; Ravi, Vikram; Oslowski, Stefan; Hotan, Aidan; Champion, David; Khoo, Jonathan; Shannon, Ryan; Chaudhary, Ankur

    2012-04-01

    The Parkes Pulsar Timing Array (PPTA) project has three primary goals: (a) detection of gravitational waves from astronomical sources, (b) establishment of a pulsar timescale, and (c) improvement of our understanding of Solar-system dynamics. There are many secondary goals, some astrophysical and some instrumental/technique oriented. Achievement of these ambitious primary goals requires frequent observations of at least 20 MSPs at two or preferably three widely spaced frequencies over several years. We wish to continue observing the PPTA sample at intervals of 2-3 weeks using both the 10/50cm and Multibeam receivers. The digital filterbanks (PDFB3, PDFB4) and the baseband systems (CPSR2; APSR) are used for data recording. With the new instruments and development of an efficient pipeline processing system, we have achieved the world's best pulsar timing precision. We are collaborating with the European and North American pulsar timing array groups (EPTA and NANOGrav, respectively) to obtain more frequent observations and a larger pulsar sample. Because of the high sensitivity and wide bandwidths required, RFI mitigation is an important part of the project. We request continuing status for this project.

  2. A millisecond pulsar timing array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hobbs, George; Manchester, Dick; Verbiest, Joris P. W.; Sarkissian, John; Bailes, Matthew; Bhat, Ramesh; Jenet, Rick; Keith, Michael; Burke-Spolaor, Sarah; van Straten, Willem; Yardley, Daniel Roger Billing; Oslowski, Stefan; Hotan, Aidan; Champion, David; Khoo, Jonathan; Shannon, Ryan; Chaudhary, Ankur

    2011-04-01

    The Parkes Pulsar Timing Array (PPTA) project has three primary goals: (a) detection of gravitational waves from astronomical sources, (b) establishment of a pulsar timescale, and (c) improvement of our understanding of Solar-system dynamics. There are many secondary goals, some astrophysical and some instrumental/technique oriented. Achievement of these ambitious primary goals requires frequent observations of at least 20 MSPs at two or preferably three widely spaced frequencies over several years. We wish to continue observing the PPTA sample at intervals of 2-3 weeks using both the 10/50cm and Multibeam receivers. The digital filterbanks (PDFB3, PDFB4) and the baseband systems (CPSR2; APSR) are used for data recording. With the new instruments and development of an efficient pipeline processing system, we have achieved the world's best pulsar timing precision. We are collaborating with the European and North American pulsar timing array groups (EPTA and NANOGrav, respectively) to obtain more frequent observations and a larger pulsar sample. Because of the high sensitivity and wide bandwidths required, RFI mitigation is an important part of the project. We request continuing status for this project.

  3. A millisecond pulsar timing array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hobbs, George; Manchester, Dick; Sarkissian, John; Bailes, Matthew; Bhat, Ramesh; Keith, Michael; Burke-Spolaor, Sarah; Coles, William; van Straten, Willem; Ravi, Vikram; Oslowski, Stefan; Khoo, Jonathan; Shannon, Ryan; Wang, Jingbo; Levin, Yuri

    2013-10-01

    The Parkes Pulsar Timing Array (PPTA) project has three primary goals: (a) detection of gravitational waves from astronomical sources, (b) establishment of a pulsar timescale, and (c) improvement of our understanding of Solar-system dynamics. There are many secondary goals, some astrophysical and some instrumental/technique oriented. Achievement of these ambitious primary goals requires frequent observations of at least 20 MSPs at two or preferably three widely spaced frequencies over several years. We wish to continue observing the PPTA sample at intervals of 2-3 weeks using both the 10/50cm and Multibeam receivers. The digital filterbanks (PDFB3, PDFB4) and the baseband systems (CPSR2; APSR) are used for data recording. With the new instruments and development of an efficient pipeline processing system, we have achieved the world's best pulsar timing precision. We are collaborating with the European and North American pulsar timing array groups (EPTA and NANOGrav, respectively) to obtain more frequent observations and a larger pulsar sample. Because of the high sensitivity and wide bandwidths required, RFI mitigation is an important part of the project. We request continuing status for this project.

  4. A millisecond pulsar timing array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hobbs, George; Manchester, Dick; Verbiest, Joris P. W.; Sarkissian, John; Bailes, Matthew; Bhat, Ramesh; Jenet, Rick; Keith, Michael; Burke-Spolaor, Sarah; van Straten, Willem; Ravi, Vikram; Oslowski, Stefan; Hotan, Aidan; Champion, David; Khoo, Jonathan; Shannon, Ryan; Chaudhary, Ankur

    2012-10-01

    The Parkes Pulsar Timing Array (PPTA) project has three primary goals: (a) detection of gravitational waves from astronomical sources, (b) establishment of a pulsar timescale, and (c) improvement of our understanding of Solar-system dynamics. There are many secondary goals, some astrophysical and some instrumental/technique oriented. Achievement of these ambitious primary goals requires frequent observations of at least 20 MSPs at two or preferably three widely spaced frequencies over several years. We wish to continue observing the PPTA sample at intervals of 2-3 weeks using both the 10/50cm and Multibeam receivers. The digital filterbanks (PDFB3, PDFB4) and the baseband systems (CASPSR; APSR) are used for data recording. With the new instruments and development of an efficient pipeline processing system, we have achieved the world's best pulsar timing precision. We are collaborating with the European and North American pulsar timing array groups (EPTA and NANOGrav, respectively) to obtain more frequent observations and a larger pulsar sample. Because of the high sensitivity and wide bandwidths required, RFI mitigation is an important part of the project. We request continuing status for this project.

  5. Timing of millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amico, Nichi; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Johnston, Simon; Kramer, Michael; Sarkissian, John; Lyne, Andrew; Burgay, Marta; Corongiu, Alessandro; Camilo, Fernando; Bailes, Matthew; van Straten, Willem

    2014-10-01

    Timing of the dozen pulsars discovered by us in P303 is ensuring high quality results: (a) the peculiarities (in position or projected acceleration) of all the 5 millisecond pulsars in NGC6752 suggested the presence of non thermal dynamics in the core, perhaps due to black-holes of intermediate mass; (b) the eclipsing pulsar in NGC6397 is a stereotype for studying the late evolution of exotic binaries. We propose to continue our timing project focusing mostly on NGC6397 at 10cm, for studying the orbital secular evolution, the eclipse region, and the role played by the high energy photons released from the pulsar in the ejection of matter from the binary system.

  6. Timing of millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amico, Nichi; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Johnston, Simon; Kramer, Michael; Sarkissian, John; Lyne, Andrew; Burgay, Marta; Corongiu, Alessandro; Camilo, Fernando; Bailes, Matthew; van Straten, Willem

    2013-10-01

    Timing of the dozen pulsars discovered by us in P303 is ensuring high quality results: (a) the peculiarities (in position or projected acceleration) of all the 5 millisecond pulsars in NGC6752 suggested the presence of non thermal dynamics in the core, perhaps due to black-holes of intermediate mass; (b) the eclipsing pulsar in NGC6397 is a stereotype for studying the late evolution of exotic binaries. We propose to continue our timing project focusing mostly on NGC6752 at 20cm (in order to measure additional parameters useful to constrain the existence of a black-hole) and NGC6397 at 10cm (for studying the orbital secular evolution, the eclipse region, and the role played by the high energy photons released from the pulsar in the ejection of matter from the binary system).

  7. Timing of millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amico, Nichi; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Johnston, Simon; Kramer, Michael; Sarkissian, John; Lyne, Andrew; Burgay, Marta; Corongiu, Alessandro; Camilo, Fernando; Bailes, Matthew; van Straten, Willem

    2014-04-01

    Timing of the dozen pulsars discovered by us in P303 is ensuring high quality results: (a) the peculiarities (in position or projected acceleration) of all the 5 millisecond pulsars in NGC6752 suggested the presence of non thermal dynamics in the core, perhaps due to black-holes of intermediate mass; (b) the eclipsing pulsar in NGC6397 is a stereotype for studying the late evolution of exotic binaries. We propose to continue our timing project focusing mostly on NGC6752 at 20cm (in order to measure additional parameters useful to constrain the existence of a black-hole) and NGC6397 at 10cm (for studying the orbital secular evolution, the eclipse region, and the role played by the high energy photons released from the pulsar in the ejection of matter from the binary system).

  8. Is the sub-millisecond pulsar strange?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frieman, Joshua A.; Olinto, Angela V.

    1989-01-01

    The possibility that the submillisecond pulsar from supernova 1987A is composed of strange matter is theoretically discussed. It is shown that for a range of hadron parameters, the maximum rotation rate of secularly stable strange stars may exceed that of the half-millisecond pulsar and the nonrotating maximum mass is greater than 1.52 solar mass. The low-mass companion(s) to SN1987A, inferred from the periodic modulations of the optical signal, can be accounted for by stable strange-matter lump(s) ejected from the young strange star.

  9. Gravitational wave emission from oscillating millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alford, Mark G.; Schwenzer, Kai

    2015-02-01

    Neutron stars undergoing r-mode oscillation emit gravitational radiation that might be detected on the Earth. For known millisecond pulsars the observed spin-down rate imposes an upper limit on the possible gravitational wave signal of these sources. Taking into account the physics of r-mode evolution, we show that only sources spinning at frequencies above a few hundred Hertz can be unstable to r-modes, and we derive a more stringent universal r-mode spin-down limit on their gravitational wave signal. We find that this refined bound limits the gravitational wave strain from millisecond pulsars to values below the detection sensitivity of next generation detectors. Young sources are therefore a more promising option for the detection of gravitational waves emitted by r-modes and to probe the interior composition of compact stars in the near future.

  10. High-Energy Emission From Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.; Usov, Vladimir V.; Muslimov, Alex G.

    2004-01-01

    The X-ray and gamma-ray spectrum of rotation-powered millisecond pulsars is investigated in a model for acceleration and pair cascades on open field lines above the polar caps. Although these pulsars have low surface magnetic fields, their short periods allow them to have large magnetospheric potential drops, but the majority do not produce sufficient pairs to completely screen the accelerating electric field. In these sources, the primary and secondary electrons continue to accelerate to high altitude and their Lorentz factors are limited by curvature and synchrotron radiation reaction. The accelerating particles maintain high Lorentz factors and undergo cyclotron resonant absorption of radio emission, that produces and maintains a large pitch angle, resulting in a strong synchrotron component. The resulting spectra consist of several distinct components: curvature radiation from primary electrons dominating from 1 - 100 GeV, synchrotron radiation from primary and secondary electrons dominating up to about 100 MeV, and much weaker inverse-Compton radiation from primary electrons a t 0.1 - 1 TeV. We find that the relative size of these components depends on pulsar period, period derivative, and neutron star mass and radius with the level of the synchrotron component also depending sensitively on the radio emission properties. This model is successful in describing the observed X-ray and gamma-ray spectrum of PSR J0218+4232 as synchrotron radiation, peaking around 100 MeV and extending up to a turnover around several GeV. The predicted curvature radiation components from a number of millisecond pulsars, as well as the collective emission from the millisecond pulsars in globular clusters, should be detectable with AGILE and GLAST. We also discuss a hidden population of X-ray-quiet and radio-quiet millisecond pulsars which have evolved below the pair death line, some of which may be detectable by telescopes sensitive above 1 GeV. Subject headings: pulsars: general

  11. Timing of millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amico, Nichi; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Johnston, Simon; Kramer, Michael; Sarkissian, John; Lyne, Andrew; Burgay, Marta; Corongiu, Alessandro; Camilo, Fernando; Bailes, Matthew; van Straten, Willem

    2011-10-01

    Timing of the dozen pulsars discovered by us in P303 is ensuring high quality results: (a) the peculiarities (in position or projected acceleration) of all the 5 millisecond pulsars in NGC6752 suggested the presence of non thermal dynamics in the core, perhaps due to black-holes of intermediate mass; (b) the eclipsing pulsar in NGC6397 is a stereotype for studying the late evolution of exotic binaries. We propose to continue our timing project focusing mostly on NGC6752 at 20cm (in order to measure additional parameters useful to constrain the existence of a black-hole) and NGC6397 at 10cm (for studying the orbital secular evolution, the eclipse region, and the mechanisms leading to the ejection of matter from the binary system).

  12. Timing of millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amico, Nichi; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Johnston, Simon; Kramer, Michael; Sarkissian, John; Lyne, Andrew; Burgay, Marta; Corongiu, Alessandro; Camilo, Fernando; Bailes, Matthew; van Straten, Willem

    2011-04-01

    Timing of the dozen pulsars discovered by us in P303 is ensuring high quality results: (a) the peculiarities (in position or projected acceleration) of all the 5 millisecond pulsars in NGC6752 suggested the presence of non thermal dynamics in the core, perhaps due to black-holes of intermediate mass; (b) the eclipsing pulsar in NGC6397 is a stereotype for studying the late evolution of exotic binaries. We propose to continue our timing project focusing mostly on NGC6752 at 20cm (in order to measure additional parameters useful to constrain the existence of a black-hole) and NGC6397 at 10cm (for studying the orbital secular evolution, the eclipse region, and the mechanisms leading to the ejection of matter from the binary system).

  13. Timing of millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amico, Nichi; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Johnston, Simon; Kramer, Michael; Sarkissian, John; Lyne, Andrew; Burgay, Marta; Corongiu, Alessandro; Camilo, Fernando; Bailes, Matthew; van Straten, Willem

    2013-04-01

    Timing of the dozen pulsars discovered by us in P303 is ensuring high quality results: (a) the peculiarities (in position or projected acceleration) of all the 5 millisecond pulsars in NGC6752 suggested the presence of non thermal dynamics in the core, perhaps due to black-holes of intermediate mass; (b) the eclipsing pulsar in NGC6397 is a stereotype for studying the late evolution of exotic binaries. We propose to continue our timing project focusing mostly on NGC6752 at 20cm (in order to measure additional parameters useful to constrain the existence of a black-hole) and NGC6397 at 10cm (for studying the orbital secular evolution, the eclipse region, and the mechanisms leading to the ejection of matter from the binary system).

  14. Timing of millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amico, Nichi; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Johnston, Simon; Kramer, Michael; Sarkissian, John; Lyne, Andrew; Burgay, Marta; Corongiu, Alessandro; Camilo, Fernando; Bailes, Matthew; van Straten, Willem

    2010-10-01

    Timing of the dozen pulsars discovered by us in P303 is ensuring high quality results: (a) the peculiarities (in position or projected acceleration) of all the 5 millisecond pulsars in NGC6752 suggested the presence of non thermal dynamics in the core, perhaps due to black-holes of intermediate mass; (b) the eclipsing pulsar in NGC6397 is a stereotype for studying the late evolution of exotic binaries. We propose to continue our timing project focusing mostly on NGC6752 at 20cm (in order to measure additional parameters useful to constrain the existence of a black-hole) and NGC6397 at 10cm (for studying the eclipse region and the orbital secular evolution).

  15. Timing of millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amico, Nichi; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Johnston, Simon; Kramer, Michael; Sarkissian, John; Lyne, Andrew; Burgay, Marta; Corongiu, Alessandro; Camilo, Fernando; Bailes, Matthew; van Straten, Willem

    2012-10-01

    Timing of the dozen pulsars discovered by us in P303 is ensuring high quality results: (a) the peculiarities (in position or projected acceleration) of all the 5 millisecond pulsars in NGC6752 suggested the presence of non thermal dynamics in the core, perhaps due to black-holes of intermediate mass; (b) the eclipsing pulsar in NGC6397 is a stereotype for studying the late evolution of exotic binaries. We propose to continue our timing project focusing mostly on NGC6752 at 20cm (in order to measure additional parameters useful to constrain the existence of a black-hole) and NGC6397 at 10cm (for studying the orbital secular evolution, the eclipse region, and the mechanisms leading to the ejection of matter from the binary system).

  16. Timing of millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amico, Nichi; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Johnston, Simon; Kramer, Michael; Sarkissian, John; Lyne, Andrew; Burgay, Marta; Corongiu, Alessandro; Camilo, Fernando; Bailes, Matthew; van Straten, Willem

    2012-04-01

    Timing of the dozen pulsars discovered by us in P303 is ensuring high quality results: (a) the peculiarities (in position or projected acceleration) of all the 5 millisecond pulsars in NGC6752 suggested the presence of non thermal dynamics in the core, perhaps due to black-holes of intermediate mass; (b) the eclipsing pulsar in NGC6397 is a stereotype for studying the late evolution of exotic binaries. We propose to continue our timing project focusing mostly on NGC6752 at 20cm (in order to measure additional parameters useful to constrain the existence of a black-hole) and NGC6397 at 10cm (for studying the orbital secular evolution, the eclipse region, and the mechanisms leading to the ejection of matter from the binary system).

  17. Phase Coherent Observations and Millisecond Pulsar Searches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shrauner, Jay Arthur

    1997-07-01

    new pulsars and detected 14 that were previously known. One of these new pulsars, PSR J0621+1002, is a millisecond pulsar with a relatively large mass companion. This system is of special interest because the relativistic advance of periastron should be measurable within a few years.

  18. Observations of the Eclipsing Millisecond Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bookbinder, Jay

    1990-12-01

    FRUCHTER et al. (1988a) HAVE RECENTLY DISCOVERED a 1.6 MSEC PULSAR (PSR 1957+20) IN A 9.2 HOUR ECLIPSING BINARY SYSTEM. THE UNUSUAL BEHAVIOR OF THE DISPERSION MEASURE AS A FUNCTION OF ORBITAL PHASE, AND THE DISAPPEARANCE OF THE PULSAR SIGNAL FOR 50 MINUTES DURING EACH ORBIT, IMPLIES THAT THE ECLIPSES ARE DUE TO A PULSAR-INDUCED WIND FLOWING OFF OF THE COMPANION. THE OPTICAL COUNTERPART IS A 21ST MAGNITUDE OBJECT WHICH VARIES IN INTENSITY OVER THE BINARY PERIOD; ACCURATE GROUND-BASED OBSERVATIONS ARE PREVENTED BY THE PROXIMITY (0.7") OF A 20TH MAGNITUDE K DWARF. WE PROPOSE TO OBSERVE THE OPTICAL COUNTERPART IN A TWO-PART STUDY. FIRST, THE WF/PC WILL PROVIDE ACCURATE MULTICOLOR PHOTOMETRY, ENABLING US TO DETERMINE UNCONTAMINATED MAGNITUDES AND COLORS BOTH AT MAXIMUM (ANTI-ECLIPSE) AS WELL AS AT MINIMUM (ECLIPSE). SECOND, WE PROPOSE TO OBSERVE THE EXPECTED UV LINE EMISSION WITH FOS, ALLOWING FOR AN INTIAL DETERMINATION OF THE TEMPERATURE AND DENSITY STRUCTURE AND ABUNDANCES OF THE WIND THAT IS BEING ABLATED FROM THE COMPANION. STUDY OF THIS UNIQUE SYSTEM HOLDS ENORMOUS POTENTIAL FOR THE UNDERSTANDING OF THE RADIATION FIELD OF A MILLISECOND PULSAR AND THE EVOLUTION OF LMXRBs AND MSPs IN GENERAL. WE EXPECT THESE OBSERVATIONS TO PLACE VERY SIGNIFICANT CONTRAINTS ON MODELS OF THIS UNIQUE OBJECT.

  19. COHERENTLY DEDISPERSED GATED IMAGING OF MILLISECOND PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Roy, Jayanta; Bhattacharyya, Bhaswati

    2013-03-10

    Motivated by the need for rapid localization of newly discovered faint millisecond pulsars (MSPs), we have developed a coherently dedispersed gating correlator. This gating correlator accounts for the orbital motions of MSPs in binaries while folding the visibilities with a best-fit topocentric rotational model derived from a periodicity search in a simultaneously generated beamformer output. Unique applications of the gating correlator for sensitive interferometric studies of MSPs are illustrated using the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope (GMRT) interferometric array. We could unambiguously localize five newly discovered Fermi MSPs in the on-off gated image plane with an accuracy of {+-}1''. Immediate knowledge of such a precise position enables the use of sensitive coherent beams of array telescopes for follow-up timing observations which substantially reduces the use of telescope time ({approx}20 Multiplication-Sign for the GMRT). In addition, a precise a priori astrometric position reduces the effect of large covariances in the timing fit (with discovery position, pulsar period derivative, and an unknown binary model), which in-turn accelerates the convergence to the initial timing model. For example, while fitting with the precise a priori position ({+-}1''), the timing model converges in about 100 days, accounting for the effect of covariance between the position and pulsar period derivative. Moreover, such accurate positions allow for rapid identification of pulsar counterparts at other wave bands. We also report a new methodology of in-beam phase calibration using the on-off gated image of the target pulsar, which provides optimal sensitivity of the coherent array removing possible temporal and spacial decoherences.

  20. Genesis stories for the millisecond pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ruderman, M. A.; Shaham, J.

    1983-01-01

    Theoretical models proposed to explain the origin of the millisecond pulsar (MP) PSR 1937+214 are reviewed, examining their ability to explain its low surface dipole magnetic field (B), its low birth temperature (less than 10 to the 8th K), the absence of a companion or remnant, and its low velocity perpendicular to the Galactic plane. The models discussed are a single isolated explosion forming a rapidly spinning neutron star, spin-up of a dead pulsar by accretion from a companion, collapse of an accreting spinning white dwarf, and fusion of a tight binary composed of two old neutron stars. Although all of the models have difficulties in explaining one or more of the MP characteristics, the second model is found to be most probable in the light of present knowledge. The lack of a companion is explained by its tidal disruption after it had fed the accreting pre-pulsar for 1 Gyr or more and its mass had decreased to about 0.01 solar mass. Neutron stars accreting in this way have been observed in Galactic-bulge X-ray sources.

  1. Electromagnetic Spindown of a Transient Accreting Millisecond Pulsar During Quiescence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melatos, A.; Mastrano, A.

    2016-02-01

    The measured spindown rates in quiescence of the transient accreting millisecond pulsars IGR J00291+5934, XTE J1751-305, SAX J1808.4-3658, and Swift J1756.9-2508 have been used to estimate the magnetic moments of these objects assuming standard magnetic dipole braking. It is shown that this approach leads to an overestimate if the amount of residual accretion is enough to distort the magnetosphere away from a force-free configuration through magnetospheric mass loading or crushing, so that the lever arm of the braking torque migrates inside the light cylinder. We derive an alternative spindown formula and calculate the residual accretion rates where the formula is applicable. As a demonstration we apply the alternative spindown formula to produce updated magnetic moment estimates for the four objects above. We note that based on current uncertain observations of quiescent accretion rates, magnetospheric mass loading and crushing are neither firmly indicated nor ruled out in these four objects. Because quiescent accretion rates are not measured directly (only upper limits are placed), without more data it is impossible to be confident about whether the thresholds for magnetospheric mass loading or crushing are reached or not.

  2. Accreting Millisecond Pulsars and Fundamental Physics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strohmayer, Tod

    2005-01-01

    X-ray emission from the surfaces of rapidly rotating neutron stars encodes information about their global properties as well as physical conditions locally. Detailed modelling of, for example, the energy dependent pulse profiles observed from accreting millisecond pulsars and thermonuclear burst oscillations can be used to derive constraints on the masses and radii of neutron stars. These measurements provide direct information on the properties of the dense matter equation of state of the supranuclear density matter in their interiors. Study of absorption lines created in the surface layers can also provide measurements of masses and radii, and may be able to probe aspects of relativistic gravity, such as frame dragging. I will discuss the results of recent efforts to carry out such measurements and their implications for the properties of dense matter.

  3. Cosmic-ray Positrons from Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Venter, C.; Kopp, A.; Harding, A. K.; Gonthier, P. L.; Büsching, I.

    2015-07-01

    Observations by the Fermi Large Area Telescope of γ-ray millisecond pulsar (MSP) light curves imply copious pair production in their magnetospheres, and not exclusively in those of younger pulsars. Such pair cascades may be a primary source of Galactic electrons and positrons, contributing to the observed enhancement in positron flux above ∼10 GeV. Fermi has also uncovered many new MSPs, impacting Galactic stellar population models. We investigate the contribution of Galactic MSPs to the flux of terrestrial cosmic-ray electrons and positrons. Our population synthesis code predicts the source properties of present-day MSPs. We simulate their pair spectra invoking an offset-dipole magnetic field. We also consider positrons and electrons that have been further accelerated to energies of several TeV by strong intrabinary shocks in black widow (BW) and redback (RB) systems. Since MSPs are not surrounded by pulsar wind nebulae or supernova shells, we assume that the pairs freely escape and undergo losses only in the intergalactic medium. We compute the transported pair spectra at Earth, following their diffusion and energy loss through the Galaxy. The predicted particle flux increases for non-zero offsets of the magnetic polar caps. Pair cascades from the magnetospheres of MSPs are only modest contributors around a few tens of GeV to the lepton fluxes measured by the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer, PAMELA, and Fermi, after which this component cuts off. The contribution by BWs and RBs may, however, reach levels of a few tens of percent at tens of TeV, depending on model parameters.

  4. Search for Millisecond Pulsars for the Pulsar Timing Array project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Milia, S.

    2012-03-01

    Pulsars are rapidly rotating highly magnetised neutron stars (i.e. ultra dense stars, where about one solar mass is concentrated in a sphere with a radius of ~ 10 km), which irradiate radio beams in a fashion similar to a lighthouse. As a consequence, whenever the beams cut our line of sight we perceive a radio pulses, one (or two) per pulsar rotation, with a frequency up to hundred of times a second. Owing to their compact nature, rapid spin and high inertia, pulsars are in general fairly stable rotators, hence the Times of Arrival (TOAs) of the pulses at a radio telescope can be used as the ticks of a clock. This holds true in particular for the sub­class of the millisecond pulsars (MSPs), having a spin period smaller than the conventional limit of 30 ms, whose very rapid rotation and relatively older age provide better rotational stability than the ordinary pulsars. Indeed, some MSPs rotate so regularly that they can rival the best atomic clocks on Earth over timespan of few months or years.This feature allows us to use MSPs as tools in a cosmic laboratory, by exploiting a procedure called timing, which consists in the repeated and regular measurement of the TOAs from a pulsar and then in the search for trends in the series of the TOAs over various timespans, from fraction of seconds to decades.For example the study of pulsars in binary systems has already provided the most stringent tests to date of General Relativity in strong gravitational fields and has unambiguously showed the occurrence of the emission of gravitational waves from a binary system comprising two massive bodies in a close orbit. In last decades a new exciting perspective has been opened, i.e. to use pulsars also for a direct detection of the so far elusive gravitational waves and thereby applying the pulsar timing for cosmological studies. In fact, the gravitational waves (GWs) going across our Galaxy pass over all the Galactic pulsars and the Earth, perturbing the space­time at the

  5. A glitch in the millisecond pulsar J0613-0200

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKee, J. W.; Janssen, G. H.; Stappers, B. W.; Lyne, A. G.; Caballero, R. N.; Lentati, L.; Desvignes, G.; Jessner, A.; Jordan, C. A.; Karuppusamy, R.; Kramer, M.; Cognard, I.; Champion, D. J.; Graikou, E.; Lazarus, P.; Osłowski, S.; Perrodin, D.; Shaifullah, G.; Tiburzi, C.; Verbiest, J. P. W.

    2016-09-01

    We present evidence for a small glitch in the spin evolution of the millisecond pulsar J0613-0200, using the EPTA Data Release 1.0, combined with Jodrell Bank analogue filterbank times of arrival (TOAs) recorded with the Lovell telescope and Effelsberg Pulsar Observing System TOAs. A spin frequency step of 0.82(3) nHz and frequency derivative step of -1.6(39) × 10-19 Hz s-1 are measured at the epoch of MJD 50888(30). After PSR B1821-24A, this is only the second glitch ever observed in a millisecond pulsar, with a fractional size in frequency of Δν/ν = 2.5(1) × 10-12, which is several times smaller than the previous smallest glitch. PSR J0613-0200 is used in gravitational wave searches with pulsar timing arrays, and is to date only the second such pulsar to have experienced a glitch in a combined 886 pulsar-years of observations. We find that accurately modelling the glitch does not impact the timing precision for pulsar timing array applications. We estimate that for the current set of millisecond pulsars included in the International Pulsar Timing Array, there is a probability of ˜50 per cent that another glitch will be observed in a timing array pulsar within 10 years.

  6. Spin-down of radio millisecond pulsars at genesis.

    PubMed

    Tauris, Thomas M

    2012-02-01

    Millisecond pulsars are old neutron stars that have been spun up to high rotational frequencies via accretion of mass from a binary companion star. An important issue for understanding the physics of the early spin evolution of millisecond pulsars is the impact of the expanding magnetosphere during the terminal stages of the mass-transfer process. Here, I report binary stellar evolution calculations that show that the braking torque acting on a neutron star, when the companion star decouples from its Roche lobe, is able to dissipate >50% of the rotational energy of the pulsar. This effect may explain the apparent difference in observed spin distributions between x-ray and radio millisecond pulsars and help account for the noticeable age discrepancy with their young white dwarf companions. PMID:22301314

  7. X-ray emission from two nearby millisecond pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thorsett, S. E.

    1994-01-01

    This grant, titled 'X-Ray Emission from Two Nearby Millisecond Pulsars,' included ROSAT observations of the nearby pulsars PSR J2322+20 and PSR J2019+24. Neither was detected, although the observations were among the most sensitive ever made towards millisecond pulsars, reaching 1.5 x 10(exp 29) and 2.7 x 10(exp 29) erg s(exp -1) (0.1-2.4 keV), respectively. This is about, or slightly below, the predicted level of emission from the Seward and Wang empirical prediction, based on an extrapolation from slower pulsars. To understand the significance of this result, we have compared these limits with observations of four other millisecond pulsars, taken from the ROSAT archives. Except for the case of PSR B1821-21, where we identified a possible x-ray counterpart, only upper limits on x-ray flux were obtained. From these results, we conclude that x-ray emission beaming does not follow the same dependence on pulsar period as that of radio emission: while millisecond pulsars have beaming fractions near unity in the radio, x-ray emission is observed only for favorable viewing geometries.

  8. Binary millisecond pulsar discovery via gamma-ray pulsations.

    PubMed

    Pletsch, H J; Guillemot, L; Fehrmann, H; Allen, B; Kramer, M; Aulbert, C; Ackermann, M; Ajello, M; de Angelis, A; Atwood, W B; Baldini, L; Ballet, J; Barbiellini, G; Bastieri, D; Bechtol, K; Bellazzini, R; Borgland, A W; Bottacini, E; Brandt, T J; Bregeon, J; Brigida, M; Bruel, P; Buehler, R; Buson, S; Caliandro, G A; Cameron, R A; Caraveo, P A; Casandjian, J M; Cecchi, C; Çelik, Ö; Charles, E; Chaves, R C G; Cheung, C C; Chiang, J; Ciprini, S; Claus, R; Cohen-Tanugi, J; Conrad, J; Cutini, S; D'Ammando, F; Dermer, C D; Digel, S W; Drell, P S; Drlica-Wagner, A; Dubois, R; Dumora, D; Favuzzi, C; Ferrara, E C; Franckowiak, A; Fukazawa, Y; Fusco, P; Gargano, F; Gehrels, N; Germani, S; Giglietto, N; Giordano, F; Giroletti, M; Godfrey, G; Grenier, I A; Grondin, M-H; Grove, J E; Guiriec, S; Hadasch, D; Hanabata, Y; Harding, A K; den Hartog, P R; Hayashida, M; Hays, E; Hill, A B; Hou, X; Hughes, R E; Jóhannesson, G; Jackson, M S; Jogler, T; Johnson, A S; Johnson, W N; Kataoka, J; Kerr, M; Knödlseder, J; Kuss, M; Lande, J; Larsson, S; Latronico, L; Lemoine-Goumard, M; Longo, F; Loparco, F; Lovellette, M N; Lubrano, P; Massaro, F; Mayer, M; Mazziotta, M N; McEnery, J E; Mehault, J; Michelson, P F; Mitthumsiri, W; Mizuno, T; Monzani, M E; Morselli, A; Moskalenko, I V; Murgia, S; Nakamori, T; Nemmen, R; Nuss, E; Ohno, M; Ohsugi, T; Omodei, N; Orienti, M; Orlando, E; de Palma, F; Paneque, D; Perkins, J S; Piron, F; Pivato, G; Porter, T A; Rainò, S; Rando, R; Ray, P S; Razzano, M; Reimer, A; Reimer, O; Reposeur, T; Ritz, S; Romani, R W; Romoli, C; Sanchez, D A; Saz Parkinson, P M; Schulz, A; Sgrò, C; do Couto e Silva, E; Siskind, E J; Smith, D A; Spandre, G; Spinelli, P; Suson, D J; Takahashi, H; Tanaka, T; Thayer, J B; Thayer, J G; Thompson, D J; Tibaldo, L; Tinivella, M; Troja, E; Usher, T L; Vandenbroucke, J; Vasileiou, V; Vianello, G; Vitale, V; Waite, A P; Winer, B L; Wood, K S; Wood, M; Yang, Z; Zimmer, S

    2012-12-01

    Millisecond pulsars, old neutron stars spun up by accreting matter from a companion star, can reach high rotation rates of hundreds of revolutions per second. Until now, all such "recycled" rotation-powered pulsars have been detected by their spin-modulated radio emission. In a computing-intensive blind search of gamma-ray data from the Fermi Large Area Telescope (with partial constraints from optical data), we detected a 2.5-millisecond pulsar, PSR J1311-3430. This unambiguously explains a formerly unidentified gamma-ray source that had been a decade-long enigma, confirming previous conjectures. The pulsar is in a circular orbit with an orbital period of only 93 minutes, the shortest of any spin-powered pulsar binary ever found. PMID:23112297

  9. An eccentric binary millisecond pulsar in the galactic plane.

    PubMed

    Champion, David J; Ransom, Scott M; Lazarus, Patrick; Camilo, Fernando; Bassa, Cees; Kaspi, Victoria M; Nice, David J; Freire, Paulo C C; Stairs, Ingrid H; van Leeuwen, Joeri; Stappers, Ben W; Cordes, James M; Hessels, Jason W T; Lorimer, Duncan R; Arzoumanian, Zaven; Backer, Don C; Bhat, N D Ramesh; Chatterjee, Shami; Cognard, Ismaël; Deneva, Julia S; Faucher-Giguère, Claude-André; Gaensler, Bryan M; Han, Jinlin; Jenet, Fredrick A; Kasian, Laura; Kondratiev, Vlad I; Kramer, Michael; Lazio, Joseph; McLaughlin, Maura A; Venkataraman, Arun; Vlemmings, Wouter

    2008-06-01

    Binary pulsar systems are superb probes of stellar and binary evolution and the physics of extreme environments. In a survey with the Arecibo telescope, we have found PSR J1903+0327, a radio pulsar with a rotational period of 2.15 milliseconds in a highly eccentric (e = 0.44) 95-day orbit around a solar mass (M(middle dot in circle)) companion. Infrared observations identify a possible main-sequence companion star. Conventional binary stellar evolution models predict neither large orbital eccentricities nor main-sequence companions around millisecond pulsars. Alternative formation scenarios involve recycling a neutron star in a globular cluster, then ejecting it into the Galactic disk, or membership in a hierarchical triple system. A relativistic analysis of timing observations of the pulsar finds its mass to be 1.74 +/- 0.04 M solar symbol, an unusually high value. PMID:18483399

  10. Timing and searching millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amico, Nichi; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Johnston, Simon; Kramer, Michael; Sarkissian, John; Lyne, Andrew; Burgay, Marta; Corongiu, Alessandro; Camilo, Fernando; Bailes, Matthew

    2009-10-01

    Timing the dozen pulsars discovered in P303 is ensuring high quality results: (a) the peculiarities (in position or projected acceleration) of all the 5 millisecond pulsars in NGC6752 suggested the presence of non thermal dynamics in the core, perhaps due to black-holes of intermediate mass; (b) the eclipsing pulsar in NGC6397 is a stereotype for studying the late evolution of exotic binaries. We propose to continue our timing project focusing mostly on NGC6752 at 20cm (in order to measure additional parameters useful to constrain the existence of a black-hole) and NGC6397 at 10cm (for studying the eclipse region and the orbital secular evolution). We also request time for performing pilot observations for a new deeper than ever search for millisecond pulsars in a subset of suitable clusters. This revamped search (as well as the requested timing observations) will exploit the new back-ends (APSR and DFB4) now available at Parkes.

  11. Timing and searching millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amico, Nichi; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Johnston, Simon; Kramer, Michael; Sarkissian, John; Lyne, Andrew; Burgay, Marta; Corongiu, Alessandro; Camilo, Fernando; Bailes, Matthew; van Straten, Willem

    2010-04-01

    Timing the dozen pulsars discovered in P303 is ensuring high quality results: (a) the peculiarities (in position or projected acceleration) of all the 5 millisecond pulsars in NGC6752 suggested the presence of non thermal dynamics in the core, perhaps due to black-holes of intermediate mass; (b) the eclipsing pulsar in NGC6397 is a stereotype for studying the late evolution of exotic binaries. We propose to continue our timing project focusing mostly on NGC6752 at 20cm (in order to measure additional parameters useful to constrain the existence of a black-hole) and NGC6397 at 10cm (for studying the eclipse region and the orbital secular evolution). We also request time for performing observations for a new deeper than ever search for millisecond pulsars in a subset of suitable clusters. This revamped search (as well as the requested timing observations) will exploit the new back-ends (APSR and DFB4) now available at Parkes.

  12. An Eccentric Binary Millisecond Pulsar in the Galactic Plane

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Champion, David J.; Ransom, Scott M.; Lazarus, Patrick; Camilo, Fernando; Bassa, Cess; Kaspi, Victoria M.; Nice, David J.; Freire, Paulo C. C.; Stairs, Ingrid H.; vanLeeuwen, Joeri; Stappers, Ben W.; Cordes, James M.; Hessels, Jason W. T.; Lorimer, Duncan R.; Arzoumanian, Zaven; Backer, Don C.; Bhat, N. D. Ramesh; Chatterjee, Shami; Cognard, Ismael; Deneva, Julia S.; Faucher-Giguere, Claude-Andre; Gaensler, Bryan M.; Han, JinLin; Jenet, Fredrick A.; Kasian, Laura

    2008-01-01

    Binary pulsar systems are superb probes of stellar and binary evolution and the physics of extreme environments. In a survey with the Arecibo telescope, we have found PSR J1903+0327, a radio pulsar with a rotational period of 2.15 milliseconds in a highly eccentric (e = 0.44) 95-day orbit around a solar mass (M.) companion. Infrared observations identify a possible main-sequence companion star. Conventional binary stellar evolution models predict neither large orbital eccentricities nor main-sequence companions around millisecond pulsars. Alternative formation scenarios involve recycling a neutron star in a globular cluster, then ejecting it into the Galactic disk, or membership in a hierarchical triple system. A relativistic analysis of timing observations of the pulsar finds its mass to be 1.74 +/- 0.04 Solar Mass, an unusually high value.

  13. X-Ray States of Redback Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Linares, M.

    2014-11-01

    Compact binary millisecond pulsars with main-sequence donors, often referred to as "redbacks," constitute the long-sought link between low-mass X-ray binaries and millisecond radio pulsars and offer a unique probe of the interaction between pulsar winds and accretion flows. We present a systematic study of eight nearby redbacks, using more than 100 observations obtained with Swift's X-ray Telescope. We distinguish between three main states: pulsar, disk, and outburst states. We find X-ray mode switching in the disk state of PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270-4859, similar to what was found in the other redback that showed evidence for accretion: rapid, recurrent changes in X-ray luminosity (0.5-10 keV, L X), between (6-9) × 1032 erg s-1 (disk-passive state) and (3-5) × 1033 erg s-1 (disk-active state). This strongly suggests that mode switching—which has not been observed in quiescent low-mass X-ray binaries—is universal among redback millisecond pulsars in the disk state. We briefly explore the implications for accretion disk truncation and find that the inferred magnetospheric radius in the disk state of PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270-4859 lies outside the light cylinder. Finally, we note that all three redbacks that have developed accretion disks have relatively high L X in the pulsar state (>1032 erg s-1).

  14. A millisecond pulsar in an extremely wide binary system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bassa, C. G.; Janssen, G. H.; Stappers, B. W.; Tauris, T. M.; Wevers, T.; Jonker, P. G.; Lentati, L.; Verbiest, J. P. W.; Desvignes, G.; Graikou, E.; Guillemot, L.; Freire, P. C. C.; Lazarus, P.; Caballero, R. N.; Champion, D. J.; Cognard, I.; Jessner, A.; Jordan, C.; Karuppusamy, R.; Kramer, M.; Lazaridis, K.; Lee, K. J.; Liu, K.; Lyne, A. G.; McKee, J.; Osłowski, S.; Perrodin, D.; Sanidas, S.; Shaifullah, G.; Smits, R.; Theureau, G.; Tiburzi, C.; Zhu, W. W.

    2016-08-01

    We report on 22 yrs of radio timing observations of the millisecond pulsar J1024$-$0719 by the telescopes participating in the European Pulsar Timing Array (EPTA). These observations reveal a significant second derivative of the pulsar spin frequency and confirm the discrepancy between the parallax and Shklovskii distances that has been reported earlier. We also present optical astrometry, photometry and spectroscopy of 2MASS J10243869$-$0719190. We find that it is a low-metallicity main-sequence star (K7V spectral type, $\\mathrm{[M/H]}=-1.0$, $T_\\mathrm{eff}=4050\\pm50$ K) and that its position, proper motion and distance are consistent with those of PSR J1024$-$0719. We conclude that PSR J1024$-$0719 and 2MASS J10243869$-$0719190 form a common proper motion pair and are gravitationally bound. The gravitational interaction between the main-sequence star and the pulsar accounts for the spin frequency derivatives, which in turn resolves the distance discrepancy. Our observations suggest that the pulsar and main-sequence star are in an extremely wide ($P_\\mathrm{b}>200$ yr) orbit. Combining the radial velocity of the companion and proper motion of the pulsar, we find that the binary system has a high spatial velocity of $384\\pm45$ km s$^{-1}$ with respect to the local standard of rest and has a Galactic orbit consistent with halo objects. Since the observed main-sequence companion star cannot have recycled the pulsar to millisecond spin periods, an exotic formation scenario is required. We demonstrate that this extremely wide-orbit binary could have evolved from a triple system that underwent an asymmetric supernova explosion, though find that significant fine-tuning during the explosion is required. Finally, we discuss the implications of the long period orbit on the timing stability of PSR J1024$-$0719 in light of its inclusion in pulsar timing arrays.

  15. A millisecond pulsar in an extremely wide binary system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bassa, C. G.; Janssen, G. H.; Stappers, B. W.; Tauris, T. M.; Wevers, T.; Jonker, P. G.; Lentati, L.; Verbiest, J. P. W.; Desvignes, G.; Graikou, E.; Guillemot, L.; Freire, P. C. C.; Lazarus, P.; Caballero, R. N.; Champion, D. J.; Cognard, I.; Jessner, A.; Jordan, C.; Karuppusamy, R.; Kramer, M.; Lazaridis, K.; Lee, K. J.; Liu, K.; Lyne, A. G.; McKee, J.; Osłowski, S.; Perrodin, D.; Sanidas, S.; Shaifullah, G.; Smits, R.; Theureau, G.; Tiburzi, C.; Zhu, W. W.

    2016-08-01

    We report on 22 yr of radio timing observations of the millisecond pulsar J1024-0719 by the telescopes participating in the European Pulsar Timing Array (EPTA). These observations reveal a significant second derivative of the pulsar spin frequency and confirm the discrepancy between the parallax and Shklovskii distances that has been reported earlier. We also present optical astrometry, photometry and spectroscopy of 2MASS J10243869-0719190. We find that it is a low-metallicity main-sequence star (K7V spectral type, [M/H] = -1.0, Teff = 4050 ± 50 K) and that its position, proper motion and distance are consistent with those of PSR J1024-0719. We conclude that PSR J1024-0719 and 2MASS J10243869-0719190 form a common proper motion pair and are gravitationally bound. The gravitational interaction between the main-sequence star and the pulsar accounts for the spin frequency derivatives, which in turn resolves the distance discrepancy. Our observations suggest that the pulsar and main-sequence star are in an extremely wide (Pb > 200 yr) orbit. Combining the radial velocity of the companion and proper motion of the pulsar, we find that the binary system has a high spatial velocity of 384 ± 45 km s-1 with respect to the local standard of rest and has a Galactic orbit consistent with halo objects. Since the observed main-sequence companion star cannot have recycled the pulsar to millisecond spin periods, an exotic formation scenario is required. We demonstrate that this extremely wide-orbit binary could have evolved from a triple system that underwent an asymmetric supernova explosion, though find that significant fine-tuning during the explosion is required. Finally, we discuss the implications of the long period orbit on the timing stability of PSR J1024-0719 in light of its inclusion in pulsar timing arrays.

  16. Ten Years Timing of Millisecond Pulsars at Kalyazin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ilyasov, Yu. P.; Oreshko, V. V.

    2006-08-01

    Precise timing of millisecond binary pulsars has been started at Kalyazin radio astronomical observatory since 1995. (Tver' region, Russia). Binary pulsars: J0613-02, J1020+10, J1640+22, J1643-12, J1713+07, J2145-07 and isolated millisecond pulsar B1937+21 have been included among the Kalayazin Pulsar Timing Array (KPTA). The Backer's pulsar B1937+21 is being monitored at Kalyazin observatory (0.6 GHz) and Kashima space research centre of the National Institute of Communication Technology (NICT, Japan) (2.2 GHz) simultaneously from 1996, as well. .At Kalyazin pulsars are observed at 0.6 GHz by a full steerable 64-m dish radio telescope RT-64 of the Special Research Bureau of the Moscow Power Engineering Institute. Filter-bank receiver of PRAO Lebedev Physical Institute is used for observations in two circular polarizations by 80 channels per each. Bandwidth per channel is 40 kHz, so total band is 3.2 MHz and time resolution is about 10 μs per channel. Now a perfect data base of pulses Time of Arrival (TOA) are collected with refer to the Solar system barycenter for about 10 years period. Main aim is: a) to study Pulsar Time and to establish a long-term standard of time based on pulsars ensemble as space long life clock alternative to atomic standards; b) to detect gravitational waves extremely low frequency belong to the Gravity Wave Background - GWB. After ten years monitoring of B1937+21 its timing noise is looking as "white phase noise" with RMS about 1.8 μs.( Fractional instability is about 6.10^-15). After these data and timing results of binary pulsar J1640+22 gravitational natural GWB upper limit should be reduced till to less than Ω[g]h^2 <10^-7-10^ -9 . Secular changes of DM toward millisecond pulsar B1937+21 was revealed after long time two frequency timing observations (Kalyazin -0,6 and Kashima -2.3).

  17. X-ray states of redback millisecond pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Linares, M.

    2014-11-01

    Compact binary millisecond pulsars with main-sequence donors, often referred to as 'redbacks', constitute the long-sought link between low-mass X-ray binaries and millisecond radio pulsars and offer a unique probe of the interaction between pulsar winds and accretion flows. We present a systematic study of eight nearby redbacks, using more than 100 observations obtained with Swift's X-ray Telescope. We distinguish between three main states: pulsar, disk, and outburst states. We find X-ray mode switching in the disk state of PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270-4859, similar to what was found in the other redback that showed evidence for accretion: rapid, recurrent changes in X-ray luminosity (0.5-10 keV, L {sub X}), between (6-9) × 10{sup 32} erg s{sup –1} (disk-passive state) and (3-5) × 10{sup 33} erg s{sup –1} (disk-active state). This strongly suggests that mode switching—which has not been observed in quiescent low-mass X-ray binaries—is universal among redback millisecond pulsars in the disk state. We briefly explore the implications for accretion disk truncation and find that the inferred magnetospheric radius in the disk state of PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270-4859 lies outside the light cylinder. Finally, we note that all three redbacks that have developed accretion disks have relatively high L {sub X} in the pulsar state (>10{sup 32} erg s{sup –1}).

  18. On Detecting Millisecond Pulsars at the Galactic Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Macquart, Jean-Pierre; Kanekar, Nissim

    2015-06-01

    The lack of detected pulsars at the Galactic Center (GC) region is a long-standing mystery. We argue that the high stellar density in the central parsec around the GC is likely to result in a pulsar population dominated by millisecond pulsars (MSPs), similar to the situation in globular cluster environments. Earlier GC pulsar searches have been largely insensitive to such an MSP population, accounting for the lack of pulsar detections. We estimate the best search frequency for such an MSP population with present and upcoming broad-band radio telescopes for two possible scattering scenarios, the “weak-scattering” case suggested by the recent detection of a magnetar close to the GC, and the “strong-scattering” case, with the scattering screen located close to the GC. The optimal search frequencies are ≈8 GHz (weak-scattering) and ≈25 GHz (strong-scattering), for pulsars with periods 1-20 ms, assuming that GC pulsars have a luminosity distribution similar to that those in the rest of the Milky Way. We find that 10-30 hr integrations with the Very Large Array and the Green Bank Telescope would be sufficient to detect MSPs at the GC distance in the weak-scattering case. However, if the strong-scattering case is indeed applicable to the GC, observations with the full Square Kilometre Array would be needed to detect the putative MSP population.

  19. Accreting Millisecond Pulsars: Neutron Star Masses and Radii

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strohmayer, Tod

    2004-01-01

    High amplitude X-ray brightness oscillations during thermonuclear X-ray bursts were discovered with the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) in early 1996. Spectral and timing evidence strongly supports the conclusion that these oscillations are caused by rotational modulation of the burst emission and that they reveal the spin frequency of neutron stars in low mass X-ray binaries. The recent discovery of X-ray burst oscillations from two accreting millisecond pulsars has confirmed this basic picture and provided a new route to measuring neutron star properties and constraining the dense matter equation of state. I will briefly summarize the current observational understanding of accreting millisecond pulsars, and describe recent attempts to determine the mass and radius of the neutron star in XTE J1814-338.

  20. How to get the reduced B fields of millisecond pulsars: Flux expulsion by spindown before the LMXB phase

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alpar, Mehmet Ali; Gügercinoǧlu, Erbil

    2016-07-01

    The physical interaction between quantized flux lines of the Type II proton superconductor and the quantized vortex lines of the neutron superfluid is re-visited. Srinivasan et al. (1990) had proposed that this interaction led to reduction of the magnetic field to the B ˜10^9 G range as the flux lines were expelled together with vortex lines during the spindown of the neutron star in an early epoch of binary evolution. The model is discussed with reference to spindown by the wind from the companion prior to the Roche lobe filling LMXB phase. An evolutionary model for the magnetic field and the rotation rate is presented, with application to the 11 Hz accreting pulsar in the LMXB IGR J17480-2446 in Terzan 5 (Patruno et al 2012) as well as 'standard' accreting and radio millisecond pulsar evolution.

  1. Three Millisecond Pulsars in Fermi LAT Unassociated Bright Sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Camilo, F.; Roberts, M. S. E.; Celik, O.; Wolff, M. T.; Cheung, C. C.; Kerr, M.; Pennucci, T.; DeCesar, M. E.; Cognard, I.; Lyne, A. G.; Stappers, B. W.; Freire, P. C. C.; Grove, J. E.; Abdo, A. A.; Desvignes, G.; Donato, D.; Ferrara, E. C.; Gehrels, N.; Guillemot, L.; Gwon, C.; Johnston, S.; Harding, A. K.; Thompson, D. J.

    2010-01-01

    We searched for radio pulsars in 25 of the non-variable, unassociated sources in the Fermi LAT Bright Source List with the Green Bank Telescope at 820 MHz. We report the discovery of three radio and gamma-ray millisecond pulsar (MSPs) from a high Galactic latitude subset of these sources. All of the pulsars are in binary systems, which would have made them virtually impossible to detect in blind gamma-ray pulsation searches. They seem to be relatively normal, nearby (<= 2 kpc) MSPs. These observations, in combination with the Fermi detection of gamma-rays from other known radio MSPs, imply that most, if not all, radio MSPs are efficient gamma-ray producers. The gamma-ray spectra of the pulsars are power law in nature with exponential cutoffs at a few Ge V, as has been found with most other pulsars. The MSPs have all been detected as X-ray point sources. Their soft X-ray luminosities of approx 10(exp 30) - 10(exp 31) erg/s are typical of the rare radio MSPs seen in X-rays.

  2. High-Precision Timing of Several Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferdman, R. D.; Stairs, I. H.; Backer, D. C.; Ramachandran, R.; Demorest, P.; Nice, D. J.; Lyne, A. G.; Kramer, M.; Lorimer, D.; McLaughlin, M.; Manchester, D.; Camilo, F.; D'Amico, N.; Possenti, A.; Burgay, M.; Joshi, B. C.; Freire, P. C.

    2004-12-01

    The highest precision pulsar timing is achieved by reproducing as accurately as possible the pulse profile as emitted by the pulsar, in high signal-to-noise observations. The best profile reconstruction can be accomplished with several-bit voltage sampling and coherent removal of the dispersion suffered by pulsar signals as they traverse the interstellar medium. The Arecibo Signal Processor (ASP) and its counterpart the Green Bank Astronomical Signal Processor (GASP) are flexible, state-of-the-art wide-bandwidth observing systems, built primarily for high-precision long-term timing of millisecond and binary pulsars. ASP and GASP are in use at the 300-m Arecibo telescope in Puerto Rico and the 100-m Green Bank Telescope in Green Bank, West Virginia, respectively, taking advantage of the enormous sensitivities of these telescopes. These instruments result in high-precision science through 4 and 8-bit sampling and perform coherent dedispersion on the incoming data stream in real or near-real time. This is done using a network of personal computers, over an observing bandwidth of 64 to 128 MHz, in each of two polarizations. We present preliminary results of timing and polarimetric observations with ASP/GASP for several pulsars, including the recently-discovered relativistic double-pulsar binary J0737-3039. These data are compared to simultaneous observations with other pulsar instruments, such as the new "spigot card" spectrometer on the GBT and the Princeton Mark IV instrument at Arecibo, the precursor timing system to ASP. We also briefly discuss several upcoming observations with ASP/GASP.

  3. On neutron star structure and the millisecond pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, A. K.

    1983-01-01

    The recently discovered millisecond pulsar (PSR1937-214) is observed to be rotating close to the limit of dynamical instability for a neutron star. Despite its extremely rapid rotation, measurements of the period derivative put a stringent upper limit on the energy loss from gravitational radiation, thus requiring that the quadrupole moment be quite small. The pulsar must also be rotating below the critical frequency at which its equilibrium configuration would become non-axisymmetric, since the lifetime of this configuration against decay by gravitational radiation is very short. This critical frequency, given by the theory of rotating ellipsoids, imposes a restriction on the rotation rate more severe than the break-up frequency and may be used to set a lower limit, rho 2 x 10 to the 14th power g/cu cm, on the density of the star. If the mass is 0.5 - 1.5 solar mass, several of the stiffer neutron star equations of state may be ruled out, and the radius should be less than 16 km. The condition for axisymmetry also imposes an upper limit on the rotation rate to which neutron stars may be spun up by accretion disks in binary systems, a model recently proposed for the evolution of the millisecond pulsar.

  4. High-Energy Emission at Shocks in Millisecond Pulsar Binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kust Harding, Alice; Wadiasingh, Zorawar; Venter, Christo; Boettcher, Markus

    2016-04-01

    A large number of new Black Widow (BW) and Redback (RB) energetic millisecond pulsars have been discovered through radio searches of unidentified Fermi sources, increasing the known number of these systems from 4 to 28. We model the high-energy emission components from particles accelerated to several TeV in intrabinary shocks in BW and RB systems, and their predicted modulation at the binary orbital period. Synchrotron emission is expected at X-ray energies and such modulated emission has already been detected by Chandra and XMM. Inverse Compton emission from accelerated particles scattering the UV emission from the radiated companion star is expected in the Fermi and TeV bands. Detections or constraints on this emission will probe the unknown physics of pulsar winds.

  5. CVs and millisecond pulsar progenitors in globular clusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grindlay, J. E.; Cool, A. M.; Bailyn, C. D.

    1991-01-01

    The recent discovery of a large population of millisecond pulsars in globular clusters, together with earlier studies of both low luminosity X-ray sources and LMXBs in globulars, suggest there should be significant numbers of CVs in globulars. Although they have been searched for without success in selected cluster X-ray source fields, systematic surveys are lacking and would constrain binary production and both stellar and dynamical evolution in globular clusters. We describe the beginnings of such a search, using narrow band H-alpha imaging, and the sensitivities it might achieve.

  6. A millisecond pulsar in a stellar triple system.

    PubMed

    Ransom, S M; Stairs, I H; Archibald, A M; Hessels, J W T; Kaplan, D L; van Kerkwijk, M H; Boyles, J; Deller, A T; Chatterjee, S; Schechtman-Rook, A; Berndsen, A; Lynch, R S; Lorimer, D R; Karako-Argaman, C; Kaspi, V M; Kondratiev, V I; McLaughlin, M A; van Leeuwen, J; Rosen, R; Roberts, M S E; Stovall, K

    2014-01-23

    Gravitationally bound three-body systems have been studied for hundreds of years and are common in our Galaxy. They show complex orbital interactions, which can constrain the compositions, masses and interior structures of the bodies and test theories of gravity, if sufficiently precise measurements are available. A triple system containing a radio pulsar could provide such measurements, but the only previously known such system, PSR B1620-26 (refs 7, 8; with a millisecond pulsar, a white dwarf, and a planetary-mass object in an orbit of several decades), shows only weak interactions. Here we report precision timing and multiwavelength observations of PSR J0337+1715, a millisecond pulsar in a hierarchical triple system with two other stars. Strong gravitational interactions are apparent and provide the masses of the pulsar M[Symbol: see text](1.4378(13), where M[Symbol: see text]is the solar mass and the parentheses contain the uncertainty in the final decimal places) and the two white dwarf companions (0.19751(15)M[Symbol: see text] and 0.4101(3))M[Symbol: see text], as well as the inclinations of the orbits (both about 39.2°). The unexpectedly coplanar and nearly circular orbits indicate a complex and exotic evolutionary past that differs from those of known stellar systems. The gravitational field of the outer white dwarf strongly accelerates the inner binary containing the neutron star, and the system will thus provide an ideal laboratory in which to test the strong equivalence principle of general relativity. PMID:24390352

  7. IS IGR J11014-6103 A PULSAR WITH THE HIGHEST KNOWN KICK VELOCITY?

    SciTech Connect

    Tomsick, John A.; Bodaghee, Arash; Fornasini, Francesca; Rodriguez, Jerome; Chaty, Sylvain; Rahoui, Farid

    2012-05-10

    We report on Chandra X-ray and Parkes radio observations of IGR J11014-6103, which is a possible pulsar wind nebula with a complex X-ray morphology and a likely radio counterpart. With the superb angular resolution of Chandra, we find evidence that a portion of the extended emission may be related to a bow shock due to the putative pulsar moving through the interstellar medium. The inferred direction of motion is consistent with IGR J11014-6103 having been born in the event that produced the supernova remnant (SNR) MSH 11-61A. If this association is correct, then previous constraints on the expansion of MSH 11-61A imply a transverse velocity for IGR J11014-6103 of 2400-2900 km s{sup -1}, depending on the SNR model used. This would surpass the kick velocities of any known pulsars and rival or surpass the velocities of any compact objects that are associated with SNRs. While it is important to confirm the nature of the source, our radio pulsation search did not yield a detection.

  8. Challenges in explaining the Galactic Center gamma-ray excess with millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cholis, Ilias; Hooper, Dan; Linden, Tim

    2015-06-01

    Millisecond pulsars have been discussed as a possible source of the gamma-ray excess observed from the region surrounding the Galactic Center. With this in mind, we use the observed population of bright low-mass X-ray binaries to estimate the number of millisecond pulsars in the Inner Galaxy. This calculation suggests that only ~ 1-5% of the excess is produced by millisecond pulsars. We also use the luminosity function derived from local measurements of millisecond pulsars, along with the number of point sources resolved by Fermi, to calculate an upper limit for the diffuse emission from such a population. While this limit is compatible with the millisecond pulsar population implied by the number of low-mass X-ray binaries, it strongly excludes the possibility that most of the excess originates from such objects.

  9. Turn-over in pulsar spectra: From young pulsars to millisecond ones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kijak, J.; Lewandowski, W.; Serylak, M.

    2008-02-01

    The evidence for turn-over in young pulsar radio spectra at high frequencies is presented. The frequency at which a spectrum shows the maximum flux density is called the peak frequency. This peak frequency appears to depend on pulsar age and dispersion measure. A possible relation with pulsar age is interesting. Millisecond pulsars, which are very old objects, may show no evidence for spectral turn-over down to 100 MHz. Some studied pulsars with turn-over at high frequencies have been shown to have very interesting interstellar environments. This could suggest that the turn-over phenomenon is associated with the enviromental conditions around the neutron stars, rahter than being related intrinsically with the radio emission mechanism. Although there are no earlier reports of such a connection, a more detailed study on larger sample of pulsars is needed to address this idea more quantitatively. In this context, future observations below 200 MHz using LOFAR will allow us to investigate turn-over in radio pulsar spectra.

  10. RADIO AND GAMMA-RAY PULSED EMISSION FROM MILLISECOND PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Du, Y. J.; Chen, D.; Qiao, G. J.

    2013-01-20

    Pulsed {gamma}-ray emission from millisecond pulsars (MSPs) has been detected by the sensitive Fermi space telescope, which sheds light on studies of the emission region and its mechanism. In particular, the specific patterns of radio and {gamma}-ray emission from PSR J0101-6422 challenge the popular pulsar models, e.g., outer gap and two-pole caustic models. Using the three-dimensional annular gap model, we have jointly simulated radio and {gamma}-ray light curves for three representative MSPs (PSR J0034-0534, PSR J0101-6422, and PSR J0437-4715) with distinct radio phase lags, and present the best simulated results for these MSPs, particularly for PSR J0101-6422 with complex radio and {gamma}-ray pulse profiles, and for PSR J0437-4715 with a radio interpulse. We have found that both the {gamma}-ray and radio emission originate from the annular gap region located in only one magnetic pole, and the radio emission region is not primarily lower than the {gamma}-ray region in most cases. In addition, the annular gap model with a small magnetic inclination angle instead of an 'orthogonal rotator' can account for the MSPs' radio interpulse with a large phase separation from the main pulse. The annular gap model is a self-consistent model not only for young pulsars but also MSPs, and multi-wavelength light curves can be fundamentally explained using this model.

  11. Timing of Five Millisecond Pulsars Discovered in the PALFA Survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scholz, P.; Kaspi, V. M.; Lyne, A. G.; Stappers, B. W.; Bogdanov, S.; Cordes, J. M.; Crawford, F.; Ferdman, R. D.; Freire, P. C. C.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Lorimer, D. R.; Stairs, I. H.; Allen, B.; Brazier, A.; Camilo, F.; Cardoso, R. F.; Chatterjee, S.; Deneva, J. S.; Jenet, F. A.; Karako-Argaman, C.; Knispel, B.; Lazarus, P.; Lee, K. J.; van Leeuwen, J.; Lynch, R.; Madsen, E. C.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Ransom, S. M.; Siemens, X.; Spitler, L. G.; Stovall, K.; Swiggum, J. K.; Venkataraman, A.; Zhu, W. W.

    2015-02-01

    We present the discovery of five millisecond pulsars (MSPs) from the PALFA Galactic plane survey using Arecibo. Four of these (PSRs J0557+1551, J1850+0244, J1902+0300, and J1943+2210) are binary pulsars whose companions are likely white dwarfs, and one (PSR J1905+0453) is isolated. Phase-coherent timing solutions, ranging from ~1 to ~3 yr in length, and based on observations from the Jodrell Bank and Arecibo telescopes, provide precise determinations of spin, orbital, and astrometric parameters. All five pulsars have large dispersion measures (>100 pc cm-3, within the top 20% of all known Galactic field MSPs) and are faint (1.4 GHz flux density lsim0.1 mJy, within the faintest 5% of all known Galactic field MSPs), illustrating PALFA's ability to find increasingly faint, distant MSPs in the Galactic plane. In particular, PSR J1850+0244 has a dispersion measure of 540 pc cm-3, the highest of all known MSPs. Such distant, faint MSPs are important input for accurately modeling the total Galactic MSP population.

  12. High-energy emission of the first millisecond pulsar

    SciTech Connect

    Ng, C.-Y.; Takata, J.; Leung, G. C. K.; Cheng, K. S.; Philippopoulos, P.

    2014-06-01

    We report on X-ray and gamma-ray observations of the millisecond pulsar (MSP) B1937+21 taken with the Chandra X-ray Observatory, XMM-Newton, and the Fermi Large Area Telescope. The pulsar X-ray emission shows a purely non-thermal spectrum with a hard photon index of 0.9 ± 0.1, and is nearly 100% pulsed. We found no evidence of varying pulse profile with energy as previously claimed. We also analyzed 5.5 yr of Fermi survey data and obtained much improved constraints on the pulsar's timing and spectral properties in gamma-rays. The pulsed spectrum is adequately fitted by a simple power-law with a photon index of 2.38 ± 0.07. Both the gamma-ray and X-ray pulse profiles show similar two-peak structure and generally align with the radio peaks. We found that the aligned profiles and the hard spectrum in X-rays seem to be common properties among MSPs with high magnetic fields at the light cylinder. We discuss a possible physical scenario that could give rise to these features.

  13. High-energy Emission of the First Millisecond Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ng, C.-Y.; Takata, J.; Leung, G. C. K.; Cheng, K. S.; Philippopoulos, P.

    2014-06-01

    We report on X-ray and gamma-ray observations of the millisecond pulsar (MSP) B1937+21 taken with the Chandra X-ray Observatory, XMM-Newton, and the Fermi Large Area Telescope. The pulsar X-ray emission shows a purely non-thermal spectrum with a hard photon index of 0.9 ± 0.1, and is nearly 100% pulsed. We found no evidence of varying pulse profile with energy as previously claimed. We also analyzed 5.5 yr of Fermi survey data and obtained much improved constraints on the pulsar's timing and spectral properties in gamma-rays. The pulsed spectrum is adequately fitted by a simple power-law with a photon index of 2.38 ± 0.07. Both the gamma-ray and X-ray pulse profiles show similar two-peak structure and generally align with the radio peaks. We found that the aligned profiles and the hard spectrum in X-rays seem to be common properties among MSPs with high magnetic fields at the light cylinder. We discuss a possible physical scenario that could give rise to these features.

  14. Cyclic spectroscopy of the millisecond pulsar, B1937+21

    SciTech Connect

    Walker, Mark A.; Van Straten, Willem E-mail: pdemores@nrao.edu

    2013-12-20

    Cyclic spectroscopy is a signal processing technique that was originally developed for engineering applications and has recently been introduced into the field of pulsar astronomy. It is a powerful technique with many attractive features, not least of which is the explicit rendering of information about the relative phases in any filtering imposed on the signal, thus making holography a more straightforward proposition. Here we present methods for determining optimum estimates of both the filter itself and the statistics of the unfiltered signal, starting from a measured cyclic spectrum. In the context of radio pulsars these quantities tell us the impulse response of the interstellar medium (ISM) and the intrinsic pulse profile. We demonstrate our techniques by application to 428 MHz Arecibo data on the millisecond pulsar B1937+21, obtaining the pulse profile free from the effects of interstellar scattering. As expected, the intrinsic profile exhibits main- and inter-pulse components that are narrower than they appear in the scattered profile; it also manifests some weak, but sharp, features that are revealed for the first time at low frequency. We determine the structure of the received electric field envelope as a function of delay and Doppler shift. Our delay Doppler image has a high dynamic range and displays some pronounced, low-level power concentrations at large delays. These concentrations imply strong clumpiness in the ionized ISM, on AU-size scales, which must adversely affect the timing of B1937+21.

  15. Cool white dwarf companions to four millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bassa, C. G.; Antoniadis, J.; Camilo, F.; Cognard, I.; Koester, D.; Kramer, M.; Ransom, S. R.; Stappers, B. W.

    2016-02-01

    We report on photometric and spectroscopic observations of white dwarf companions to four binary radio millisecond pulsars, leading to the discovery of companions to PSRs J0614-3329, J1231-1411 and J2017+0603. We place limits on the brightness of the companion to PSR J0613-0200. Optical spectroscopy of the companion to PSR J0614-3329 identifies it as a DA-type white dwarf with a temperature of Teff = 6460 ± 80 K, a surface gravity log g = 7.0 ± 0.2 cgs and a mass of MWD = 0.24 ± 0.04 M⊙. We find that the distance to PSR J0614-3329 is smaller than previously estimated, removing the need for the pulsar to have an unrealistically high γ-ray efficiency. Comparing the photometry with predictions from white dwarf cooling models allows us to estimate temperatures and cooling ages of the companions to PSRs J0613-0200, J1231-1411 and J2017+0603. We find that the white dwarfs in these systems are cool Teff < 4000 K and old ≳ 5 Gyr. Thin hydrogen envelopes are required for these white dwarfs to cool to the observed temperatures, and we suggest that besides hydrogen shell flashes, irradiation driven mass loss by the pulsar may have been important.

  16. ASSESSING THE ROLE OF SPIN NOISE IN THE PRECISION TIMING OF MILLISECOND PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Shannon, Ryan M.; Cordes, James M. E-mail: cordes@astro.cornell.ed

    2010-12-20

    We investigate rotational spin noise (referred to as timing noise) in non-accreting pulsars: millisecond pulsars, canonical pulsars, and magnetars. Particular attention is placed on quantifying the strength and non-stationarity of timing noise in millisecond pulsars because the long-term stability of these objects is required to detect nanohertz gravitational radiation. We show that a single scaling law is sufficient to characterize timing noise in millisecond and canonical pulsars while the same scaling law underestimates the levels of timing noise in magnetars. The scaling law, along with a detailed study of the millisecond pulsar B1937+21, leads us to conclude that timing noise is latent in most millisecond pulsars and will be measurable in many objects when better arrival time estimates are obtained over long data spans. The sensitivity of a pulsar timing array to gravitational radiation is strongly affected by any timing noise. We conclude that detection of proposed gravitational wave backgrounds will require the analysis of more objects than previously suggested over data spans that depend on the spectra of both the gravitational wave background and of the timing noise. It is imperative to find additional millisecond pulsars in current and future surveys in order to reduce the effects of timing noise.

  17. X-ray flares from postmerger millisecond pulsars.

    PubMed

    Dai, Z G; Wang, X Y; Wu, X F; Zhang, B

    2006-02-24

    Recent observations support the suggestion that short-duration gamma-ray bursts are produced by compact star mergers. The x-ray flares discovered in two short gamma-ray bursts last much longer than the previously proposed postmerger energy-release time scales. Here, we show that they can be produced by differentially rotating, millisecond pulsars after the mergers of binary neutron stars. The differential rotation leads to windup of interior poloidal magnetic fields and the resulting toroidal fields are strong enough to float up and break through the stellar surface. Magnetic reconnection-driven explosive events then occur, leading to multiple x-ray flares minutes after the original gamma-ray burst. PMID:16497927

  18. The orbital eccentricities of binary millisecond pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rasio, Frederic A.; Heggie, Douglas C.

    1995-01-01

    Low-mass binary millisecond pulsars (LMBPs) are born with very small orbital eccentricities, typically of order e(sub i) approximately 10(exp -6) to 10(exp -3). In globular clusters, however, higher eccentricities e(sub f) much greater than e(sub i) can be induced by dynamical interactions with passing stars. Here we show that the cross section for this process is much larger than previously estimated. This is becuse, even for initially circular binaries, the induced eccentricity e(sub f) for an encounter with pericenter separation r(sub p) beyond a few times the binary semimajor axis a declines only as a power law (e(sub f) varies as (r(sub p)/a)(exp -5/2), and not as an exponential. We find that all currently known LMBPs in clusters were probably affected by interactions, with their current eccentricities typically greater than at birth by an order of magnitude or more.

  19. Millisecond newly born pulsars as efficient accelerators of electrons.

    PubMed

    Osmanov, Zaza; Mahajan, Swadesh; Machabeli, George; Chkheidze, Nino

    2015-01-01

    The newly born millisecond pulsars are investigated as possible energy sources for creating ultra-high energy electrons. The transfer of energy from the star rotation to high energy electrons takes place through the Landau damping of centrifugally driven (via a two stream instability) electrostatic Langmuir waves. Generated in the bulk magnetosphere plasma, such waves grow to high amplitudes, and then damp, very effectively, on relativistic electrons driving them to even higher energies. We show that the rate of transfer of energy is so efficient that no energy losses might affect the mechanism of particle acceleration; the electrons might achieve energies of the order of 10(18) eV for parameters characteristic of a young star. PMID:26403155

  20. Millisecond newly born pulsars as efficient accelerators of electrons

    PubMed Central

    Osmanov, Zaza; Mahajan, Swadesh; Machabeli, George; Chkheidze, Nino

    2015-01-01

    The newly born millisecond pulsars are investigated as possible energy sources for creating ultra-high energy electrons. The transfer of energy from the star rotation to high energy electrons takes place through the Landau damping of centrifugally driven (via a two stream instability) electrostatic Langmuir waves. Generated in the bulk magnetosphere plasma, such waves grow to high amplitudes, and then damp, very effectively, on relativistic electrons driving them to even higher energies. We show that the rate of transfer of energy is so efficient that no energy losses might affect the mechanism of particle acceleration; the electrons might achieve energies of the order of 1018 eV for parameters characteristic of a young star. PMID:26403155

  1. Six millisecond pulsars detected by the Fermi Large Area Telescope and the radio/gamma-ray connection of millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Espinoza, C. M.; Guillemot, L.; Çelik, Ö.; Weltevrede, P.; Stappers, B. W.; Smith, D. A.; Kerr, M.; Zavlin, V. E.; Cognard, I.; Eatough, R. P.; Freire, P. C. C.; Janssen, G. H.; Camilo, F.; Desvignes, G.; Hewitt, J. W.; Hou, X.; Johnston, S.; Keith, M.; Kramer, M.; Lyne, A.; Manchester, R. N.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Shannon, R.; Theureau, G.; Webb, N.

    2013-03-01

    We report on the discovery of gamma-ray pulsations from five millisecond pulsars (MSPs) using the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) and timing ephemerides provided by various radio observatories. We also present confirmation of the gamma-ray pulsations from a sixth source, PSR J2051-0827. Five of these six MSPs are in binary systems: PSRs J1713+0747, J1741+1351, J1600-3053 and the two black widow binary pulsars PSRs J0610-2100 and J2051-0827. The only isolated MSP is the nearby PSR J1024-0719, which is also known to emit X-rays. We present X-ray observations in the direction of PSRs J1600-3053 and J2051-0827. While PSR J2051-0827 is firmly detected, we can only give upper limits for the X-ray flux of PSR J1600-3053. There are no dedicated X-ray observations available for the other three objects. The MSPs mentioned above, together with most of the MSPs detected by Fermi, are used to put together a sample of 30 gamma-ray MSPs. This sample is used to study the morphology and phase connection of radio and gamma-ray pulse profiles. We show that MSPs with pulsed gamma-ray emission which is phase-aligned with the radio emission present the steepest radio spectra and the largest magnetic fields at the light cylinder among all MSPs. Also, we observe a trend towards very low, or undetectable, radio linear polarization levels. These properties could be attributed to caustic radio emission produced at a range of different altitudes in the magnetosphere. We note that most of these characteristics are also observed in the Crab pulsar, the only other radio pulsar known to exhibit phase-aligned radio and gamma-ray emission.

  2. What is causing the eclipse in the millisecond binary pulsar

    SciTech Connect

    Rasio, F.A.; Shapiro, S.L.; Teukolsky, S.A. )

    1989-07-01

    Possible physical mechanisms for explaining the radio eclipses in the millisecond binary pulsar PSR 1957 + 20 are discussed. If, as recent observations suggest, the duration of the eclipses depends on the observing frequency, a plausible mechanism is free-free absorption of the radio pulses by a low-density ionized wind surrounding the companion. Detailed numerical calculations are performed for this case, and it is found that all of the observations made at 430 MHz can be reliably reproduced, including the asymmetry in the excess time delay of the pulses. The model leads to definite predictions for the duration of the eclipse at other observing frequencies, as well as the radio intensity and excess time delay of the pulses as a function of orbital phase. If the duration of the eclipses were found to be independent of frequency, then the likely mechanism would be reflection of the radio signal at a contact discontinuity between a high-density wind and the pulsar radiation. In this case, however, it is difficult to explain the observed symmetry of the eclipse. 12 refs.

  3. Timing analysis for 20 millisecond pulsars in the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reardon, D. J.; Hobbs, G.; Coles, W.; Levin, Y.; Keith, M. J.; Bailes, M.; Bhat, N. D. R.; Burke-Spolaor, S.; Dai, S.; Kerr, M.; Lasky, P. D.; Manchester, R. N.; Osłowski, S.; Ravi, V.; Shannon, R. M.; van Straten, W.; Toomey, L.; Wang, J.; Wen, L.; You, X. P.; Zhu, X.-J.

    2016-01-01

    We present timing models for 20 millisecond pulsars in the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array. The precision of the parameter measurements in these models has been improved over earlier results by using longer data sets and modelling the non-stationary noise. We describe a new noise modelling procedure and demonstrate its effectiveness using simulated data. Our methodology includes the addition of annual dispersion measure (DM) variations to the timing models of some pulsars. We present the first significant parallax measurements for PSRs J1024-0719, J1045-4509, J1600-3053, J1603-7202, and J1730-2304, as well as the first significant measurements of some post-Keplerian orbital parameters in six binary pulsars, caused by kinematic effects. Improved Shapiro delay measurements have resulted in much improved pulsar mass measurements, particularly for PSRs J0437-4715 and J1909-3744 with Mp = 1.44 ± 0.07 and 1.47 ± 0.03 M⊙, respectively. The improved orbital period-derivative measurement for PSR J0437-4715 results in a derived distance measurement at the 0.16 per cent level of precision, D = 156.79 ± 0.25 pc, one of the most fractionally precise distance measurements of any star to date.

  4. MILLISECOND PULSAR SCINTILLATION STUDIES WITH LOFAR: INITIAL RESULTS

    SciTech Connect

    Archibald, Anne M.; Kondratiev, Vladislav I.; Hessels, Jason W. T.; Stinebring, Daniel R. E-mail: kondratiev@astron.nl E-mail: dan.stinebring@oberlin.edu

    2014-08-01

    High-precision timing of millisecond pulsars (MSPs) over years to decades is a promising technique for direct detection of gravitational waves at nanohertz frequencies. Time-variable, multi-path scattering in the interstellar medium is a significant source of noise for this detector, particularly as timing precision approaches 10 ns or better for MSPs in the pulsar timing array. For many MSPs, the scattering delay above 1 GHz is at the limit of detectability; therefore, we study it at lower frequencies. Using the LOw-Frequency ARray (LOFAR) radio telescope, we have analyzed short (5-20 minutes) observations of 3 MSPs in order to estimate the scattering delay at 110-190 MHz, where the number of scintles is large and, hence, the statistical uncertainty in the scattering delay is small. We used cyclic spectroscopy, still relatively novel in radio astronomy, on baseband-sampled data to achieve unprecedented frequency resolution while retaining adequate pulse-phase resolution. We detected scintillation structure in the spectra of the MSPs PSR B1257+12, PSR J1810+1744, and PSR J2317+1439 with diffractive bandwidths of 6 ± 3, 2.0 ± 0.3, and ∼7 kHz, respectively, where the estimate for PSR J2317+1439 is reliable to about a factor of two. For the brightest of the three pulsars, PSR J1810+1744, we found that the diffractive bandwidth has a power-law behavior Δν{sub d}∝ν{sup α}, where ν is the observing frequency and α = 4.5 ± 0.5, consistent with a Kolmogorov inhomogeneity spectrum. We conclude that this technique holds promise for monitoring the scattering delay of MSPs with LOFAR and other high-sensitivity, low-frequency arrays like the low-frequency component of the Square Kilometre Array.

  5. Microarcsecond VLBI Pulsar Astrometry with PSRπ. I. Two Binary Millisecond Pulsars with White Dwarf Companions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deller, A. T.; Vigeland, S. J.; Kaplan, D. L.; Goss, W. M.; Brisken, W. F.; Chatterjee, S.; Cordes, J. M.; Janssen, G. H.; Lazio, T. J. W.; Petrov, L.; Stappers, B. W.; Lyne, A.

    2016-09-01

    Model-independent distance constraints to binary millisecond pulsars (MSPs) are of great value to both the timing observations of the radio pulsars and multiwavelength observations of their companion stars. Astrometry using very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) can be employed to provide these model-independent distances with very high precision via the detection of annual geometric parallax. Using the Very Long Baseline Array, we have observed two binary MSPs, PSR J1022+1001 and J2145–0750, over a two-year period and measured their distances to be {700}-10+14 pc and {613}-14+16 pc respectively. We use the well-calibrated distance in conjunction with revised analysis of optical photometry to tightly constrain the nature of their massive (M˜ 0.85 {M}ȯ ) white dwarf companions. Finally, we show that several measurements of the parallax and proper motion of PSR J1022+1001 and PSR J2145–0750 obtained by pulsar timing array projects are incorrect, differing from the more precise VLBI values by up to 5σ. We investigate possible causes for the discrepancy, and find that imperfect modeling of the solar wind is a likely candidate for the errors in the timing model given the low ecliptic latitude of these two pulsars.

  6. Microarcsecond VLBI Pulsar Astrometry with PSRπ. I. Two Binary Millisecond Pulsars with White Dwarf Companions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deller, A. T.; Vigeland, S. J.; Kaplan, D. L.; Goss, W. M.; Brisken, W. F.; Chatterjee, S.; Cordes, J. M.; Janssen, G. H.; Lazio, T. J. W.; Petrov, L.; Stappers, B. W.; Lyne, A.

    2016-09-01

    Model-independent distance constraints to binary millisecond pulsars (MSPs) are of great value to both the timing observations of the radio pulsars and multiwavelength observations of their companion stars. Astrometry using very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) can be employed to provide these model-independent distances with very high precision via the detection of annual geometric parallax. Using the Very Long Baseline Array, we have observed two binary MSPs, PSR J1022+1001 and J2145–0750, over a two-year period and measured their distances to be {700}-10+14 pc and {613}-14+16 pc respectively. We use the well-calibrated distance in conjunction with revised analysis of optical photometry to tightly constrain the nature of their massive (M∼ 0.85 {M}ȯ ) white dwarf companions. Finally, we show that several measurements of the parallax and proper motion of PSR J1022+1001 and PSR J2145–0750 obtained by pulsar timing array projects are incorrect, differing from the more precise VLBI values by up to 5σ. We investigate possible causes for the discrepancy, and find that imperfect modeling of the solar wind is a likely candidate for the errors in the timing model given the low ecliptic latitude of these two pulsars.

  7. Search for Gamma-Ray Millisecond Pulsars with the Fermi LAT

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.

    2009-01-01

    Prior to the launch of Fermi, only weak gamma-ray pulsations from a single millisecond pulsar, PSR J0218+4232, had been reported. A firm detection of gamma rays from a member of this class of pulsar having periods near neutron star break-up and magnetic dipole moments well below those of normal pulsars would provide new insights into pulsar acceleration and emission. Using accurate ephemerides obtained from several radio telescopes as well as the unprecedented accuracy of the GPS-derived clocks used by Fermi and the LAT, we have searched for gamma-ray pulsations from known pulsars over a broad range of timing parameters. We will present some results from our search for pulsed gamma rays from millisecond pulsars.

  8. Where do the progenitors of millisecond pulsars come from?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taani, A.; Zhang, C. M.; Al-Wardat, M.; Zhao, Y. H.

    2012-01-01

    Observations of a large population of millisecond pulsars (MSPs) show a wide divergence in the orbital periods (from approximately hours to a few months). In the standard view, low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs) are considered as progenitors for some MSPs during the recycling process. We present a systematic study that combines different types of compact objects in binaries such as cataclysmic variables (CVs), LMXBs, and MSPs. We plot them together in the so called Corbet diagram. Larger and different samples are needed to better constrain the result as a function of the environment and formations. A scale diagram showing the distribution of MSPs for different orbital periods and the aspects for their progenitors relying on accretion induced collapse (AIC) of white dwarfs in binaries. Thus massive CVs (M ≥ 1.1 M⊙) can play a vital role on binary evolution, as well as of the physical processes involved in the formation and evolution of neutron stars and their magnetic fields, and could turn into binary MSPs with different scales of orbital periods; this effect can be explained by the AIC process. This scenario also suggests that some fraction of isolated MSPs in the Galactic disk could be formed through the same channel, forming the contribution of some CVs to the single-degenerate progenitors of Type Ia supernova. Furthermore, we have refined the statistical distribution and evolution by using updated data. This implies that the significant studies of compact objects in binary systems can benefit from the Corbet diagram.

  9. DYNAMICAL FORMATION OF MILLISECOND PULSARS IN GLOBULAR CLUSTERS

    SciTech Connect

    Hui, C. Y.; Cheng, K. S.; Taam, Ronald E.

    2010-05-10

    The cumulative luminosity distribution functions (CLFs) of radio millisecond pulsars (MSPs) in globular clusters (GCs) and in the Galactic field at a frequency of 1.4 GHz have been examined. Assuming a functional form, N {proportional_to} L{sup q} where N is the number of MSPs and L is the luminosity at 1.4 GHz, it is found that the CLFs significantly differ with a steeper slope, q = -0.83 {+-} 0.05, in GCs than in the Galactic field (q = -0.48 {+-} 0.04), suggesting a different formation or evolutionary history of MSPs in these two regions of the Galaxy. To probe the production mechanism of MSPs in clusters, a search of the possible relationships between the MSP population and cluster properties was carried out. The results of an investigation of nine GCs indicate positive correlations between the MSP population and the stellar encounter rate and metallicity. This provides additional evidence suggesting that stellar dynamical interactions are important in the formation of the MSP population in GCs.

  10. Identification of candidate millisecond pulsars from Fermi LAT observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dai, Xue-Jie; Wang, Zhong-Xiang; Vadakkumthani, Jithesh; Xing, Yi

    2016-06-01

    We report our detailed data analysis of 39 γ-ray sources selected from the 992 unassociated sources in the third Fermi Large Area Telescope Third Source Catalog. The selection criteria, which were set for finding candidate millisecond pulsars (MSPs), are non-variables with curved spectra and >5° Galactic latitudes. From our analysis, 24 sources were found to be point-like sources not contaminated by background or nearby unknown sources. Three of them, J1544.6–1125, J1625.1–0021 and J1653.6–0158, have been previously studied, indicating that they are likely MSPs. The spectra of J0318.1+0252 and J2053.9+2922 do not have properties similar to known γ-ray MSPs, and we thus suggest that they are not MSPs. Analysis of archival X-ray data for most of the 24 sources was also conducted. Four sources were found with X-ray objects in their error circles, and 16 with no detection. The ratios between the γ-ray fluxes and X-ray fluxes or flux upper limits are generally lower than those of known γ-ray MSPs, suggesting that if the γ-ray sources are MSPs, none of the X-ray objects are their counterparts. Deep X-ray or radio observations of these sources are needed in order to identify their MSP nature.

  11. Swings between rotation and accretion power in a binary millisecond pulsar.

    PubMed

    Papitto, A; Ferrigno, C; Bozzo, E; Rea, N; Pavan, L; Burderi, L; Burgay, M; Campana, S; Di Salvo, T; Falanga, M; Filipović, M D; Freire, P C C; Hessels, J W T; Possenti, A; Ransom, S M; Riggio, A; Romano, P; Sarkissian, J M; Stairs, I H; Stella, L; Torres, D F; Wieringa, M H; Wong, G F

    2013-09-26

    It is thought that neutron stars in low-mass binary systems can accrete matter and angular momentum from the companion star and be spun-up to millisecond rotational periods. During the accretion stage, the system is called a low-mass X-ray binary, and bright X-ray emission is observed. When the rate of mass transfer decreases in the later evolutionary stages, these binaries host a radio millisecond pulsar whose emission is powered by the neutron star's rotating magnetic field. This evolutionary model is supported by the detection of millisecond X-ray pulsations from several accreting neutron stars and also by the evidence for a past accretion disc in a rotation-powered millisecond pulsar. It has been proposed that a rotation-powered pulsar may temporarily switch on during periods of low mass inflow in some such systems. Only indirect evidence for this transition has hitherto been observed. Here we report observations of accretion-powered, millisecond X-ray pulsations from a neutron star previously seen as a rotation-powered radio pulsar. Within a few days after a month-long X-ray outburst, radio pulses were again detected. This not only shows the evolutionary link between accretion and rotation-powered millisecond pulsars, but also that some systems can swing between the two states on very short timescales. PMID:24067710

  12. Observations and modeling of the companions of short period binary millisecond pulsars: evidence for high-mass neutron stars

    SciTech Connect

    Schroeder, Joshua; Halpern, Jules

    2014-10-01

    We present observations of fields containing eight recently discovered binary millisecond pulsars using the telescopes at MDM Observatory. Optical counterparts to four of these systems are detected, one of which, PSR J2214+3000, is a novel detection. Additionally, we present the fully phase-resolved B, V, and R light curves of the optical counterparts to two objects, PSR J1810+1744 and PSR J2215+5135 for which we employ model fitting using the eclipsing light curve (ELC) model of Orosz and Hauschildt to measure the unknown system parameters. For PSR J1810+1744, we find that the system parameters cannot be fit even assuming that 100% of the spin-down luminosity of the pulsar is irradiating the secondary, and so radial velocity measurements of this object will be required for the complete solution. However, PSR J2215+5135 exhibits light curves that are extremely well constrained using the ELC model and we find that the mass of the neutron star is constrained by these and the radio observations to be M {sub NS} > 1.75 M {sub ☉} at the 3σ level. We also find a discrepancy between the model temperature and the measured colors of this object, which we interpret as possible evidence for an additional high-temperature source such as a quiescent disk. Given this and the fact that PSR J2215+5135 contains a relatively high mass companion (M {sub c} > 0.1 M {sub ☉}), we propose that similar to the binary pulsar systems PSR J1023+0038 and IGR J18245–2452, the pulsar may transition between accretion- and rotation-powered modes.

  13. Progenitor neutron stars of the lightest and heaviest millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fortin, M.; Bejger, M.; Haensel, P.; Zdunik, J. L.

    2016-02-01

    Context. The recent mass measurements of two binary millisecond pulsars, PSR J1614-2230 and PSR J0751+1807 with a mass M = 1.97 ± 0.04 M⊙ and M = 1.26 ± 0.14 M⊙, respectively, indicate a wide range of masses for such objects and possibly also a broad spectrum of masses of neutron stars born in core-collapse supernovae. Aims: Starting from the zero-age main sequence binary stage, we aim at inferring the birth masses of PSR J1614-2230 and PSR J0751+1807 by taking the differences in the evolutionary stages preceding their formation into account. Methods: Using simulations for the evolution of binary stars, we reconstruct the evolutionary tracks leading to the formation of PSR J1614-2230 and PSR J0751+1807. We analyse in detail the spin evolution due to the accretion of matter from a disk in the intermediate-mass/low-mass X-ray binary. We consider two equations of state of dense matter, one for purely nucleonic matter and the other one including a high-density softening due to the appearance of hyperons. Stationary and axisymmetric stellar configurations in general relativity are used, together with a recent magnetic torque model and observationally-motivated laws for the decay of magnetic field. Results: The estimated birth mass of the neutron stars PSR J0751+1807 and PSR J1614-2230 could be as low as 1.0 M⊙ and as high as 1.9 M⊙, respectively. These values depend weakly on the equation of state and the assumed model for the magnetic field and its accretion-induced decay. Conclusions: The masses of progenitor neutron stars of recycled pulsars span a broad interval from 1.0 M⊙ to 1.9 M⊙. Including the effect of a slow Roche-lobe detachment phase, which could be relevant for PSR J0751+1807, would make the lower mass limit even lower. A realistic theory for core-collapse supernovæ should account for this wide range of mass.

  14. High-precision timing of 42 millisecond pulsars with the European Pulsar Timing Array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Desvignes, G.; Caballero, R. N.; Lentati, L.; Verbiest, J. P. W.; Champion, D. J.; Stappers, B. W.; Janssen, G. H.; Lazarus, P.; Osłowski, S.; Babak, S.; Bassa, C. G.; Brem, P.; Burgay, M.; Cognard, I.; Gair, J. R.; Graikou, E.; Guillemot, L.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Jessner, A.; Jordan, C.; Karuppusamy, R.; Kramer, M.; Lassus, A.; Lazaridis, K.; Lee, K. J.; Liu, K.; Lyne, A. G.; McKee, J.; Mingarelli, C. M. F.; Perrodin, D.; Petiteau, A.; Possenti, A.; Purver, M. B.; Rosado, P. A.; Sanidas, S.; Sesana, A.; Shaifullah, G.; Smits, R.; Taylor, S. R.; Theureau, G.; Tiburzi, C.; van Haasteren, R.; Vecchio, A.

    2016-05-01

    We report on the high-precision timing of 42 radio millisecond pulsars (MSPs) observed by the European Pulsar Timing Array (EPTA). This EPTA Data Release 1.0 extends up to mid-2014 and baselines range from 7-18 yr. It forms the basis for the stochastic gravitational-wave background, anisotropic background, and continuous-wave limits recently presented by the EPTA elsewhere. The Bayesian timing analysis performed with TEMPONEST yields the detection of several new parameters: seven parallaxes, nine proper motions and, in the case of six binary pulsars, an apparent change of the semimajor axis. We find the NE2001 Galactic electron density model to be a better match to our parallax distances (after correction from the Lutz-Kelker bias) than the M2 and M3 models by Schnitzeler. However, we measure an average uncertainty of 80 per cent (fractional) for NE2001, three times larger than what is typically assumed in the literature. We revisit the transverse velocity distribution for a set of 19 isolated and 57 binary MSPs and find no statistical difference between these two populations. We detect Shapiro delay in the timing residuals of PSRs J1600-3053 and J1918-0642, implying pulsar and companion masses m_p=1.22_{-0.35}^{+0.5} M_{⊙}, m_c = 0.21_{-0.04}^{+0.06} M_{⊙} and m_p=1.25_{-0.4}^{+0.6} M_{⊙}, m_c = 0.23_{-0.05}^{+0.07} M_{⊙}, respectively. Finally, we use the measurement of the orbital period derivative to set a stringent constraint on the distance to PSRs J1012+5307 and J1909-3744, and set limits on the longitude of ascending node through the search of the annual-orbital parallax for PSRs J1600-3053 and J1909-3744.

  15. Discovery of the optical counterparts to four energetic Fermi millisecond pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Breton, R. P.; Van Kerkwijk, M. H.; Roberts, M. S. E.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Camilo, F.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Stairs, I. H.

    2013-06-01

    In the last few years, over 43 millisecond radio pulsars have been discovered by targeted searches of unidentified γ-ray sources found by the Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope. A large fraction of these millisecond pulsars are in compact binaries with low-mass companions. These systems often show eclipses of the pulsar signal and are commonly known as black widows and redbacks because the pulsar is gradually destroying its companion. In this paper, we report on the optical discovery of four strongly irradiated millisecond pulsar companions. All four sources show modulations of their color and luminosity at the known orbital periods from radio timing. Light curve modeling of our exploratory data shows that the equilibrium temperature reached on the companion's dayside with respect to their nightside is consistent with about 10%-30% of the available spin-down energy from the pulsar being reprocessed to increase the companion's dayside temperature. This value compares well with the range observed in other irradiated pulsar binaries and offers insights about the energetics of the pulsar wind and the production of γ-ray emission. In addition, this provides a simple way of estimating the brightness of irradiated pulsar companions given the pulsar spin-down luminosity. Our analysis also suggests that two of the four new irradiated pulsar companions are only partially filling their Roche lobe. Some of these sources are relatively bright and represent good targets for spectroscopic follow-up. These measurements could enable, among other things, mass determination of the neutron stars in these systems.

  16. Discovery of the Optical Counterparts to Four Energetic Fermi Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Breton, R. P.; van Kerkwijk, M. H.; Roberts, M. S. E.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Camilo, F.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Stairs, I. H.

    2013-06-01

    In the last few years, over 43 millisecond radio pulsars have been discovered by targeted searches of unidentified γ-ray sources found by the Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope. A large fraction of these millisecond pulsars are in compact binaries with low-mass companions. These systems often show eclipses of the pulsar signal and are commonly known as black widows and redbacks because the pulsar is gradually destroying its companion. In this paper, we report on the optical discovery of four strongly irradiated millisecond pulsar companions. All four sources show modulations of their color and luminosity at the known orbital periods from radio timing. Light curve modeling of our exploratory data shows that the equilibrium temperature reached on the companion's dayside with respect to their nightside is consistent with about 10%-30% of the available spin-down energy from the pulsar being reprocessed to increase the companion's dayside temperature. This value compares well with the range observed in other irradiated pulsar binaries and offers insights about the energetics of the pulsar wind and the production of γ-ray emission. In addition, this provides a simple way of estimating the brightness of irradiated pulsar companions given the pulsar spin-down luminosity. Our analysis also suggests that two of the four new irradiated pulsar companions are only partially filling their Roche lobe. Some of these sources are relatively bright and represent good targets for spectroscopic follow-up. These measurements could enable, among other things, mass determination of the neutron stars in these systems.

  17. Prospects for neutron star equation of state constraints using "recycled" millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanov, Slavko

    2016-02-01

    "Recycled" millisecond pulsars are a variety of rapidly spinning neutron stars that typically show thermal X-ray radiation due to the heated surface of their magnetic polar caps. Detailed numerical modeling of the rotation-induced thermal X-ray pulsations observed from recycled millisecond pulsars, including all relevant relativistic and stellar atmospheric effects, has been identified as a promising approach towards an astrophysical determination of the true neutron star mass-radius relation, and by extension the state of cold matter at densities exceeding those of atomic nuclei. Herein, I review the basic model and methodology commonly used to extract information regarding neutron star structure from the pulsed X-ray radiation observed from millisecond pulsars. I also summarize the results of past X-ray observations of these objects and the prospects for precision neutron star mass-radius measurements with the upcoming Neutron Star Interior Composition Explorer (NICER) X-ray timing mission.

  18. A population of gamma-ray millisecond pulsars seen with the Fermi Large Area Telescope.

    PubMed

    Abdo, A A; Ackermann, M; Ajello, M; Atwood, W B; Axelsson, M; Baldini, L; Ballet, J; Barbiellini, G; Baring, M G; Bastieri, D; Baughman, B M; Bechtol, K; Bellazzini, R; Berenji, B; Bignami, G F; Blandford, R D; Bloom, E D; Bonamente, E; Borgland, A W; Bregeon, J; Brez, A; Brigida, M; Bruel, P; Burnett, T H; Caliandro, G A; Cameron, R A; Camilo, F; Caraveo, P A; Carlson, P; Casandjian, J M; Cecchi, C; Celik, O; Charles, E; Chekhtman, A; Cheung, C C; Chiang, J; Ciprini, S; Claus, R; Cognard, I; Cohen-Tanugi, J; Cominsky, L R; Conrad, J; Corbet, R; Cutini, S; Dermer, C D; Desvignes, G; de Angelis, A; de Luca, A; de Palma, F; Digel, S W; Dormody, M; do Couto e Silva, E; Drell, P S; Dubois, R; Dumora, D; Edmonds, Y; Farnier, C; Favuzzi, C; Fegan, S J; Focke, W B; Frailis, M; Freire, P C C; Fukazawa, Y; Funk, S; Fusco, P; Gargano, F; Gasparrini, D; Gehrels, N; Germani, S; Giebels, B; Giglietto, N; Giordano, F; Glanzman, T; Godfrey, G; Grenier, I A; Grondin, M H; Grove, J E; Guillemot, L; Guiriec, S; Hanabata, Y; Harding, A K; Hayashida, M; Hays, E; Hobbs, G; Hughes, R E; Jóhannesson, G; Johnson, A S; Johnson, R P; Johnson, T J; Johnson, W N; Johnston, S; Kamae, T; Katagiri, H; Kataoka, J; Kawai, N; Kerr, M; Knödlseder, J; Kocian, M L; Kramer, M; Kuss, M; Lande, J; Latronico, L; Lemoine-Goumard, M; Longo, F; Loparco, F; Lott, B; Lovellette, M N; Lubrano, P; Madejski, G M; Makeev, A; Manchester, R N; Marelli, M; Mazziotta, M N; McConville, W; McEnery, J E; McLaughlin, M A; Meurer, C; Michelson, P F; Mitthumsiri, W; Mizuno, T; Moiseev, A A; Monte, C; Monzani, M E; Morselli, A; Moskalenko, I V; Murgia, S; Nolan, P L; Norris, J P; Nuss, E; Ohsugi, T; Omodei, N; Orlando, E; Ormes, J F; Paneque, D; Panetta, J H; Parent, D; Pelassa, V; Pepe, M; Pesce-Rollins, M; Piron, F; Porter, T A; Rainò, S; Rando, R; Ransom, S M; Ray, P S; Razzano, M; Rea, N; Reimer, A; Reimer, O; Reposeur, T; Ritz, S; Rochester, L S; Rodriguez, A Y; Romani, R W; Roth, M; Ryde, F; Sadrozinski, H F W; Sanchez, D; Sander, A; Saz Parkinson, P M; Scargle, J D; Schalk, T L; Sgrò, C; Siskind, E J; Smith, D A; Smith, P D; Spandre, G; Spinelli, P; Stappers, B W; Starck, J L; Striani, E; Strickman, M S; Suson, D J; Tajima, H; Takahashi, H; Tanaka, T; Thayer, J B; Thayer, J G; Theureau, G; Thompson, D J; Thorsett, S E; Tibaldo, L; Torres, D F; Tosti, G; Tramacere, A; Uchiyama, Y; Usher, T L; Van Etten, A; Vasileiou, V; Venter, C; Vilchez, N; Vitale, V; Waite, A P; Wallace, E; Wang, P; Watters, K; Webb, N; Weltevrede, P; Winer, B L; Wood, K S; Ylinen, T; Ziegler, M

    2009-08-14

    Pulsars are born with subsecond spin periods and slow by electromagnetic braking for several tens of millions of years, when detectable radiation ceases. A second life can occur for neutron stars in binary systems. They can acquire mass and angular momentum from their companions, to be spun up to millisecond periods and begin radiating again. We searched Fermi Large Area Telescope data for pulsations from all known millisecond pulsars (MSPs) outside of globular clusters, using rotation parameters from radio telescopes. Strong gamma-ray pulsations were detected for eight MSPs. The gamma-ray pulse profiles and spectral properties resemble those of young gamma-ray pulsars. The basic emission mechanism seems to be the same for MSPs and young pulsars, with the emission originating in regions far from the neutron star surface. PMID:19574349

  19. DETECTION AND FLUX DENSITY MEASUREMENTS OF THE MILLISECOND PULSAR J2145–0750 BELOW 100 MHz

    SciTech Connect

    Dowell, J.; Taylor, G. B.; Craig, J.; Henning, P. A.; Schinzel, F.; Ray, P. S.; Blythe, J. N.; Clarke, T.; Helmboldt, J. F.; Ellingson, S. W.; Wolfe, C. N.; Lazio, T. J. W.; Stovall, K.

    2013-09-20

    We present flux density measurements and pulse profiles for the millisecond pulsar PSR J2145–0750 spanning 37 to 81 MHz using data obtained from the first station of the Long Wavelength Array. These measurements represent the lowest frequency detection of pulsed emission from a millisecond pulsar to date. We find that the pulse profile is similar to that observed at 102 MHz. We also find that the flux density spectrum between ≈40 MHz to 5 GHz is suggestive of a break and may be better fit by a model that includes spectral curvature with a rollover around 730 MHz rather than a single power law.

  20. Neutron stars and millisecond pulsars from accretion-induced collapse in globular clusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bailyn, Charles D.; Grindlay, Jonathan E.

    1990-01-01

    This paper examines the limits on the number of millisecond pulsars which could be formed in globular clusters by the generally accepted scenario (in which a neutron star is created by the supernova of an initially massive star and subsequently captures a companion to form a low-mass X-ray binary which eventually becomes a millisecond pulsar). It is found that, while the number of observed low-mass X-ray binaries can be adequately explained in this way, the reasonable assumption that the pulsar luminosity function in clusters extends below the current observational limits down to the luminosity of the faintest millisecond pulsars in the field suggests a cluster population of millisecond pulsars which is substantially larger than the standard model can produce. Alleviating this problem by postulating much shorter lifetimes for the X-ray binaries requires massive star populations sufficiently large that the mass loss resulting from their evolution would be likely to unbind the cluster. It is argued that neutron star formation in globular clusters by accretion-induced collapse of white dwarfs may resolve the discrepancy in birthrates.

  1. Rotochemical heating of millisecond and classical pulsars with anisotropic and density-dependent superfluid gap models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    González-Jiménez, Nicolás; Petrovich, Cristobal; Reisenegger, Andreas

    2015-03-01

    When a rotating neutron star loses angular momentum, the progressive reduction of the centrifugal force makes it contract. This perturbs each fluid element, raising the local pressure and originating deviations from beta equilibrium, inducing reactions that release heat (`rotochemical heating'). This effect has previously been studied by Fernández & Reisenegger for non-superfluid neutron stars and by Petrovich & Reisenegger for superfluid millisecond pulsars. Both studies found that pulsars reach a quasi-steady state in which the compression driving the matter out of beta equilibrium is balanced by the reactions trying to restore the equilibrium. We extend previous studies by considering the effect of density-dependence and anisotropy of the superfluid energy gaps, for the case in which the dominant reactions are the modified Urca processes, the protons are non-superconducting, and the neutron superfluidity is parametrized by models proposed in the literature. By comparing our predictions with the surface temperature of the millisecond pulsar PSR J0437-4715 and upper limits for 21 classical pulsars, we find the millisecond pulsar can be only explained by the models with the effectively largest energy gaps (type B models), the classical pulsars require with the gap models that vanish for some angle (type C) and two different envelope compositions. Thus, no single model for neutron superfluidity can simultaneously account for the thermal emission of all available observations of non-accreting neutron stars, possibly due to our neglect of proton superconductivity.

  2. What the Timing of Millisecond Pulsars Can Teach us about Their Interior

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alford, Mark G.; Schwenzer, Kai

    2014-12-01

    The cores of compact stars reach the highest densities in nature and therefore could consist of novel phases of matter. We demonstrate via a detailed analysis of pulsar evolution that precise pulsar timing data can constrain the star's composition, through unstable global oscillations (r modes) whose damping is determined by microscopic properties of the interior. If not efficiently damped, these modes emit gravitational waves that quickly spin down a millisecond pulsar. As a first application of this general method, we find that ungapped interacting quark matter is consistent with both the observed radio and x-ray data, whereas for ordinary nuclear matter some additional enhanced damping mechanism is required.

  3. What the timing of millisecond pulsars can teach us about their interior.

    PubMed

    Alford, Mark G; Schwenzer, Kai

    2014-12-19

    The cores of compact stars reach the highest densities in nature and therefore could consist of novel phases of matter. We demonstrate via a detailed analysis of pulsar evolution that precise pulsar timing data can constrain the star's composition, through unstable global oscillations (r modes) whose damping is determined by microscopic properties of the interior. If not efficiently damped, these modes emit gravitational waves that quickly spin down a millisecond pulsar. As a first application of this general method, we find that ungapped interacting quark matter is consistent with both the observed radio and x-ray data, whereas for ordinary nuclear matter some additional enhanced damping mechanism is required. PMID:25554870

  4. Discovery of near-ultraviolet counterparts to millisecond pulsars in the globular cluster 47 Tucanae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rivera Sandoval, Liliana E.

    2016-07-01

    Up to date 144 radio millisecond pulsars have been found in Galactic globular clusters, of which about two-thirds are in a binary. However, until recently only for 10 of those binary millisecond pulsars the companion has been firmly identified at optical wavelengths. We present the discovery of 2 likely He white dwarf companions to millisecond pulsars in the globular cluster 47 Tucanae, as well as the confirmation of 2 tentative identifications in the same cluster, using near-ultraviolet images obtained with the Hubble Space Telescope. This represents an important contribution to the total number of optical counterparts known in Galactic globular clusters so far. We have also analyzed optical observations taken with Hubble. From these images, we obtained H_α results for some of the counterparts. Based on our UV photometry and He WD cooling models we derived the ages, the masses and the bolometric luminosities for all the He WD companions. I will discuss our results and their implications in the context of the standard millisecond pulsar formation scenario.

  5. The contribution of millisecond pulsars to the Galactic cosmic-ray lepton spectrum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Venter, Christo; Kopp, Andreas; Harding, Alice K.; Gonthier, Peter L.; Büsching, Ingo

    2015-03-01

    Pulsars are believed to be sources of relativistic electrons and positrons. The abundance of detections of γ -ray millisecond pulsars by Fermi Large Area Telescope coupled with their light curve characteristics that imply copious pair production in their magnetospheres, motivated us to investigate this old pulsar population as a source of Galactic electrons and positrons and their contribution to the enhancement in cosmic-ray positron flux at GeV energies. We use a population synthesis code to predict the source properties (number, position, and power) of the present-day Galactic millisecond pulsars, taking into account the latest Fermi and radio observations to calibrate the model output. Next, we simulate pair cascade spectra from these pulsars using a model that invokes an offset-dipole magnetic field. We assume free escape of the pairs from the pulsar environment. We then compute the cumulative spectrum of transported electrons and positrons at Earth, following their diffusion and energy losses as they propagate through the Galaxy. Our results indicate that the predicted particle flux increases for non-zero offsets of the magnetic polar caps. Comparing our predicted local interstellar spectrum and positron fraction to measurements by AMS-02, PAMELA, and Fermi, we find that millisecond pulsars are only modest contributors at a few tens of GeV, after which this leptonic spectral component cuts off. The positron fraction is therefore only slightly enhanced above 10 GeV relative to a background flux model. This implies that alternative sources such as young, nearby pulsars and supernova remnants should contribute additional primary positrons within the astrophysical scenario.

  6. Transformation of a star into a planet in a millisecond pulsar binary.

    PubMed

    Bailes, M; Bates, S D; Bhalerao, V; Bhat, N D R; Burgay, M; Burke-Spolaor, S; D'Amico, N; Johnston, S; Keith, M J; Kramer, M; Kulkarni, S R; Levin, L; Lyne, A G; Milia, S; Possenti, A; Spitler, L; Stappers, B; van Straten, W

    2011-09-23

    Millisecond pulsars are thought to be neutron stars that have been spun-up by accretion of matter from a binary companion. Although most are in binary systems, some 30% are solitary, and their origin is therefore mysterious. PSR J1719-1438, a 5.7-millisecond pulsar, was detected in a recent survey with the Parkes 64-meter radio telescope. We show that this pulsar is in a binary system with an orbital period of 2.2 hours. The mass of its companion is near that of Jupiter, but its minimum density of 23 grams per cubic centimeter suggests that it may be an ultralow-mass carbon white dwarf. This system may thus have once been an ultracompact low-mass x-ray binary, where the companion narrowly avoided complete destruction. PMID:21868629

  7. A New High-Frequency Search for Galactic Center Millisecond Pulsars using DSS-43

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemley, Cameron; Prince, Thomas Allen; Majid, Walid A.; Murchikova, Elena

    2016-01-01

    The primary 70-meter Deep Space Network antenna (DSS-43) in Canberra, Australia was equipped with a new high-frequency (18-28 GHz) receiver system in May 2015 for use in a search for Galactic Center (GC) millisecond pulsars. The primary motivation for this search is that a pulsar in the Galactic Center region (especially one that is gravitationally bound to the massive black hole at the GC) would provide unprecedented tests of gravity in the strong-field regime and would offer an entirely new tool for probing the characteristics of the Galactic Center region. Preparation for the GC pulsar search has involved the development of a single-pulse search pipeline that integrates tools from both Fortran and Python as well as the implementation of this pipeline on high performance CPUs. The original version of the search pipeline was developed using Vela Pulsar data from DSS-43, and a more refined version that relies upon chi-squared fitting techniques was ultimately developed using Crab Pulsar data. Future work will involve continued testing of the single-pulse search pipeline using data from the rotating radio transient (RRAT) J1819-1458, the characterization of RRAT pulses using high time resolution data from the new receiver system on DSS-43, and ultimately the analysis of high-frequency data using the existing pipeline to search for millisecond pulsars in the Galactic Center.

  8. Low-Frequency Variability of - for Timing of Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blandford, R.; Narayan, R.

    Rickett, Coles and Bourgois (1984) have argued that long-term (months to years) variation in pulsar flux is caused by fluctuations in the interstellar electron density on length scales ≡1013-16cm. In this paper the authors show that there should then be correlated fluctuations in the pulse arrival time, pulse width, and angular size. PSR 1937+21 is suitable for detecting some of the new effects. The timing noise and pulse width variation in this pulsar is estimated assuming a power-law spectrum for the electron density fluctuations, normalized using scintillation data.

  9. X-Radiation from the Millisecond Pulsar J0437-4715

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zavlin, V. E.; Pavlov, G. G.; Sanwal, D.; Manchester, R. N.; Truemper, J.; Halpern, J. P.; Becker, W.

    2002-01-01

    We report on spectral and timing observations of the nearest millisecond pulsar, 50437-471 5, with the Chandra X-Ray Observatory. The pulsar spectrum, detected up to 7 keV, cannot be described by a simple one-component model. We suggest that it consists of two components: a nonthermal power-law spectrum generated in the pulsar magnetosphere, with a photon index gamma approx. = 2, and a thermal spectrum emitted by heated polar caps, with a temperature decreasing outward from 2 to 0.5 MK. The lack of spectral features in the thermal component suggests that the neutron star surface is covered by a hydrogen (or helium) atmosphere. The timing analysis shows one X-ray pulse per period, with a pulsed fraction of about 40% and the peak at the same pulse phase as the radio peak. No synchrotron pulsar-wind nebula is seen in X-rays.

  10. The NANOGrav Nine-year Data Set: Astrometric Measurements of 37 Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matthews, Allison M.; Nice, David J.; Fonseca, Emmanuel; Arzoumanian, Zaven; Crowter, Kathryn; Demorest, Paul B.; Dolch, Timothy; Ellis, Justin A.; Ferdman, Robert D.; Gonzalez, Marjorie E.; Jones, Glenn; Jones, Megan L.; Lam, Michael T.; Levin, Lina; McLaughlin, Maura A.; Pennucci, Timothy T.; Ransom, Scott M.; Stairs, Ingrid H.; Stovall, Kevin; Swiggum, Joseph K.; Zhu, Weiwei

    2016-02-01

    Using the nine-year radio-pulsar timing data set from the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves (NANOGrav), collected at Arecibo Observatory and the Green Bank Telescope, we have measured the positions, proper motions, and parallaxes for 37 millisecond pulsars. We report twelve significant parallax measurements and distance measurements, and eighteen lower limits on distance. We compare these measurements to distances predicted by the NE2001 interstellar electron density model and find them to be in general agreement. We use measured orbital-decay rates and spin-down rates to confirm two of the parallax distances and to place distance upper limits on other sources; these distance limits agree with the parallax distances with one exception, PSR J1024-0719, which we discuss at length. Using the proper motions of the 37 NANOGrav pulsars in combination with other published measurements, we calculate the velocity dispersion of the millisecond pulsar population in Galactocentric coordinates. We find the radial, azimuthal, and perpendicular dispersions to be 46, 40, and 24 {km} {{{s}}}-1, respectively, in a model that allows for high-velocity outliers; or 81, 58, and 62 {km} {{{s}}}-1 for the full population. These velocity dispersions are far smaller than those of the canonical pulsar population, and are similar to older Galactic disk populations. This suggests that millisecond pulsar velocities are largely attributable to their being an old population rather than being artifacts of their birth and evolution as neutron star binary systems. The components of these velocity dispersions follow similar proportions to other Galactic populations, suggesting that our results are not biased by selection effects.

  11. AN ASTEROID BELT INTERPRETATION FOR THE TIMING VARIATIONS OF THE MILLISECOND PULSAR B1937+21

    SciTech Connect

    Shannon, R. M.; Cordes, J. M.; Metcalfe, T. S.; Lazio, T. J. W.; Jessner, A.; Kramer, M.; Lazaridis, K. E-mail: cordes@astro.cornell.edu

    2013-03-20

    Pulsar timing observations have revealed companions to neutron stars that include other neutron stars, white dwarfs, main-sequence stars, and planets. We demonstrate that the correlated and apparently stochastic residual times of arrival from the millisecond pulsar B1937+21 are consistent with the signature of an asteroid belt having a total mass {approx}< 0.05 M{sub Circled-Plus }. Unlike the solar system's asteroid belt, the best fit pulsar asteroid belt extends over a wide range of radii, consistent with the absence of any shepherding companions. We suggest that any pulsar that has undergone accretion-driven spin-up and subsequently evaporated its companion may harbor orbiting asteroid mass objects. The resulting timing variations may fundamentally limit the timing precision of some of the other millisecond pulsars. Observational tests of the asteroid belt model include identifying periodicities from individual asteroids, which are difficult; testing for statistical stationarity, which becomes possible when observations are conducted over a longer observing span; and searching for reflected radio emission.

  12. Millisecond Pulsars at Gamma-Ray Energies: Fermi Detections and Implications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.

    2011-01-01

    The Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope has revolutionized the study of pulsar physics with the discovery of new populations of radio quiet and millisecond gamma-ray pulsars. The Fermi Large Area Telescope has so far discovered approx.20 new gamma-ray millisecond pulsars (MSPs) by both folding at periods of known radio MSPs or by detecting them as gamma-ray sources that are followed up by radio pulsar searches. The second method has resulted in a phenomenally successful synergy, with -30 new radio MSPs (to date) having been discovered at Fermi unidentified source locations and the gamma-ray pulsations having then been detected in a number of these using the radio timing solutions. Many of the newly discovered MSPs may be suitable for addition to the collection of very stable MSPs used for gravitational wave detection. Detection of such a large number of MSPs was surprising, given that most have relatively low spin-down luminosity and surface field strength. I will discuss their properties and the implications for pulsar particle acceleration and emission, as well as their potential contribution to gamma-ray backgrounds and Galactic cosmic rays.

  13. Discovery of an Unidentified Fermi Object as a Black Widow-Like Millisecond Pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kong, A. K. H.; Huang, R. H. H.; Cheng, K. S.; Takata, J.; Yatsu, Y.; Cheung, C. C.; Donato, D.; Lin, L. C. C.; Kataoka, J.; Takahashi, Y.; Maeda, K.; Hui, C. Y.; Tam, P. H. T.

    2012-01-01

    The Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope has revolutionized our knowledge of the gamma-ray pulsar population, leading to the discovery of almost 100 gamma-ray pulsars and dozens of gamma-ray millisecond pulsars (MSPs). Although the outer-gap model predicts different sites of emission for the radio and gamma-ray pulsars, until now all of the known gamma-ray MSPs have been visible in the radio. Here we report the discovery of a radio-quiet" gamma-ray emitting MSP candidate by using Fermi, Chandra, Swift, and optical observations. The X-ray and gamma-ray properties of the source are consistent with known gamma-ray pulsars. We also found a 4.63-hr orbital period in optical and X-ray data. We suggest that the source is a black widow-like MSP with a approx. 0.1 Stellar Mass late-type companion star. Based on the profile of the optical and X-ray light-curves, the companion star is believed to be heated by the pulsar while the X-ray emissions originate from pulsar magnetosphere and/or from intra-binary shock. No radio detection of the source has been reported yet and although no gamma-ray/radio pulsation has been found, we estimated that the spin period of the MSP is approx. 3-5 ms based on the inferred gamma-ray luminosity.

  14. Improved timing of the millisecond pulsar PSR 1937+21 using real-time coherent dedispersion

    SciTech Connect

    Hankins, T.H.; Stinebring, D.R.; Rawley, L.A.

    1987-04-01

    Profiles of the millisecond pulsar PSR 1937+21 have been obtained with 6-micron resolution using a real-time hardware dispersion removal device. This dedisperser has a potential resolution of better than 0.5 microsec and is immune to time-of-arrival jitter caused by scintillation-induced spectral gradients across the receiver passband. It significantly reduces the time-of-arrival residuals when compared with the timing technique currently in use. This increased timing accuracy, when utilized in a long-term timing program of millisec pulsars, will improve the solar system ephemeris and will substantially improve the detection limit of a gravitational wave background. 27 references.

  15. Discovery of millisecond pulsars in radio searches of southern Fermi Large Area Telescope sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keith, M. J.; Johnston, S.; Ray, P. S.; Ferrara, E. C.; Saz Parkinson, P. M.; Çelik, Ö.; Belfiore, A.; Donato, D.; Cheung, C. C.; Abdo, A. A.; Camilo, F.; Freire, P. C. C.; Guillemot, L.; Harding, A. K.; Kramer, M.; Michelson, P. F.; Ransom, S. M.; Romani, R. W.; Smith, D. A.; Thompson, D. J.; Weltevrede, P.; Wood, K. S.

    2011-06-01

    Using the Parkes Radio Telescope, we have carried out deep observations of 11 unassociated gamma-ray sources. Periodicity searches of these data have discovered two millisecond pulsars, PSR J1103-5403 (1FGL J1103.9-5355) and PSR J2241-5236 (1FGL J2241.9-5236), and a long-period pulsar, PSR J1604-44 (1FGL J1604.7-4443). In addition, we searched for but did not detect any radio pulsations from six gamma-ray pulsars discovered by the Fermi satellite to a level of ˜0.04 mJy (for pulsars with a 10 per cent duty cycle). The timing of the millisecond pulsar PSR J1103-5403 has shown that its position is 9 arcmin from the centroid of the gamma-ray source. Since these observations were carried out, independent evidence has shown that 1FGL J1103.9-5355 is associated with the flat spectrum radio source PKS 1101-536. It appears certain that the pulsar is not associated with the gamma-ray source, despite the seemingly low probability of a chance detection of a radio millisecond pulsar. We consider that PSR J1604-44 is a chance discovery of a weak, long-period pulsar and is unlikely to be associated with 1FGL J1604.7-4443. PSR J2241-5236 has a spin period of 2.2 ms and orbits a very low mass companion with a 3.5-h orbital period. The relatively high flux density and low dispersion measure of PSR J2241-5236 make it an excellent candidate for high precision timing experiments. The gamma rays of 1FGL J2241.9-5236 have a spectrum that is well modelled by a power law with an exponential cut-off, and phase binning with the radio ephemeris results in a multipeaked gamma-ray pulse profile. Observations with Chandra have identified a coincident X-ray source within 0.1 arcsec of the position of the pulsar obtained by radio timing.

  16. Was the millisecond pulsar in SN1987A spun up or born spinning fast?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Woosley, S. E.; Chevalier, R. A.

    1989-01-01

    It is argued here that the millisecond pulsar in SN1987A has been spun up by accretion. The accreted angular momentum in this case comes from the mixed mantle and helium core of the ejecta, of which roughly 0.1 solar mass fell back during the first day after the explosion. This sizable mass, and hence angular momentum, of the reimploded material is at least partly a consequence of the blue supergiant nature of the progenitor star.

  17. Observations and Modeling of Gamma-ray Millisecond Pulsars seen with the Fermi LAT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, T. J.; Venter, C.; Harding, A. K.; Guillemot, L.

    2011-08-01

    We present a summary of gamma-ray millisecond pulsar (MSP) observations with the Fermi Large Area Telescope. The radio and gamma-ray light curves of these MSPs have been modeled in the framework of the retarded vacuum dipole magnetic field. Likelihood fitting of the radio and gamma-ray light curves with geometric emission models allows us to give model-dependent confidence contours for the viewing geometry in these systems which are complementary to those from polarization measurements.

  18. Was the millisecond pulsar in SN1987A spun up or born spinning fast?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woosley, S. E.; Chevalier, R. A.

    1989-03-01

    It is argued here that the millisecond pulsar in SN1987A has been spun up by accretion. The accreted angular momentum in this case comes from the mixed mantle and helium core of the ejecta, of which roughly 0.1 solar mass fell back during the first day after the explosion. This sizable mass, and hence angular momentum, of the reimploded material is at least partly a consequence of the blue supergiant nature of the progenitor star.

  19. The 2002 Outburst of the Millisecond Accreting Pulsar XTE J1751-305

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markwardt, C. B.; Swank, J. H.

    2002-12-01

    The millisecond accreting pulsar XTE J1751--305 was discovered in the galactic bulge region by the RXTE PCA in early 2002. It is one of only a handful of now-known millisecond pulsars that are presumably spinning up by mass accretion (along with SAX J1808.4--3658 and XTE J0929--314). We will present an analysis of the complete outburst of XTE J1751--305, including spectroscopy and timing. The outburst followed a similar track to the first known millisecond accreting pulsar, SAX J1808.4--3658, with a fast rise, exponential decay (time constant ~ 7 day), and a sudden cut-off. Over the outburst, the energy spectral shape remained essentially constant, and showed no strong line features. Aside from the pulsations, XTE J1751--305 also exhibited lower frequency fluctuations in the power spectrum, which are typical of low mass X-ray binaries. While there appears to be no strong kiloHertz quasiperiodic oscillations, there is some evidence for a weak and broad power spectral excess feature centered on a few hundred Hertz.

  20. A Possible X-Ray Detection of the Binary Millisecond Pulsar J1012+5307

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, Jules P.; Oliversen, Ronald (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    A possible X-ray detection of the newly discovered binary millisecond radio pulsar PSR J1012+5307 was obtained from an archival ROSAT observation. The 80 +/- 24 photons detected correspond to a 0.1 - 2.4 keV luminosity of approx. = 2.5 x 10(exp 30) erg/s at the nominal dispersion-measure distance of 520 pc. This luminosity is a factor of 2 less than that of PSR J0437-4715, a near twin of PSR J1012+5307 in its spin parameters and energetics, and the only millisecond pulsar from which pulsed X-rays have definitely been detected. PSR J1012+5307 is also within 6 deg of the "HI hole" in Ursa Major, providing a new estimate of the electron column density through this region which confirms that the ionized column density is also low. The small neutral column density to PSR J1012+5307, N(sub H) less than 7.5 x 10(exp 19)/sq cm, will facilitate future soft X-ray study, which will help to discriminate between thermal and nonthermal origins of the X-ray emission in millisecond pulsars.

  1. High-energy emission from the eclipsing millisecond pulsar PSR 1957+20

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arons, Jonathan; Tavani, Marco

    1993-01-01

    The properties of the high-energy emission expected from the eclipsing millisecond pulsar system PSR 1957+20 are investigated. Emission is considered by both the relativistic shock produced by the pulsar wind in the nebula surrounding the binary and by the shock constraining the mass outflow from the companion star of PSR 1957+20. On the basis of the results of microscopic plasma physical models of relativistic shocks it is suggested that the high-energy radiation is produced in the range from X-rays to MeV gamma rays in the binary and in the range from 0.01 eV to about 40 keV in the nebula. Doppler boost of the emission in the radiating wind suggests the flux should vary on the orbital time scale, with the largest flux observed roughly coincident with the pulsar's radio eclipse.

  2. New Neighbours: Modelling the Growing Population of gamma-ray Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Venter, C.; Harding, A. K.; Johnson, T. J.

    2010-01-01

    The Fermi Large Area Telescope, in collaboration with several groups from the radio community. have had marvelous success at uncovering new gamma-ray millisecond pulsars (MSPs). In fact, MSPs now make up a sizable fraction of the total number of known gamma-ray pulsars. The MSP population is characterized by a variety of pulse profile shapes, peak separations, and radio-to-gamma phase lags, with some members exhibiting nearly phase-aligned radio and gamma-ray light curves (LCs). The MSPs' short spin periods underline the importance of including special relativistic effects in LC calculations, even for emission originating from near the stellar surface. We present results on modelling and classification of MSP LCs using standard pulsar model geometries.

  3. IDENTIFICATION OF THE OPTICAL COUNTERPART OF FERMI BLACK WIDOW MILLISECOND PULSAR PSR J1544+4937

    SciTech Connect

    Tang, Sumin; Phinney, E. Sterl; Prince, Thomas A.; Bellm, Eric; Cao, Yi; Perley, Daniel A.; Kaplan, David L.; Breton, Rene P.; Bildsten, Lars; Kong, Albert K. H.; Yen, T.-C.; Sesar, Branimir; Wolf, William M.

    2014-08-10

    We report the optical identification of the companion to the Fermi black widow millisecond pulsar PSR J1544+4937. We find a highly variable source on Keck Low Resolution Imaging Spectrometer images at the nominal pulsar position, with 2 mag variations over orbital period in the B, g, R, and I bands. The nearly achromatic light curves are difficult to explain with a simply irradiated hemisphere model, and suggest that the optical emission is dominated by a nearly isothermal hot patch on the surface of the companion facing the pulsar. We roughly constrain the distance to PSR J1544+4937 to be between 2 and 5 kpc. A more reliable distance measurement is needed in order to constrain the composition of the companion.

  4. SAX J1808.4-3658, an accreting millisecond pulsar shining in gamma rays?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Oña Wilhelmi, E.; Papitto, A.; Li, J.; Rea, N.; Torres, D. F.; Burderi, L.; Di Salvo, T.; Iaria, R.; Riggio, A.; Sanna, A.

    2016-03-01

    We report the detection of a possible gamma-ray counterpart of the accreting millisecond pulsar SAX J1808.4-3658. The analysis of ˜6 yr of data from the Large Area Telescope on board the Fermi gamma-ray Space Telescope (Fermi-LAT) within a region of 15° radius around the position of the pulsar reveals a point gamma-ray source detected at a significance of ˜6σ (test statistic TS = 32), with a position compatible with that of SAX J1808.4-3658 within the 95 per cent confidence level. The energy flux in the energy range between 0.6 and 10 GeV amounts to (2.1 ± 0.5) × 10-12 erg cm-2 s-1 and the spectrum is represented well by a power-law function with photon index 2.1 ± 0.1. We searched for significant variation of the flux at the spin frequency of the pulsar and for orbital modulation, taking into account the trials due to the uncertainties in the position, the orbital motion of the pulsar and the intrinsic evolution of the pulsar spin. No significant deviation from a constant flux at any time-scale was found, preventing a firm identification via time variability. Nonetheless, the association of the LAT source as the gamma-ray counterpart of SAX J1808.4-3658 would match the emission expected from the millisecond pulsar, if it switches on as a rotation-powered source during X-ray quiescence.

  5. On the Formation of Eccentric Millisecond Pulsars with Helium White-dwarf Companions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Antoniadis, John

    2014-12-01

    Millisecond pulsars (MSPs) orbiting helium white dwarfs (WDs) in eccentric orbits challenge the established binary-evolution paradigm that predicts efficient orbital circularization during the mass-transfer episode that spins up the pulsar. Freire & Tauris recently proposed that these binary MSPs may instead form from the rotationally delayed accretion-induced collapse of a massive WD. However, their hypothesis predicts that eccentric systems preferably host low-mass pulsars and travel with small systemic velocities—in tension with new observational constraints. Here, I show that a substantial growth in eccentricity may alternatively arise from the dynamical interaction of the binary with a circumbinary disk. Such a disk may form from ejected donor material during hydrogen flash episodes, when the neutron star is already an active radio pulsar and tidal forces can no longer circularize the binary. I demonstrate that a short-lived (104-105 yr) disk can result in eccentricities of e ~= 0.01-0.15 for orbital periods between 15 and 50 days. Finally, I propose that, more generally, the disk hypothesis may explain the lack of circular binary pulsars for the aforementioned orbital-period range.

  6. ON THE FORMATION OF ECCENTRIC MILLISECOND PULSARS WITH HELIUM WHITE-DWARF COMPANIONS

    SciTech Connect

    Antoniadis, John

    2014-12-20

    Millisecond pulsars (MSPs) orbiting helium white dwarfs (WDs) in eccentric orbits challenge the established binary-evolution paradigm that predicts efficient orbital circularization during the mass-transfer episode that spins up the pulsar. Freire and Tauris recently proposed that these binary MSPs may instead form from the rotationally delayed accretion-induced collapse of a massive WD. However, their hypothesis predicts that eccentric systems preferably host low-mass pulsars and travel with small systemic velocities—in tension with new observational constraints. Here, I show that a substantial growth in eccentricity may alternatively arise from the dynamical interaction of the binary with a circumbinary disk. Such a disk may form from ejected donor material during hydrogen flash episodes, when the neutron star is already an active radio pulsar and tidal forces can no longer circularize the binary. I demonstrate that a short-lived (10{sup 4}-10{sup 5} yr) disk can result in eccentricities of e ≅ 0.01-0.15 for orbital periods between 15 and 50 days. Finally, I propose that, more generally, the disk hypothesis may explain the lack of circular binary pulsars for the aforementioned orbital-period range.

  7. MILLISECOND PULSAR AGES: IMPLICATIONS OF BINARY EVOLUTION AND A MAXIMUM SPIN LIMIT

    SciTech Connect

    Kiziltan, Buelent; Thorsett, Stephen E.

    2010-05-20

    In the absence of constraints from the binary companion or supernova remnant, the standard method for estimating pulsar ages is to infer an age from the rate of spin-down. While the generic spin-down age may give realistic estimates for normal pulsars, it can fail for pulsars with very short periods. Details of the spin-up process during the low-mass X-ray binary (LMXB) phase pose additional constraints on the period (P) and spin-down rates ( P-dot ) that may consequently affect the age estimate. Here, we propose a new recipe to estimate millisecond pulsar (MSP) ages that parametrically incorporates constraints arising from binary evolution and limiting physics. We show that the standard method can be improved by this approach to achieve age estimates closer to the true age while the standard spin-down age may overestimate or underestimate the age of the pulsar by more than a factor of {approx}10 in the millisecond regime. We use this approach to analyze the population on a broader scale. For instance, in order to understand the dominant energy loss mechanism after the onset of radio emission, we test for a range of plausible braking indices. We find that a braking index of n = 3 is consistent with the observed MSP population. We demonstrate the existence and quantify the potential contributions of two main sources of age corruption: the previously known 'age bias' due to secular acceleration and 'age contamination' driven by sub-Eddington progenitor accretion rates. We explicitly show that descendants of LMXBs that have accreted at very low rates ( m-dot << M-dot{sub Edd}) will exhibit ages that appear older than the age of the Galaxy. We further elaborate on this technique, the implications and potential solutions it offers regarding MSP evolution, the underlying age distribution, and the post-accretion energy loss mechanism.

  8. X-Ray Emission from the Millisecond Pulsar J1012+5307

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, Jules P.; Wang, F. Y.-H.; Oliversen, Ronald (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The recently discovered 5.3 ms pulsar J1012+5307 at a distance of 520 pc is in an area of the sky which is particularly deficient in absorbing gas. The column density along the line of sight is less than 7.5 x 10(exp 19)/sq cm, which facilitates soft X-ray observations. Halpern reported a possible ROSAT PSPC detection of the pulsar in a serendipitous, off-axis observation. We have now confirmed the X-ray emission of PSR J1012+5307 in a 23 ksec observation with the ROSAT HRI. A point source is detected within 3 sec. of the radio position. Its count rate of 1.6 +/- 0.3 x 10(exp -3)/s corresponds to an unabsorbed 0.1 - 2.4 keV flux of 6.4 x 10(exp -14) ergs/sq cm s, similar to that reported previously. This counts-to-flux conversion is valid for N(sub H) = 5 x 10(exp 19)/sq cm, and either a power-law spectrum of photon index 2.5 or a blackbody of kT = 0.1 keV. The implied X-ray luminosity of 2.0 x 10(exp 30) ergs/ s is 5 x 10(exp -4) of the pulsar's spin-down power E, and similar to that of the nearest millisecond pulsar J0437-4715, which is nearly a twin of J1012+5307 in P and E. We subjected the 37 photons (and 13 background counts) within the source region to a pulsar search, but no evidence for pulsation was found. The pulsar apparently emits over a large fraction of its rotation cycle, and the absence of sharp modulation can be taken as evidence for surface thermal emission, as favored for PSR J0437-4715, rather than magnetospheric X-ray emission which is apparent in the sharp pulses of the much more energetic millisecond pulsar B1821-24. A further test of of the interpretation will be made with a longer ROSAT observation, which will increase the number of photons collected by a factor of 5, and permit a more sensitive examination of the light curve for modulation due to emission from heated polar caps. If found, such modulation will be further evidence that surface reheating by the impact of particles accelerated along open field lines operates in these approx

  9. PSR J1723–2837: AN ECLIPSING BINARY RADIO MILLISECOND PULSAR

    SciTech Connect

    Crawford, Fronefield; Lyne, Andrew G.; Stairs, Ingrid H.; Kaplan, David L.; McLaughlin, Maura A.; Lorimer, Duncan R.; Freire, Paulo C. C.; Kramer, Michael; Burgay, Marta; D'Amico, Nichi; Possenti, Andrea; Camilo, Fernando; Faulkner, Andrew; Manchester, Richard N.; Steeghs, Danny

    2013-10-10

    We present a study of PSR J1723–2837, an eclipsing, 1.86 ms millisecond binary radio pulsar discovered in the Parkes Multibeam survey. Radio timing indicates that the pulsar has a circular orbit with a 15 hr orbital period, a low-mass companion, and a measurable orbital period derivative. The eclipse fraction of ∼15% during the pulsar's orbit is twice the Roche lobe size inferred for the companion. The timing behavior is significantly affected by unmodeled systematics of astrophysical origin, and higher-order orbital period derivatives are needed in the timing solution to account for these variations. We have identified the pulsar's (non-degenerate) companion using archival ultraviolet, optical, and infrared survey data and new optical photometry. Doppler shifts from optical spectroscopy confirm the star's association with the pulsar and indicate a pulsar-to-companion mass ratio of 3.3 ± 0.5, corresponding to a companion mass range of 0.4 to 0.7 M{sub ☉} and an orbital inclination angle range of between 30° and 41°, assuming a pulsar mass range of 1.4-2.0 M{sub ☉}. Spectroscopy indicates a spectral type of G for the companion and an inferred Roche-lobe-filling distance that is consistent with the distance estimated from radio dispersion. The features of PSR J1723–2837 indicate that it is likely a 'redback' system. Unlike the five other Galactic redbacks discovered to date, PSR J1723–2837 has not been detected as a γ-ray source with Fermi. This may be due to an intrinsic spin-down luminosity that is much smaller than the measured value if the unmeasured contribution from proper motion is large.

  10. Strong Support for the Millisecond Pulsar Origin of the Galactic Center GeV Excess.

    PubMed

    Bartels, Richard; Krishnamurthy, Suraj; Weniger, Christoph

    2016-02-01

    Using γ-ray data from the Fermi Large Area Telescope, various groups have identified a clear excess emission in the Inner Galaxy, at energies around a few GeV. This excess resembles remarkably well a signal from dark-matter annihilation. One of the most compelling astrophysical interpretations is that the excess is caused by the combined effect of a previously undetected population of dim γ-ray sources. Because of their spectral similarity, the best candidates are millisecond pulsars. Here, we search for this hypothetical source population, using a novel approach based on wavelet decomposition of the γ-ray sky and the statistics of Gaussian random fields. Using almost seven years of Fermi-LAT data, we detect a clustering of photons as predicted for the hypothetical population of millisecond pulsar, with a statistical significance of 10.0σ. For plausible values of the luminosity function, this population explains 100% of the observed excess emission. We argue that other extragalactic or Galactic sources, a mismodeling of Galactic diffuse emission, or the thick-disk population of pulsars are unlikely to account for this observation. PMID:26894696

  11. Detection of Pulsed Emission from the Millisecond Pulsar PSR J2145-0750 Below 100 MHz

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, Gregory B.; Dowell, J.; Wavelength Array, Long

    2014-01-01

    Millisecond pulsars (MPSs) are distinguished from normal pulsars by faster rotation periods, weaker magnetic fields, and flux density spectra that are well fit by a single power law down to 100 MHz. Below 100 MHz some MSPs show a break in the power law, however, additional observations, particularly of the pulse profile, are needed in this frequency range to provide better constraints on emission mechanisms. The first station of the Long Wavelength Array, LWA1, is a low frequency telescope that is ideally suited to address these questions. We present recent results from LWA1 on the millisecond pulsar PSR J2145-0750. Using coherent dedispersion we detected pulsed emission between 37 and 85 MHz. From this we derive flux densities and pulse profiles at 41, 57, 65, 73, and 81 MHz. We find that the flux density spectrum of PSR J2145-0750 appears to flatten below 100 MHz relative to the spectral index of ~-1.6 found in the literature. We also find that the pulse profile shows little evolution over this frequency range and is similar to profiles found at 102 MHz. We also discuss the prospects for precision dispersion measure monitoring at these frequencies. Construction of the LWA has been supported by the Office of Naval Research under Contract N00014-07-C-0147. Support for operations and continuing development of the LWA1 is provided by the National Science Foundation under grants AST-1139963 and AST-1139974 of the University Radio Observatory program.

  12. A PARALLAX DISTANCE AND MASS ESTIMATE FOR THE TRANSITIONAL MILLISECOND PULSAR SYSTEM J1023+0038

    SciTech Connect

    Deller, A. T.; Archibald, A. M.; Kaspi, V. M.; Brisken, W. F.; Chatterjee, S.; Janssen, G. H.; Lyne, A. G.; Stappers, B.; Lorimer, D.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Ransom, S.; Stairs, I. H.

    2012-09-10

    The recently discovered transitional millisecond pulsar system J1023+0038 exposes a crucial evolutionary phase of recycled neutron stars for multiwavelength study. The system, comprising the neutron star itself, its stellar companion, and the surrounding medium, is visible across the electromagnetic spectrum from the radio to X-ray/gamma-ray regimes and offers insight into the recycling phase of millisecond pulsar evolution. Here, we report on multiple-epoch astrometric observations with the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) which give a system parallax of 0.731 {+-} 0.022 milliarcseconds (mas) and a proper motion of 17.98 {+-} 0.05 mas yr{sup -1}. By combining our results with previous optical observations, we are able to use the parallax distance of 1368{sup +42}{sub -{sub 39}} pc to estimate the mass of the pulsar to be 1.71 {+-} 0.16 M{sub Sun }, and we are also able to measure the three-dimensional space velocity of the system to be 126 {+-} 5 km s{sup -1}. Despite the precise nature of the VLBA measurements, the remaining {approx}3% distance uncertainty dominates the 0.16 M{sub Sun} error on our mass estimate.

  13. Flux Density Variations in the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spiewak, Renée; Shannon, Ryan; Hobbs, George; Kerr, Matthew

    2015-01-01

    Precise timing of an ensemble of pulsars spread across the sky (a pulsar timing array, PTA) can be used to search for gravitational waves. The Parkes Pulsar Timing Array project (PPTA) currently observes 23 pulsars with the Parkes Radio Telescope, largely in the southern sky, with the primary goal of searching for gravitational waves. The pulsars in the sample show large variations in flux density due to refractive scintillation in the interstellar medium (ISM). These flux variations cause timing uncertainty to vary by more than an order of magnitude. A better understanding of flux-density variations associated with the interstellar medium (ISM) is crucial for optimizing observing strategy and increase the sensitivity of the PPTA to gravitational waves. Flux-density variations can also potentially be caused by magnetospheric state changes. We use flux density time series and structure functions to examine both the properties of the ISM and search for intrinsic flux variation in these pulsars. We present intriguing features of the datasets and general implications of the results.

  14. Twenty-one millisecond pulsars in Terzan 5 using the Green Bank Telescope.

    PubMed

    Ransom, Scott M; Hessels, Jason W T; Stairs, Ingrid H; Freire, Paulo C C; Camilo, Fernando; Kaspi, Victoria M; Kaplan, David L

    2005-02-11

    We have identified 21 millisecond pulsars (MSPs) in globular cluster Terzan 5 by using the Green Bank Telescope, bringing the total of known MSPs in Terzan 5 to 24. These discoveries confirm fundamental predictions of globular cluster and binary system evolution. Thirteen of the new MSPs are in binaries, of which two show eclipses and two have highly eccentric orbits. The relativistic periastron advance for the two eccentric systems indicates that at least one of these pulsars has a mass 1.68 times greater than the mass of the Sun at 95% confidence. Such large neutron star masses constrain the equation of state of matter at or beyond the nuclear equilibrium density. PMID:15653465

  15. A Likely Millisecond Pulsar Binary Counterpart for Fermi Source 2FGL J2039.6-5620

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Romani, Roger W.

    2015-10-01

    We have identified an optical/X-ray binary with an orbital period of Pb = 5.47 hr as the likely counterpart of the Fermi source 2FGL J2039.6-5620. GROND, SOAR, and DES observations provide an accurate orbital period and allow us to compare to the light curve of an archival XMM exposure. Like many short-period optical/X-ray binaries associated with Large Area Telescope sources, this may be an interacting (black widow/redback) millisecond pulsar binary. The X-ray light curve is consistent with the emission associated with an intrabinary shock. The optical light curve shows evidence of companion heating, but has a peculiar asymmetric double peak. The nature of this optical structure is not yet clear; additional optical studies and, in particular, detection of an orbital modulation in a γ-ray pulsar are needed to elucidate the nature of this peculiar source.

  16. PSR J1024–0719: A Millisecond Pulsar in an Unusual Long-period Orbit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaplan, David L.; Kupfer, Thomas; Nice, David J.; Irrgang, Andreas; Heber, Ulrich; Arzoumanian, Zaven; Beklen, Elif; Crowter, Kathryn; DeCesar, Megan E.; Demorest, Paul B.; Dolch, Timothy; Ellis, Justin A.; Ferdman, Robert D.; Ferrara, Elizabeth C.; Fonseca, Emmanuel; Gentile, Peter A.; Jones, Glenn; Jones, Megan L.; Kreuzer, Simon; Lam, Michael T.; Levin, Lina; Lorimer, Duncan R.; Lynch, Ryan S.; McLaughlin, Maura A.; Miller, Adam A.; Ng, Cherry; Pennucci, Timothy T.; Prince, Tom A.; Ransom, Scott M.; Ray, Paul S.; Spiewak, Renee; Stairs, Ingrid H.; Stovall, Kevin; Swiggum, Joseph; Zhu, Weiwei

    2016-07-01

    PSR J1024–0719 is a millisecond pulsar that was long thought to be isolated. However, puzzling results concerning its velocity, distance, and low rotational period derivative have led to a reexamination of its properties. We present updated radio timing observations along with new and archival optical data which show that PSR J1024–0719 is most likely in a long-period (2–20 kyr) binary system with a low-mass (≈ 0.4 {M}ȯ ), low-metallicity (Z≈ -0.9 dex) main-sequence star. Such a system can explain most of the anomalous properties of this pulsar. We suggest that this system formed through a dynamical exchange in a globular cluster that ejected it into a halo orbit, which is consistent with the low observed metallicity for the stellar companion. Further astrometric and radio timing observations such as measurement of the third period derivative could strongly constrain the range of orbital parameters.

  17. Constraints on the R-mode oscillations from surface temperatures of millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guver, Tolga; Schwenzer, Kai

    2016-07-01

    r-modes are toroidal oscillation modes expected to occur in neutron stars and carry away energy and angular momentum in the form of gravitational waves. These modes can be unstable as long as the gravitational wave emission drives the oscillation faster than viscosity damps it. Unstable r-modes have to be saturated by a non-linear dissipative mechanism which could strongly heat the star and result in observable X-ray signatures. Using the existing spin frequency and surface temperature measurements or limits of millisecond pulsars we present our initial results constraining the physics of the r-mode oscillations.

  18. Magnetic fields generated by r-modes in accreting millisecond pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Cuofano, Carmine; Drago, Alessandro

    2010-10-15

    In rotating neutron stars the existence of the Coriolis force allows the presence of the so-called Rossby oscillations (r-modes) which are known to be unstable to emission of gravitational waves. Here, for the first time, we introduce the magnetic damping rate in the evolution equations of r-modes. We show that r-modes can generate very strong toroidal fields in the core of accreting millisecond pulsars by inducing differential rotation. We shortly discuss the instabilities of the generated magnetic field and its long time-scale evolution in order to clarify how the generated magnetic field can stabilize the star.

  19. Predictions of Gamma-ray Emission from Globular Cluster Millisecond Pulsars Above 100 MeV

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Venter, C.; de Jaker, O.C.; Clapson, A.C.

    2009-01-01

    The recent Fermi detection of the globular cluster (GC) 47 Tucanae highlighted the importance of modeling collective gamma-ray emission of millisecond pulsars (MSPs) in GCs. Steady flux from such populations is also expected in the very high energy (VHE) domain covered by ground-based Cherenkov telescopes. We present pulsed curvature radiation (CR) as well as unpulsed inverse Compton (IC) calculations for an ensemble of MSPs in the GCs 47 Tucanae and Terzan 5. We demonstrate that the CR from these GCs should be easily detectable for Fermi, while constraints on the total number of MSps and the nebular B-field may be derived using the IC flux components.

  20. Properties and Evolution of the Redback Millisecond Pulsar Binary PSR J2129-0429

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bellm, Eric C.; Kaplan, David L.; Breton, Rene P.; Phinney, E. Sterl; Bhalerao, Varun B.; Camilo, Fernando; Dahal, Sumit; Djorgovski, S. G.; Drake, Andrew J.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Laher, Russ R.; Levitan, David B.; Lewis, Fraser; Mahabal, Ashish A.; Ofek, Eran O.; Prince, Thomas A.; Ransom, Scott M.; Roberts, Mallory S. E.; Russell, David M.; Sesar, Branimir; Surace, Jason A.; Tang, Sumin

    2016-01-01

    PSR J2129-0429 is a “redback” eclipsing millisecond pulsar binary with an unusually long 15.2 hr orbit. It was discovered by the Green Bank Telescope in a targeted search of unidentified Fermi gamma-ray sources. The pulsar companion is optically bright (mean mR = 16.6 mag), allowing us to construct the longest baseline photometric data set available for such a system. We present 10 years of archival and new photometry of the companion from the Lincoln Near-Earth Asteroid Research Survey, the Catalina Real-time Transient Survey, the Palomar Transient Factory, the Palomar 60 inch, and the Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope. Radial velocity spectroscopy using the Double-Beam Spectrograph on the Palomar 200 inch indicates that the pulsar is massive: 1.74 ± 0.18 {M}⊙ . The G-type pulsar companion has mass 0.44 ± 0.04 {M}⊙ , one of the heaviest known redback companions. It is currently 95 ± 1% Roche-lobe filling and only mildly irradiated by the pulsar. We identify a clear 13.1 mmag yr-1 secular decline in the mean magnitude of the companion as well as smaller-scale variations in the optical light curve shape. This behavior may indicate that the companion is cooling. Binary evolution calculations indicate that PSR J2129-0429 has an orbital period almost exactly at the bifurcation period between systems that converge into tighter orbits as black widows and redbacks and those that diverge into wider pulsar-white dwarf binaries. Its eventual fate may depend on whether it undergoes future episodes of mass transfer and increased irradiation.

  1. A CHANDRA X-RAY OBSERVATION OF THE BINARY MILLISECOND PULSAR PSR J1023+0038

    SciTech Connect

    Bogdanov, Slavko; Archibald, Anne M.; Kaspi, Victoria M.; Hessels, Jason W. T.; Lorimer, Duncan; McLaughlin, Maura A.; Ransom, Scott M.; Stairs, Ingrid H.

    2011-12-01

    We present a Chandra X-Ray Observatory ACIS-S variability, spectroscopy, and imaging study of the peculiar binary containing the millisecond pulsar J1023+0038. The X-ray emission from the system exhibits highly significant (12.5{sigma}) large-amplitude (factor of two to three) orbital variability over the five consecutive orbits covered by the observation, with a pronounced decline in the flux at all energies at superior conjunction. This can be naturally explained by a partial geometric occultation by the secondary star of an X-ray-emitting intrabinary shock, produced by the interaction of outflows from the two stars. The depth and duration of the eclipse imply that the intrabinary shock is localized near or at the surface of the companion star and close to the inner Lagrangian point. The energetics of the shock favor a magnetically dominated pulsar wind that is focused into the orbital plane, requiring close alignment of the pulsar spin and orbital angular momentum axes. The X-ray spectrum consists of a dominant non-thermal component and at least one thermal component, likely originating from the heated pulsar polar caps, although a portion of this emission may be from an optically thin 'corona'. We find no evidence for extended emission due to a pulsar wind nebula or bow shock down to a limiting luminosity of L{sub X} {approx}< 3.6 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 29} erg s{sup -1} (0.3-8 keV), {approx}< 7 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -6} of the pulsar spin-down luminosity, for a distance of 1.3 kpc and an assumed power-law spectrum with photon index {Gamma} = 1.5.

  2. HIGH-FIDELITY RADIO ASTRONOMICAL POLARIMETRY USING A MILLISECOND PULSAR AS A POLARIZED REFERENCE SOURCE

    SciTech Connect

    Van Straten, W.

    2013-01-15

    A new method of polarimetric calibration is presented in which the instrumental response is derived from regular observations of PSR J0437-4715 based on the assumption that the mean polarized emission from this millisecond pulsar remains constant over time. The technique is applicable to any experiment in which high-fidelity polarimetry is required over long timescales; it is demonstrated by calibrating 7.2 years of high-precision timing observations of PSR J1022+1001 made at the Parkes Observatory. Application of the new technique followed by arrival time estimation using matrix template matching yields post-fit residuals with an uncertainty-weighted standard deviation of 880 ns, two times smaller than that of arrival time residuals obtained via conventional methods of calibration and arrival time estimation. The precision achieved by this experiment yields the first significant measurements of the secular variation of the projected semimajor axis, the precession of periastron, and the Shapiro delay; it also places PSR J1022+1001 among the 10 best pulsars regularly observed as part of the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array (PPTA) project. It is shown that the timing accuracy of a large fraction of the pulsars in the PPTA is currently limited by the systematic timing error due to instrumental polarization artifacts. More importantly, long-term variations of systematic error are correlated between different pulsars, which adversely affects the primary objectives of any pulsar timing array experiment. These limitations may be overcome by adopting the techniques presented in this work, which relax the demand for instrumental polarization purity and thereby have the potential to reduce the development cost of next-generation telescopes such as the Square Kilometre Array.

  3. HIGH-PRECISION TIMING OF FIVE MILLISECOND PULSARS: SPACE VELOCITIES, BINARY EVOLUTION, AND EQUIVALENCE PRINCIPLES

    SciTech Connect

    Gonzalez, M. E.; Stairs, I. H.; Ferdman, R. D.; Lyne, A. G.; Freire, P. C. C.; Kramer, M.; Nice, D. J.; Demorest, P. B.; Ransom, S. M.; Camilo, F.; Hobbs, G.; Manchester, R. N.

    2011-12-20

    We present high-precision timing of five millisecond pulsars (MSPs) carried out for more than seven years; four pulsars are in binary systems and one is isolated. We are able to measure the pulsars' proper motions and derive an estimate for their space velocities. The measured two-dimensional velocities are in the range 70-210 km s{sup -1}, consistent with those measured for other MSPs. We also use all the available proper motion information for isolated and binary MSPs to update the known velocity distribution for these populations. As found by earlier works, we find that the velocity distribution of binary and isolated MSPs are indistinguishable with the current data. Four of the pulsars in our observing program are highly recycled with low-mass white dwarf companions and we are able to derive accurate binary parameters for these systems. For three of these binary systems, we are able to place initial constraints on the pulsar masses with best-fit values in the range 1.0-1.6 M{sub Sun }. The implications of the results presented here to our understanding of binary pulsar evolution are discussed. The updated parameters for the binary systems studied here, together with recently discovered similar systems, allowed us to update previous limits on the violation of the strong equivalence principle through the parameter |{Delta}| to 4.6 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -3} (95% confidence) and the violation of Lorentz invariance/momentum conservation through the parameter |{alpha}-hat3| to 5.5 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -20} (95% confidence).

  4. Parkes Radio Searches of Fermi Gamma-Ray Sources and Millisecond Pulsar Discoveries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Camilo, F.; Kerr, M.; Ray, P. S.; Ransom, S. M.; Sarkissian, J.; Cromartie, H. T.; Johnston, S.; Reynolds, J. E.; Wolff, M. T.; Freire, P. C. C.; Bhattacharyya, B.; Ferrara, E. C.; Keith, M.; Michelson, P. F.; Saz Parkinson, P. M.; Wood, K. S.

    2015-09-01

    In a search with the Parkes radio telescope of 56 unidentified Fermi-Large Area Telescope (LAT) gamma-ray sources, we have detected 11 millisecond pulsars (MSPs), 10 of them discoveries, of which five were reported by Kerr et al. We did not detect radio pulsations from six other pulsars now known in these sources. We describe the completed survey, which included multiple observations of many targets conducted to minimize the impact of interstellar scintillation, acceleration effects in binary systems, and eclipses. We consider that 23 of the 39 remaining sources may still be viable pulsar candidates. We present timing solutions and polarimetry for five of the MSPs and gamma-ray pulsations for PSR J1903-7051 (pulsations for five others were reported in the second Fermi-LAT catalog of gamma-ray pulsars). Two of the new MSPs are isolated and five are in \\gt 1 day circular orbits with 0.2-0.3 {M}⊙ presumed white dwarf companions. PSR J0955-6150, in a 24 day orbit with a ≈ 0.25 {M}⊙ companion but eccentricity of 0.11, belongs to a recently identified class of eccentric MSPs. PSR J1036-8317 is in an 8 hr binary with a \\gt 0.14 {M}⊙ companion that is probably a white dwarf. PSR J1946-5403 is in a 3 hr orbit with a \\gt 0.02 {M}⊙ companion with no evidence of radio eclipses.

  5. A massive neutron star in the millisecond pulsar PSR J2215+5135

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shahbaz, Tariq

    2016-07-01

    Binary evolution may increase neutron masses via accretion. Hence the most massive neutron stars (NSs) are expected to be located amongst the binary millisecond pulsars (MSPs) spun-up within X-ray binaries. Most MSPs are found with brown dwarf lookalikes or ˜0.2 M stars in systems called "black widows" and "redbacks", respectively, because these companions are ablated by the pulsar wind. These systems offer some advantages over white dwarf-pulsar binaries: they are typically brighter, they present strongly irradiated hemispheres, and they fill significant fractions of their Roche lobes. As a result, their optical light curves exhibit variability due to a combination of their ellipsoidal shape and irradiation, which can be modelled in order to determine orbital parameters such as the mass ratio and inclination. Combining these with optical spectroscopy and/or pulsar timing enables one to determine a reliable NS masses. Here we present the results of our detailed modelling of the optical lightcurves and radial velocity curves of J2215+5135, which allows us to determine various ystem parameters, including the NS mass.

  6. Discovery of a Highly Eccentric Binary Millisecond Pulsar in a Gamma-Ray-Detected Globular Cluster

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeCesar, Megan E.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Kaplan, D. L.; Fermi Large Area Telescope Collaboration

    2014-01-01

    We report on the Green Bank Telescope discovery of a highly eccentric binary millisecond pulsar (MSP) in NGC 6652, the first MSP to be detected in this globular cluster. The pulsar search was guided by the Fermi Large Area Telescope, which detected NGC 6652 at GeV energies, identifying the cluster as a likely host of a population of gamma-ray-emitting MSPs. Initial timing of the MSP yielded an eccentricity of ~0.95 and a minimum companion mass of 0.73 solar masses, assuming a neutron star mass of 1.4 solar masses. These results strongly indicate that the pulsar has undergone one or more companion exchanges in the dense stellar environment of the cluster, and that the current companion is a compact object, likely a massive white dwarf or a neutron star. Further timing of this system will result in a measurement of the post-Keplerian rate of periastron advance and therefore a direct measurement of the total system mass, allowing additional constraints to be placed on both the pulsar and companion masses. The timing solution will also be used to search for gamma-ray pulsations from the MSP.

  7. FORMATION OF BLACK WIDOWS AND REDBACKS—TWO DISTINCT POPULATIONS OF ECLIPSING BINARY MILLISECOND PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, Hai-Liang; Chen, Xuefei; Han, Zhanwen; Tauris, Thomas M.

    2013-09-20

    Eclipsing binary millisecond pulsars (MSPs; the so-called black widows and redbacks) can provide important information about accretion history, pulsar irradiation of their companion stars, and the evolutionary link between accreting X-ray pulsars and isolated MSPs. However, the formation of such systems is not well understood, nor the difference in progenitor evolution between the two populations of black widows and redbacks. Whereas both populations have orbital periods between 0.1 and 1.0 days, their companion masses differ by an order of magnitude. In this paper, we investigate the formation of these systems via the evolution of converging low-mass X-ray binaries by employing the MESA stellar evolution code. Our results confirm that one can explain the formation of most of these eclipsing binary MSPs using this scenario. More notably, we find that the determining factor for producing either black widows or redbacks is the efficiency of the irradiation process, such that the redbacks absorb a larger fraction of the emitted spin-down energy of the radio pulsar (resulting in more efficient mass loss via evaporation) compared to that of the black widow systems. We argue that geometric effects (beaming) are responsible for the strong bimodality of these two populations. Finally, we conclude that redback systems do not evolve into black widow systems with time.

  8. The Contribution of Millisecond Pulsars to the Local Electron / Positron Spectrum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Venter, Christo; Buesching, Ingo; Harding, Alice; Kopp, Andreas; Gonthier, Peter

    The high energies of gamma-ray photons (as well as the presence of lower-energy photons) coupled with the intense magnetic fields characterizing younger pulsars enable formation of electron-positron pair cascades which fills the pulsar magnetosphere with plasma and also feeds an outflowing particle wind that may create a surrounding pulsar wind nebula (PWN). Although this scenario was originally thought to be unique to the younger pulsar population, Fermi LAT demonstrated that the light curves of millisecond pulsars (MSPs) are generally very similar to those of younger pulsars, requiring copious pair production even for this older class with much lower surface magnetic fields and spin-down power. These pair cascades may thus be a primary source of Galactic electrons and positrons, and may present an astrophysical explanation for the observed enhancement in positron flux in the high-energy band. We investigate Galactic MSPs contribution to the flux of local cosmic-ray electrons and positrons. We use a population synthesis code to predict the source properties (number, position, and power) of the present-day Galactic MSPs, taking into account the latest Fermi observations to calibrate the model output. Next, we simulate pair cascade spectra from these MSPs using a model that invokes an offset-dipole magnetic field, as this increases the pair production rate relative to a standard dipole field geometry. The model source pair spectra may extend to several TeV, depending on pulsar properties, neutron star equation of state, and magnetic polar cap offset. Since MSPs are not surrounded by PWNe or supernova shells, we can assume that the pairs escape from the pulsar environment without energy loss and undergo losses only in the intergalactic medium. We lastly compute the spectrum of the transported electrons and positrons at Earth, following their diffusion and energy loss through the Galaxy. We will compare our results with the observed local interstellar spectrum and

  9. Superorbital Modulation and Orbital Parameters of the Eclipsing High-Mass X-ray Pulsar IGR J16493-4348

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pearlman, Aaron B.; Corbet, R.; Pottschmidt, K.

    2013-01-01

    Previous infrared studies of the X-ray pulsar IGR J16493-4348 classified the system as a supergiant high-mass X-ray binary (HMXB). A ~6.78 d orbital period was discovered from Swift Burst Alert Telescope (BAT) and Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) Proportional Counter Array (PCA) Galactic Bulge scan observations. A coherent signal at ~20.07 d was also found using the PCA and BAT instruments, suggestive of superorbital behavior within the system. Using well-sampled PCA archival pointed data (2.5-25 keV) spanning 9.5 d, we find strong evidence for a pulse period at ~1093 s from pulse arrival time analysis and the power spectrum of the light curve after removal of low frequency noise. We present an eclipse model for the folded PCA scan and BAT 66-month snapshot light curves, which constrains the system's behavior during orbital transitions. Pulse arrival times are derived using the PCA pointed light curve, and circular and eccentric orbital solutions are provided. A 14.0 ± 2.3 M⊙ mass function is determined, which further confirms the designation of IGR J16493-4348 as a supergiant HMXB.

  10. IMPLICATIONS OF BURST OSCILLATIONS FROM THE SLOWLY ROTATING ACCRETING PULSAR IGR J17480-2446 IN THE GLOBULAR CLUSTER TERZAN 5

    SciTech Connect

    Cavecchi, Y.; Patruno, A.; Haskell, B.; Watts, A. L.; Altamirano, D.; Wijnands, R.; Van der Klis, M.; Levin, Y.; Linares, M.

    2011-10-10

    The recently discovered accreting X-ray pulsar IGR J17480-2446 spins at a frequency of {approx}11 Hz. We show that Type I X-ray bursts from this source display oscillations at the same frequency as the stellar spin. IGR J17480-2446 is the first secure case of a slowly rotating neutron star (NS) which shows Type I burst oscillations (BOs), all other sources featuring such oscillations spin at hundreds of Hertz. This means that we can test BO models in a completely different regime. We explore the origin of Type I BOs in IGR J17480-2446 and conclude that they are not caused by global modes in the NS ocean. We also show that the Coriolis force is not able to confine an oscillation-producing hot spot on the stellar surface. The most likely scenario is that the BOs are produced by a hot spot confined by hydromagnetic stresses.

  11. The gamma-ray millisecond pulsar deathline, revisited. New velocity and distance measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guillemot, L.; Smith, D. A.; Laffon, H.; Janssen, G. H.; Cognard, I.; Theureau, G.; Desvignes, G.; Ferrara, E. C.; Ray, P. S.

    2016-03-01

    Context. Millisecond pulsars (MSPs) represent nearly half of the more than 160 currently known γ-ray pulsars detected by the Large Area Telescope on the Fermi satellite, and a third of all known MSPs are seen in γ rays. The least energetic γ-ray MSPs enable us to probe the so-called deathline for high-energy emission, i.e., the spin-down luminosity limit under which pulsars (PSRs) cease to produce detectable high-energy radiation. Characterizing the MSP luminosity distribution helps to determine their contribution to the Galactic diffuse γ-ray emission. Aims: Because of the Shklovskii effect, precise proper motion and distance measurements are key ingredients for determining the spin-down luminosities of MSPs accurately. Our aim is to obtain new measurements of these parameters for γ-ray MSPs when possible, and clarify the relationship between the γ-ray luminosity of pulsars and their spin-down luminosity. Detecting low spin-down luminosity pulsars in γ rays and characterizing their spin properties is also particularly interesting for constraining the deathline for high-energy emission. Methods: We made use of the high-quality pulsar timing data recorded at the Nançay Radio Telescope over several years to characterize the properties of a selection of MSPs. For one of the pulsars, the dataset was complemented with Westerbork Synthesis Radio Telescope observations. The rotation ephemerides derived from this analysis were also used to search the LAT data for new γ-ray MSPs. Results: For the MSPs considered in this study, we obtained new transverse proper motion measurements or updated the existing ones, and placed new distance constraints for some of them, with four new timing parallax measurements. We discovered significant GeV γ-ray signals from four MSPs, i.e., PSRs J0740+6620, J0931-1902, J1455-3330, and J1730-2304. The latter is now the least energetic γ-ray pulsar found to date. Despite the improved Ė and Lγ estimates, the relationship between these

  12. X-Ray and Near-infrared Observations of the Obscured Accreting Pulsar IGR J18179-1621

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nowak, M. A.; Paizis, A.; Rodriguez, J.; Chaty, S.; Del Santo, M.; Grinberg, V.; Wilms, J.; Ubertini, P.; Chini, R.

    2012-10-01

    IGR J18179-1621 is an obscured accreting X-ray pulsar discovered by INTEGRAL on 2012 February 29. We report on our 20 ks Chandra-High Energy Transmission Gratings Spectrometer observation of the source performed on 2012 March 17, on two short contemporaneous Swift observations, and on our two near-infrared (Ks , Hn , and Jn ) observations performed on 2012 March 13 and 26. We determine the most accurate X-ray position of IGR J18179-1621, αJ2000 = 18h17m52.s18, δJ2000 = -16°21'31farcs68 (90% uncertainty of 0farcs6). A strong periodic variability at 11.82 s is clearly detected in the Chandra data, confirming the pulsating nature of the source, with the light-curve softening at the pulse peak. The quasi-simultaneous Chandra-Swift spectra of IGR J18179-1621 can be well fit by a heavily absorbed hard power law (N H = 2.2 ± 0.3 × 1023 cm-2 and photon index Γ = 0.4 ± 0.1) with an average absorbed 2-8 keV flux of 1.4 × 10-11 erg cm-2 s-1. At the Chandra-based position, a source is detected in our near-infrared (NIR) maps with Ks = 13.14 ± 0.04 mag, Hn = 16 ± 0.1 mag, and no Jn -band counterpart down to ~18 mag. The NIR source, compatible with 2MASS J18175218-1621316, shows no variability between 2012 March 13 and 26. Searches of the UKIDSS database show similar NIR flux levels at epochs six months prior to and after a 2007 February 11 archival Chandra observation where the source's X-ray flux was at least 87 times fainter. In many ways IGR J18179-1621 is unusual: its combination of a several week long outburst (without evidence of repeated outbursts in the historical record), high absorption column (a large fraction of which is likely local to the system), and 11.82 s period does not fit neatly into existing X-ray binary categories.

  13. Discovery of near-ultraviolet counterparts to millisecond pulsars in the globular cluster 47 Tucanae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rivera-Sandoval, L. E.; van den Berg, M.; Heinke, C. O.; Cohn, H. N.; Lugger, P. M.; Freire, P.; Anderson, J.; Serenelli, A. M.; Althaus, L. G.; Cool, A. M.; Grindlay, J. E.; Edmonds, P. D.; Wijnands, R.; Ivanova, N.

    2015-11-01

    We report the discovery of the likely white dwarf companions to radio millisecond pulsars 47 Tuc Q and 47 Tuc S in the globular cluster 47 Tucanae. These blue stars were found in near-ultraviolet images from the Hubble Space Telescope for which we derived accurate absolute astrometry, and are located at positions consistent with the radio coordinates to within 0.016 arcsec (0.2σ). We present near-ultraviolet and optical colours for the previously identified companion to millisecond pulsar 47 Tuc U, and we unambiguously confirm the tentative prior identifications of the optical counterparts to 47 Tuc T and 47 Tuc Y. For the latter, we present its radio-timing solution for the first time. We find that all five near-ultraviolet counterparts have U300 - B390 colours that are consistent with He white dwarf cooling models for masses ˜0.16-0.3 M⊙ and cooling ages within ˜0.1-6 Gyr. The Hα - R625 colours of 47 Tuc U and 47 Tuc T indicate the presence of a strong Hα absorption line, as expected for white dwarfs with an H envelope.

  14. Thermonuclear X-ray bursts from the 401-Hz accreting pulsar IGR J17498-2921: indication of burning in confined regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chakraborty, Manoneeta; Bhattacharyya, Sudip

    2012-05-01

    We use the 2011 Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) Proportional Counter Array (PCA) data of the 401-Hz accreting pulsar and burster IGR J17498-2921 to perform timing analysis and time-resolved spectroscopy of 12 thermonuclear X-ray bursts. We confirm previously reported burst oscillations from this source with a much higher significance (8.8σ). We note that the bursts can be divided into three groups: big photospheric radius expansion (PRE) bursts are about 10 times more luminous than medium bursts, while the latter are about 10 times more luminous than small bursts. The PCA field of view of these observations contains several known bursters, and hence some of the observed bursts might not be from IGR J17498-2921. The oscillations during big bursts at the known pulsar frequency show that these bursts were definitely from IGR J17498-2921. We find that at least several of the other bursts were also likely originated from IGR J17498-2921. Spectral analysis reveals that the luminosity differences among various bursts are primarily due to differences in normalizations, and not temperatures, even when we consider the effects of colour factor. This shows burning on a fraction of the stellar surface for those small and medium bursts, which originated from IGR J17498-2921. The low values of the upper limits of burst oscillation amplitude for these bursts suggest a small angle between the spin axis and the magnetic axis. We find indications of the PRE nature of a medium burst, which likely originated from IGR J17498-2921. If true, then, to the best of our knowledge, this is the first time that two PRE bursts with a peak count rate ratio of as high as ≈12 have been detected from the same source.

  15. Probing Millisecond Pulsar Emission Geometry Using Light Curves From the Fermi Large Area Telescope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Venter, Christo; Harding, Alice; Guillemot, L.

    2009-01-01

    An interesting new high-energy pulsar sub-population is emerging following early discoveries of gamma-ray millisecond pulsars (MSPs) by the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT). We present results from 3D emission modeling, including the Special Relativistic effects of aberration and time-of-flight delays and also rotational sweepback of 13-field lines, in the geometric context of polar cap (PC), slot gap (SG), outer gap (OG), and two-pole caustic (TPC) pulsar models. In contrast to the general belief that these very old, rapidly-rotating neutron stars (NSs) should have largely pair-starved magnetospheres due to the absence of significant pair production, we find that most of the light curves are best fit by SG and OG models, which indicates the presence of narrow accelerating gaps limited by robust pair production -- even in these pulsars with very low spin-down luminosities. The gamma-ray pulse shapes and relative phase lags with respect to the radio pulses point to high-altitude emission being dominant for all geometries. We also find exclusive differentiation of the current gamma-ray MSP population into two MSP sub-classes: light curve shapes and lags across wavebands impose either pair-starved PC (PSPC) or SG / OG-type geometries. In the first case, the radio pulse has a small lag with respect to the single gamma-ray pulse, while the (first) gamma-ray peak usually trails the radio by a large phase offset in the latter case. Finally, we find that the flux correction factor as a function of magnetic inclination and observer angles is typically of order unity for all models. Our calculation of light curves and flux correction factor f(_, _, P) for the case of MSPs is therefore complementary to the "ATLAS paper" of Watters et al. for younger pulsars.

  16. THE PECULIAR EVOLUTIONARY HISTORY OF IGR J17480-2446 IN TERZAN 5

    SciTech Connect

    Patruno, Alessandro; Alpar, M. Ali; Van der Klis, Michiel; Van den Heuvel, Ed P. J.

    2012-06-10

    The low-mass X-ray binary (LMXB) IGR J17480-2446 in the globular cluster Terzan 5 harbors an 11 Hz accreting pulsar. This is the first object discovered in a globular cluster with a pulsar spinning at such low rate. The accreting pulsar is anomalous because its characteristics are very different from the other five known slow accreting pulsars in galactic LMXBs. Many features of the 11 Hz pulsar are instead very similar to those of accreting millisecond pulsars, spinning at frequencies >100 Hz. Understanding this anomaly is valuable because IGR J17480-2446 could be the only accreting pulsar discovered so far which is in the process of becoming an accreting millisecond pulsar. We first verify that the neutron star (NS) in IGR J17480-2446 is indeed spinning up by carefully analyzing X-ray data with coherent timing techniques that account for the presence of timing noise. We then study the present Roche lobe overflow epoch and the two previous spin-down epochs dominated by magneto-dipole radiation and stellar wind accretion. We find that IGR J17480-2446 is very likely a mildly recycled pulsar and suggest that it has started a spin-up phase in an exceptionally recent time, which has lasted less than a few 10{sup 7} yr. We also find that the total age of the binary is surprisingly low ({approx}< 10{sup 8} yr) when considering typical parameters for the newborn NS and propose different scenarios to explain this anomaly.

  17. TWO MILLISECOND PULSARS DISCOVERED BY THE PALFA SURVEY AND A SHAPIRO DELAY MEASUREMENT

    SciTech Connect

    Deneva, J. S.; Camilo, F.; Freire, P. C. C.; Champion, D. J.; Desvignes, G.; Cordes, J. M.; Brazier, A.; Chatterjee, S.; Lyne, A. G.; Ransom, S. M.; Cognard, I.; Nice, D. J.; Stairs, I. H.; Allen, B.; Bhat, N. D. R.; Bogdanov, S.; Crawford, F.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Jenet, F. A.; Kaspi, V. M.; and others

    2012-09-20

    We present two millisecond pulsar discoveries from the PALFA survey of the Galactic plane with the Arecibo telescope. PSR J1955+2527 is an isolated pulsar with a period of 4.87 ms, and PSR J1949+3106 has a period of 13.14 ms and is in a 1.9 day binary system with a massive companion. Their timing solutions, based on 4 years of timing measurements with the Arecibo, Green Bank, Nancay, and Jodrell Bank telescopes, allow precise determination of spin and astrometric parameters, including precise determinations of their proper motions. For PSR J1949+3106, we can clearly detect the Shapiro delay. From this we measure the pulsar mass to be 1.47{sup +0.43}{sub -0.31} M{sub Sun }, the companion mass to be 0.85{sup +0.14}{sub -0.11} M{sub Sun }, and the orbital inclination to be i = 79.9{sup -1.9}{sub +1.6} deg, where uncertainties correspond to {+-}1{sigma} confidence levels. With continued timing, we expect to also be able to detect the advance of periastron for the J1949+3106 system. This effect, combined with the Shapiro delay, will eventually provide very precise mass measurements for this system and a test of general relativity.

  18. Population synthesis of radio and gamma-ray millisecond pulsars using Markov Chain Monte Carlo techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonthier, Peter L.; Koh, Yew-Meng; Kust Harding, Alice

    2016-04-01

    We present preliminary results of a new population synthesis of millisecond pulsars (MSP) from the Galactic disk using Markov Chain Monte Carlo techniques to better understand the model parameter space. We include empirical radio and gamma-ray luminosity models that are dependent on the pulsar period and period derivative with freely varying exponents. The magnitudes of the model luminosities are adjusted to reproduce the number of MSPs detected by a group of thirteen radio surveys as well as the MSP birth rate in the Galaxy and the number of MSPs detected by Fermi. We explore various high-energy emission geometries like the slot gap, outer gap, two pole caustic and pair starved polar cap models. The parameters associated with the birth distributions for the mass accretion rate, magnetic field, and period distributions are well constrained. With the set of four free parameters, we employ Markov Chain Monte Carlo simulations to explore the model parameter space. We present preliminary comparisons of the simulated and detected distributions of radio and gamma-ray pulsar characteristics. We estimate the contribution of MSPs to the diffuse gamma-ray background with a special focus on the Galactic Center.We express our gratitude for the generous support of the National Science Foundation (RUI: AST-1009731), Fermi Guest Investigator Program and the NASA Astrophysics Theory and Fundamental Program (NNX09AQ71G).

  19. Electron-positron heating and the eclipsing millisecond pulsar PSR 1957 + 20

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krolik, Julian H.; Sincell, Mark W.

    1990-01-01

    The companion in the eclipsing millisecond PSR 1957 + 20 appears to be strongly heated by the pulsar and may also be rapidly losing mass due to that heating. A new mechanism is presented by which the heating may be accomplished: diffusion of mildly relativistic electron-positron pairs from the pulsar's relativistic wind through a thermal wind issuing from the companion. Wave-particle scattering regulates the depth at which the pairs deposit their energy; requirements of self-consistency place bounds on the wave spectrum and pair distribution function. If the pairs carry over about 10 percent of the pulsar spin-down luminosity, and the companion's heavy element abundance is subsolar, the heating rate can be adequate to drive a wind with sufficient momentum flux to explain the eclipse geometry. Annihilation photons then heat the companion beneath its photosphere and supply a significant part of the power for the optical luminosity. This model also suggests that the eclipse duration decreases sharply above a critical photon frequency.

  20. Heating Before Eating: X-Ray Observations of Redback Millisecond Pulsar Systems in the Ablation State

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roberts, Mallory; McLaughlin, Maura; Ray, Paul S.; Ransom, Scott M.; Hessels, Jason

    2015-01-01

    Redbacks are eclipsing millisecond radio pulsars in close orbits around companions which are non-degenerate and nearly Roche-lobe filling. Several have been observed to transition between a state where the radio pulsar is visible and there is X-ray emission from a shock between the pulsar wind and the ablated material off of the companion, and a state where there appears to be an accretion disk and the radio pulsations are not visible. Here we present X-Ray studies of two recently discovered systems. A Chandra observation of PSR J1628-3205 over its entire 5 hour orbit with Chandra shows little evidence for X-Ray variability. An XMM-Newton observation of PSR J2129-0429 over its 15.2 hour orbit shows strong orbital variability with an intriguing two peaked light curve. We compare these systems' X-Ray properties to other redbacks and comment on the differences between their properities and those of black widows.

  1. THE OPTICAL COMPANION TO THE BINARY MILLISECOND PULSAR J1824-2452H IN THE GLOBULAR CLUSTER M28

    SciTech Connect

    Pallanca, C.; Dalessandro, E.; Ferraro, F. R.; Lanzoni, B.; Rood, R. T.; Possenti, A.; D'Amico, N.; Freire, P. C.; Stairs, I.; Begin, S.; Ransom, S. M.

    2010-12-10

    We report on the optical identification of the companion star to the eclipsing millisecond pulsar (MSP) PSR J1824-2452H in the galactic globular cluster M28 (NGC 6626). This star is at only 0.''2 from the nominal position of the pulsar and it shows optical variability ({approx}0.25 mag) that nicely correlates with the pulsar orbital period. It is located on the blue side of the cluster main sequence, {approx}1.5 mag fainter than the turnoff point. The observed light curve shows two distinct and asymmetric minima, suggesting that the companion star is suffering tidal distortion from the pulsar. This discovery increases the number of non-degenerate MSP companions optically identified so far in globular clusters (four out of seven), suggesting that these systems could be a common outcome of the pulsar recycling process, at least in dense environments where they can be originated by exchange interactions.

  2. Discovery of the Millisecond Pulsar PSR J2043+1711 in a Fermi Source with the Nancay Radio Telescope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guillemot, L.; Freire, P. C. C.; Cognard, I.; Johnson, T. J.; Takahashi, Y.; Kataoka, J.; Desvignes, G.; Camilo, F.; Ferrara, E. C.; Harding, A. K.; Janssen, G. H.; Keith, M.; Kerr, M.; Kramer, M.; Parent, D.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Saz Parkinson, P. M.; Smith, D. A.; Stappers, W.; Theureau, G.

    2012-01-01

    We report the discovery of the millisecond pulsar PSR J2043+1711 in a search of a Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) source with no known associations, with the Nancay Radio Telescope. The new pulsar, confirmed with the Green Bank Telescope, has a spin period of 2.38 ms, is relatively nearby (d approx. < 2 kpc) and is in a 1.48-d orbit around a low-mass companion, probably an He-type white dwarf. Using an ephemeris based on Arecibo, Nancay and Westerbork timing measurements, pulsed gamma-ray emission was detected in the data recorded by the Fermi LAT. The gamma-ray light curve and spectral properties are typical of other gamma-ray millisecond pulsars seen with Fermi. X-ray observations of the pulsar with Suzaku and the Swift X-ray Telescope yielded no detection. At 1.4 GHz, we observe strong flux density variations because of interstellar diffractive scintillation; however, a sharp peak can be observed at this frequency during bright scintillation states. At 327 MHz, the pulsar is detected with a much higher signal-to-noise ratio and its flux density is far more steady. However, at that frequency the Arecibo instrumentation cannot yet fully resolve the pulse profile. Despite that, our pulse time-of-arrival measurements have a post-fit residual rms of 2 micro s. This and the expected stability of this system have made PSR J2043+1711 one of the first new Fermi-selected millisecond pulsars to be added to pulsar gravitational wave timing arrays. It has also allowed a significant measurement of relativistic delays in the times of arrival of the pulses due to the curvature of space-time near the companion, but not yet with enough precision to derive useful masses for the pulsar and the companion. Nevertheless, a mass for the pulsar between 1.7 and 2.0 solar Mass can be derived if a standard millisecond pulsar formation model is assumed. In this paper, we also present a comprehensive summary of pulsar searches in Fermi LAT sources with the Nancay Radio Telescope to date.

  3. Quiescent emission in accreting neutron star transients: comparing Cen X-4 and the transitional millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chakrabarty, Deepto

    2016-07-01

    Many accreting neutron star in low-mass X-ray binaries are transient X-ray sources, undergoing bright X-ray outbursts lasting days to weeks alternating with long quiescent intervals lasting months to years. The origin of their faint quiescent power-law X-ray emission has been a longstanding question, with theorists primarily debating between Comptonization and synchrotron shock models. However, recent NuSTAR observations of the nearby source Cen X-4 unexpectedly revealed a bremsstrahlung origin for the quiescent hard X-ray component. I will discuss the implications of this result, and will also compare Cen X-4 with the "transitional" millisecond pulsars, which exhibit markedly different behavior at comparable X-ray luminosities.

  4. The binary millisecond pulsar PSR J1023+0038 during its accretion state - I. Optical variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shahbaz, T.; Linares, M.; Nevado, S. P.; Rodríguez-Gil, P.; Casares, J.; Dhillon, V. S.; Marsh, T. R.; Littlefair, S.; Leckngam, A.; Poshyachinda, S.

    2015-11-01

    We present time-resolved optical photometry of the binary millisecond `redback' pulsar PSR J1023+0038 (=AY Sex) during its low-mass X-ray binary phase. The light curves taken between 2014 January and April show an underlying sinusoidal modulation due to the irradiated secondary star and accretion disc. We also observe superimposed rapid flaring on time-scales as short as ˜20 s with amplitudes of ˜0.1-0.5 mag and additional large flare events on time-scales of ˜5-60 min with amplitudes of ˜0.5-1.0 mag. The power density spectrum of the optical flare light curves is dominated by a red-noise component, typical of aperiodic activity in X-ray binaries. Simultaneous X-ray and UV observations by the Swift satellite reveal strong correlations that are consistent with X-ray reprocessing of the UV light, most likely in the outer regions of the accretion disc. On some nights we also observe sharp-edged, rectangular, flat-bottomed dips randomly distributed in orbital phase, with a median duration of ˜250 s and a median ingress/egress time of ˜20 s. These rectangular dips are similar to the mode-switching behaviour between disc `active' and `passive' luminosity states, observed in the X-ray light curves of other redback millisecond pulsars. This is the first time that the optical analogue of the X-ray mode-switching has been observed. The properties of the passive- and active-state light curves can be explained in terms of clumpy accretion from a trapped inner accretion disc near the corotation radius, resulting in rectangular, flat-bottomed optical and X-ray light curves.

  5. RADIO DETECTION OF THE FERMI-LAT BLIND SEARCH MILLISECOND PULSAR J1311-3430

    SciTech Connect

    Ray, P. S.; Wood, K. S.; Ransom, S. M.; Cheung, C. C.; Giroletti, M.; Cognard, I.; Camilo, F.; Bhattacharyya, B.; Roy, J.; Romani, R. W.; Kerr, M.; Ferrara, E. C.; Guillemot, L.; Kramer, M.; Johnston, S.; Keith, M.; Pletsch, H. J.; Saz Parkinson, P. M.

    2013-01-20

    We report the detection of radio emission from PSR J1311-3430, the first millisecond pulsar (MSP) discovered in a blind search of Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) gamma-ray data. We detected radio pulsations at 2 GHz, visible for <10% of {approx}4.5 hr of observations using the Green Bank Telescope (GBT). Observations at 5 GHz with the GBT and at several lower frequencies with Parkes, Nancay, and the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope resulted in non-detections. We also report the faint detection of a steep spectrum continuum radio source (0.1 mJy at 5 GHz) in interferometric imaging observations with the Jansky Very Large Array. These detections demonstrate that PSR J1311-3430 is not radio quiet and provide additional evidence that radio-quiet MSPs are rare. The radio dispersion measure of 37.8 pc cm{sup -3} provides a distance estimate of 1.4 kpc for the system, yielding a gamma-ray efficiency of 30%, typical of LAT-detected MSPs. We see apparent excess delay in the radio pulses as the pulsar appears from eclipse and we speculate on possible mechanisms for the non-detections of the pulse at other orbital phases and observing frequencies.

  6. Multi-wavelength modeling of globular clusters–the millisecond pulsar scenario

    SciTech Connect

    Kopp, A.; Venter, C.; Büsching, I.; De Jager, O. C.

    2013-12-20

    The potentially large number of millisecond pulsars (MSPs) in globular cluster (GC) cores makes these parent objects ideal laboratories for studying the collective properties of an ensemble of MSPs. Such a population is expected to radiate several spectral components in the radio through γ-ray waveband. First, pulsed emission is expected via curvature and synchrotron radiation (CR and SR) and possibly even via inverse Compton (IC) scattering inside the pulsar magnetospheres. Second, unpulsed emission should transpire through the continuous injection of relativistic leptons by the MSPs into the ambient region, which in turn produce SR and IC emission when they encounter the cluster magnetic field, as well as several background photon components. In this paper we continue to develop the MSP scenario for explaining the multi-wavelength properties of GCs by considering the entire modeling chain, including the full transport equation, refined emissivities of stellar and Galactic background photons, integration of the flux along the line of sight, and comparison with observations. As an illustration, we apply the model to Terzan 5, where we can reasonably fit both the (line-of-sight-integrated) X-ray surface flux and spectral energy density data, using the first to constrain the leptonic diffusion coefficient within the GC. We lastly discuss possible future extensions to and applications of this maturing model.

  7. Formation of Millisecond Pulsars with Heavy White Dwarf Companions: Extreme Mass Transfer on Subthermal Timescales.

    PubMed

    Tauris; van Den Heuvel EP; Savonije

    2000-02-20

    We have performed detailed numerical calculations of the nonconservative evolution of close X-ray binary systems with intermediate-mass (2.0-6.0 M middle dot in circle) donor stars and a 1.3 M middle dot in circle accreting neutron star. We calculated the thermal response of the donor star to mass loss in order to determine its stability and follow the evolution of the mass transfer. Under the assumption of the "isotropic reemission model," we demonstrate that in many cases it is possible for the binary to prevent a spiral-in and survive a highly super-Eddington mass transfer phase (1millisecond pulsars with heavy CO white dwarfs and relatively short orbital periods (3-50 days). However, we conclude that to produce a binary pulsar with a O-Ne-Mg white dwarf or Porb approximately 1 day (e.g., PSR B0655+64) the above scenario does not work, and a spiral-in phase is still considered the most plausible scenario for the formation of such a system. PMID:10655173

  8. Evidence of Fast Magnetic Field Evolution in an Accreting Millisecond Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patruno, A.

    2012-07-01

    The large majority of neutron stars (NSs) in low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs) have never shown detectable pulsations despite several decades of intense monitoring. The reason for this remains an unsolved problem that hampers our ability to measure the spin frequency of most accreting NSs. The accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar (AMXP) HETE J1900.1-2455 is an intermittent pulsar that exhibited pulsations at about 377 Hz for the first two months and then turned into a nonpulsating source. Understanding why this happened might help us to understand why most LMXBs do not pulsate. We present a seven-year coherent timing analysis of data taken with the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer. We discover new sporadic pulsations that are detected on a baseline of about 2.5 years. We find that the pulse phases anti-correlate with the X-ray flux as previously discovered in other AMXPs. We place stringent upper limits of 0.05% rms on the pulsed fraction when pulsations are not detected and identify an enigmatic pulse phase drift of ~180° in coincidence with the first disappearance of pulsations. Thanks to the new pulsations we measure a long term spin frequency derivative whose strength decays exponentially with time. We interpret this phenomenon as evidence of magnetic field burial.

  9. Radio Detection of the Fermi-LAT Blind Search Millisecond Pulsar J1311-3430

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ray, P. S.; Ransom, S. M.; Cheung, C. C.; Giroletti, M.; Cognard, I.; Camilo, F.; Bhattacharyya, B.; Roy, J.; Romani, R. W.; Ferrara, E. C.; Guillemot, L.; Johnston, S.; Keith, M.; Kerr, M.; Kramer, M.; Pletsch, H. J.; Parkinson, P. M. Saz

    2013-01-01

    We report the detection of radio emission from PSR J1311.3430, the first millisecond pulsar (MSP) discovered in a blind search of Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) gamma-ray data. We detected radio pulsations at 2 GHz, visible for less than 10% of approximately 4.5 hr of observations using the Green Bank Telescope (GBT). Observations at 5 GHz with the GBT and at several lower frequencies with Parkes, Nan cay, and the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope resulted in non-detections. We also report the faint detection of a steep spectrum continuum radio source (0.1 mJy at 5 GHz) in interferometric imaging observations with the Jansky Very Large Array. These detections demonstrate that PSR J1311.3430 is not radio quiet and provide additional evidence that radio-quiet MSPs are rare. The radio dispersion measure of 37.8 pc cm(exp -3) provides a distance estimate of 1.4 kpc for the system, yielding a gamma-ray efficiency of 30%, typical of LAT-detected MSPs. We see apparent excess delay in the radio pulses as the pulsar appears from eclipse and we speculate on possible mechanisms for the non-detections of the pulse at other orbital phases and observing frequencies.

  10. Einstein@Home Discovery of a PALFA Millisecond Pulsar in an Eccentric Binary Orbit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knispel, B.; Lyne, A. G.; Stappers, B. W.; Freire, P. C. C.; Lazarus, P.; Allen, B.; Aulbert, C.; Bock, O.; Bogdanov, S.; Brazier, A.; Camilo, F.; Cardoso, F.; Chatterjee, S.; Cordes, J. M.; Crawford, F.; Deneva, J. S.; Eggenstein, H.-B.; Fehrmann, H.; Ferdman, R.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Jenet, F. A.; Karako-Argaman, C.; Kaspi, V. M.; van Leeuwen, J.; Lorimer, D. R.; Lynch, R.; Machenschalk, B.; Madsen, E.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Patel, C.; Ransom, S. M.; Scholz, P.; Siemens, X.; Spitler, L. G.; Stairs, I. H.; Stovall, K.; Swiggum, J. K.; Venkataraman, A.; Wharton, R. S.; Zhu, W. W.

    2015-06-01

    We report the discovery of the millisecond pulsar (MSP) PSR J1950+2414 (P = 4.3 ms) in a binary system with an eccentric (e = 0.08) 22 day orbit in Pulsar Arecibo L-band Feed Array survey observations with the Arecibo telescope. Its companion star has a median mass of 0.3 M⊙ and is most likely a white dwarf (WD). Fully recycled MSPs like this one are thought to be old neutron stars spun-up by mass transfer from a companion star. This process should circularize the orbit, as is observed for the vast majority of binary MSPs, which predominantly have orbital eccentricities e < 0.001. However, four recently discovered binary MSPs have orbits with 0. 027 < e < 0.44; PSR J1950+2414 is the fifth such system to be discovered. The upper limits for its intrinsic spin period derivative and inferred surface magnetic field strength are comparable to those of the general MSP population. The large eccentricities are incompatible with the predictions of the standard recycling scenario: something unusual happened during their evolution. Proposed scenarios are (a) initial evolution of the pulsar in a triple system which became dynamically unstable, (b) origin in an exchange encounter in an environment with high stellar density, (c) rotationally delayed accretion-induced collapse of a super-Chandrasekhar WD, and (d) dynamical interaction of the binary with a circumbinary disk. We compare the properties of all five known eccentric MSPs with the predictions of these formation channels. Future measurements of the masses and proper motion might allow us to firmly exclude some of the proposed formation scenarios.

  11. X-RAY AND GAMMA-RAY EMISSIONS FROM ROTATION POWERED MILLISECOND PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Takata, J.; Cheng, K. S.; Taam, Ronald E. E-mail: hrspksc@hkucc.hku.hk

    2012-01-20

    The Fermi Large Area Telescope has revealed that rotation powered millisecond pulsars (MSPs) are a major contributor to the Galactic {gamma}-ray source population. Such pulsars may also be important in modeling the quiescent state of several low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs), where optical observations of the companion star suggest the possible existence of rotation powered MSPs. To understand the observational properties of the different evolutionary stages of MSPs, the X-ray and {gamma}-ray emissions associated with the outer gap model are investigated. For rotation powered MSPs, the size of the outer gap and the properties of the high-energy emission are controlled by either the photon-photon pair-creation process or magnetic pair-creation process near the surface. For these pulsars, we find that the outer gap model controlled by the magnetic pair-creation process is preferable in explaining the possible correlations between the {gamma}-ray luminosity or non-thermal X-ray luminosity versus the spin-down power. For the accreting MSPs in quiescent LMXBs, the thermal X-ray emission at the neutron star (NS) surface resulting from deep crustal heating can control the conditions in the outer gap. We argue that the optical modulation observed in the quiescent state of several LMXBs originates from the irradiation of the donor star by {gamma}-rays from the outer gap. In these systems, the irradiation luminosity required for the optical modulation of the source such as SAX J1808.4-3658 can be achieved for a NS of high mass. Finally, we discuss the high-energy emission associated with an intra-binary shock in black widow systems, e.g., PSR B1957+20.

  12. Keck Spectroscopy of Millisecond Pulsar J2215+5135: A Moderate-MNS, High-inclination Binary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Romani, Roger W.; Graham, Melissa L.; Filippenko, Alexei V.; Kerr, Matthew

    2015-08-01

    We present Keck spectroscopic measurements of the millisecond pulsar binary J2215+5135. These data indicate a neutron-star (NS) mass {M}{NS}=1.6 {M}⊙ , much less than previously estimated. The pulsar heats the companion face to {T}D≈ 9000 K; the large heating efficiency may be mediated by the intrabinary shock dominating the X-ray light curve. At the best-fit inclination i = 88.°8, the pulsar should be eclipsed. We find weak evidence for such eclipses in the pulsed gamma-rays; an improved radio ephemeris allows use of up to five times more Fermi-Large Area Telescope gamma-ray photons for a definitive test of this picture. If confirmed, the gamma-ray eclipse provides a novel probe of the dense companion wind and the pulsar magnetosphere.

  13. The noise properties of 42 millisecond pulsars from the European Pulsar Timing Array and their impact on gravitational-wave searches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caballero, R. N.; Lee, K. J.; Lentati, L.; Desvignes, G.; Champion, D. J.; Verbiest, J. P. W.; Janssen, G. H.; Stappers, B. W.; Kramer, M.; Lazarus, P.; Possenti, A.; Tiburzi, C.; Perrodin, D.; Osłowski, S.; Babak, S.; Bassa, C. G.; Brem, P.; Burgay, M.; Cognard, I.; Gair, J. R.; Graikou, E.; Guillemot, L.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Karuppusamy, R.; Lassus, A.; Liu, K.; McKee, J.; Mingarelli, C. M. F.; Petiteau, A.; Purver, M. B.; Rosado, P. A.; Sanidas, S.; Sesana, A.; Shaifullah, G.; Smits, R.; Taylor, S. R.; Theureau, G.; van Haasteren, R.; Vecchio, A.

    2016-04-01

    The sensitivity of Pulsar Timing Arrays to gravitational waves (GWs) depends on the noise present in the individual pulsar timing data. Noise may be either intrinsic or extrinsic to the pulsar. Intrinsic sources of noise will include rotational instabilities, for example. Extrinsic sources of noise include contributions from physical processes which are not sufficiently well modelled, for example, dispersion and scattering effects, analysis errors and instrumental instabilities. We present the results from a noise analysis for 42 millisecond pulsars (MSPs) observed with the European Pulsar Timing Array. For characterizing the low-frequency, stochastic and achromatic noise component, or `timing noise', we employ two methods, based on Bayesian and frequentist statistics. For 25 MSPs, we achieve statistically significant measurements of their timing noise parameters and find that the two methods give consistent results. For the remaining 17 MSPs, we place upper limits on the timing noise amplitude at the 95 per cent confidence level. We additionally place an upper limit on the contribution to the pulsar noise budget from errors in the reference terrestrial time standards (below 1 per cent), and we find evidence for a noise component which is present only in the data of one of the four used telescopes. Finally, we estimate that the timing noise of individual pulsars reduces the sensitivity of this data set to an isotropic, stochastic GW background by a factor of >9.1 and by a factor of >2.3 for continuous GWs from resolvable, inspiralling supermassive black hole binaries with circular orbits.

  14. NuSTAR Discovery of a Cyclotron Line in the Accreting X-Ray Pulsar IGR J16393-4643

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bodaghee, Arash; Tomsick, John A.; Fornasini, Francesca M.; Krivonos, Roman; Stern, Daniel; Mori, Kaya; Rahoui, Farid; Boggs, Steven E.; Christensen, Finn E.; Craig, William W.; Hailey, Charles J.; Harrison, Fiona A.; Zhang, William W.

    2016-06-01

    The high-mass X-ray binary and accreting X-ray pulsar IGR J16393-4643 was observed by the Nuclear Spectroscope Telescope Array in the 3–79 keV energy band for a net exposure time of 50 ks. We present the results of this observation which enabled the discovery of a cyclotron resonant scattering feature with a centroid energy of {29.3}-1.3+1.1 keV. This allowed us to measure the magnetic field strength of the neutron star for the first time: B = (2.5 ± 0.1) × 1012 G. The known pulsation period is now observed at 904.0 ± 0.1 s. Since 2006, the neutron star has undergone a long-term spin-up trend at a rate of \\dot{P}=-2× {10}-8 s s‑1 (‑0.6 s per year, or a frequency derivative of \\dot{ν }=3× {10}-14 Hz s‑1). In the power density spectrum, a break appears at the pulse frequency which separates the zero slope at low frequency from the steeper slope at high frequency. This addition of angular momentum to the neutron star could be due to the accretion of a quasi-spherical wind, or it could be caused by the transient appearance of a prograde accretion disk that is nearly in corotation with the neutron star whose magnetospheric radius is around 2 × 108 cm.

  15. A FAST X-RAY DISK WIND IN THE TRANSIENT PULSAR IGR J17480-2446 IN TERZAN 5

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, Jon M.; Maitra, Dipankar; Cackett, Edward M.; Bhattacharyya, Sudip; Strohmayer, Tod E.

    2011-04-10

    Accretion disk winds are revealed in Chandra gratings spectra of black holes. The winds are hot and highly ionized (typically composed of He-like and H-like charge states) and show modest blueshifts. Similar line spectra are sometimes seen in 'dipping' low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs), which are likely viewed edge-on; however, that absorption is tied to structures in the outer disk, and blueshifts are not typically observed. Here, we report the detection of blueshifted He-like Fe XXV (3100 {+-} 400 km s{sup -1}) and H-like Fe XXVI (1000 {+-} 200 km s{sup -1}) absorption lines in a Chandra/HETG spectrum of the transient pulsar and LMXB IGR J17480-2446 in Terzan 5. These features indicate a disk wind with at least superficial similarities to those observed in stellar-mass black holes. The wind does not vary strongly with numerous weak X-ray bursts or flares. A broad Fe K emission line is detected in the spectrum, and fits with different line models suggest that the inner accretion disk in this system may be truncated. If the stellar magnetic field truncates the disk, a field strength of B= (0.7-4.0)x10{sup 9} G is implied, which is in line with estimates based on X-ray timing techniques. We discuss our findings in the context of accretion flows onto neutron stars and stellar-mass black holes.

  16. DISCOVERY OF THE OPTICAL/ULTRAVIOLET/GAMMA-RAY COUNTERPART TO THE ECLIPSING MILLISECOND PULSAR J1816+4510

    SciTech Connect

    Kaplan, D. L.; Kotulla, R.; Biwer, C. M.; Day, D. F.; Stovall, K.; Dartez, L.; Ford, A. J.; Garcia, A.; Jenet, F. A.; Ransom, S. M.; Roberts, M. S. E.; Archibald, A. M.; Karako, C.; Kaspi, V. M.; Lynch, R. S.; Boyles, J.; Lorimer, D. R.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Kondratiev, V. I.; and others

    2012-07-10

    The energetic, eclipsing millisecond pulsar J1816+4510 was recently discovered in a low-frequency radio survey with the Green Bank Telescope. With an orbital period of 8.7 hr and a minimum companion mass of 0.16 M{sub Sun }, it appears to belong to an increasingly important class of pulsars that are ablating their low-mass companions. We report the discovery of the {gamma}-ray counterpart to this pulsar and present a likely optical/ultraviolet counterpart as well. Using the radio ephemeris, we detect pulsations in the unclassified {gamma}-ray source 2FGL J1816.5+4511, implying an efficiency of {approx}25% in converting the pulsar's spin-down luminosity into {gamma}-rays and adding PSR J1816+4510 to the large number of millisecond pulsars detected by Fermi. The likely optical/UV counterpart was identified through position coincidence (<0.''1) and unusual colors. Assuming that it is the companion, with R = 18.27 {+-} 0.03 mag and effective temperature {approx}> 15,000 K, it would be among the brightest and hottest of low-mass pulsar companions and appears qualitatively different from other eclipsing pulsar systems. In particular, current data suggest that it is a factor of two larger than most white dwarfs of its mass but a factor of four smaller than its Roche lobe. We discuss possible reasons for its high temperature and odd size, and suggest that it recently underwent a violent episode of mass loss. Regardless of origin, its brightness and the relative unimportance of irradiation make it an ideal target for a mass, and hence a neutron star mass, determination.

  17. A METAL-RICH LOW-GRAVITY COMPANION TO A MASSIVE MILLISECOND PULSAR

    SciTech Connect

    Kaplan, D. L.; Bhalerao, V. B.; Van Kerkwijk, M. H.; Koester, D.; Kulkarni, S. R.; Stovall, K. E-mail: mhvk@astro.utoronto.ca

    2013-03-10

    Most millisecond pulsars with low-mass companions are in systems with either helium-core white dwarfs or non-degenerate (''black widow'' or ''redback'') stars. A candidate counterpart to PSR J1816+4510 was identified by Kaplan et al. whose properties were suggestive of both types of companions although identical to neither. We have assembled optical spectroscopy of the candidate companion and confirm that it is part of the binary system with a radial velocity amplitude of 343 {+-} 7 km s{sup -1}, implying a high pulsar mass, M{sub psr}sin {sup 3} i = 1.84 {+-} 0.11 M{sub Sun }, and a companion mass M{sub c} sin {sup 3} i = 0.193 {+-} 0.012 M{sub Sun }, where i is the inclination of the orbit. The companion appears similar to proto-white dwarfs/sdB stars, with a gravity log{sub 10}(g) = 4.9 {+-} 0.3, and effective temperature 16, 000 {+-} 500 K. The strongest lines in the spectrum are from hydrogen, but numerous lines from helium, calcium, silicon, and magnesium are present as well, with implied abundances of roughly 10 times solar (relative to hydrogen). As such, while from the spectrum the companion to PSR J1816+4510 is superficially most similar to a low-mass white dwarf, it has much lower gravity, is substantially larger, and shows substantial metals. Furthermore, it is able to produce ionized gas eclipses, which had previously been seen only for low-mass, non-degenerate companions in redback or black widow systems. We discuss the companion in relation to other sources, but find that we understand neither its nature nor its origins. Thus, the system is interesting for understanding unusual stellar products of binary evolution, as well as, independent of its nature, for determining neutron-star masses.

  18. Optical Identification of He White Dwarfs Orbiting Four Millisecond Pulsars in the Globular Cluster 47 Tucanae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cadelano, M.; Pallanca, C.; Ferraro, F. R.; Salaris, M.; Dalessandro, E.; Lanzoni, B.; Freire, P. C. C.

    2015-10-01

    We used ultra-deep UV observations obtained with the Hubble Space Telescope to search for optical companions to binary millisecond pulsars (MSPs) in the globular cluster 47 Tucanae. We identified four new counterparts (to MSPs 47TucQ, 47TucS, 47TucT, and 47TucY) and confirmed those already known (to MSPs 47TucU and 47TucW). In the color-magnitude diagram, the detected companions are located in a region between the main sequence and the CO white dwarf (WD) cooling sequences, consistent with the cooling tracks of He WDs with masses between 0.15 M⊙ and 0.20 M⊙. For each identified companion, mass, cooling age, temperature, and pulsar mass (as a function of the inclination angle) have been derived and discussed. For 47TucU we also found that the past accretion history likely proceeded at a sub-Eddington rate. The companion to the redback 47TucW is confirmed to be a non-degenerate star, with properties particularly similar to those observed for black widow systems. Two stars have been identified within the 2σ astrometric uncertainty from the radio positions of 47TucH and 47TucI, but the available data prevent us from firmly assessing whether they are the true companions of these two MSPs. Based on observations collected with the NASA/ESA HST (Prop. 12950), obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by AURA, Inc., under NASA contract NAS5-26555.

  19. CONSTRAINTS ON THE EMISSION GEOMETRIES AND SPIN EVOLUTION OF GAMMA-RAY MILLISECOND PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, T. J.; Venter, C.; Harding, A. K.; Çelik, Ö.; Ferrara, E. C.; Guillemot, L.; Smith, D. A.; Hou, X.; Den Hartog, P. R.; Lande, J.; Ray, P. S. E-mail: Christo.Venter@nwu.ac.za

    2014-07-01

    Millisecond pulsars (MSPs) are a growing class of gamma-ray emitters. Pulsed gamma-ray signals have been detected from more than 40 MSPs with the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT). The wider radio beams and more compact magnetospheres of MSPs enable studies of emission geometries over a broader range of phase space than non-recycled radio-loud gamma-ray pulsars. We have modeled the gamma-ray light curves of 40 LAT-detected MSPs using geometric emission models assuming a vacuum retarded-dipole magnetic field. We modeled the radio profiles using a single-altitude hollow-cone beam, with a core component when indicated by polarimetry; however, for MSPs with gamma-ray and radio light curve peaks occurring at nearly the same rotational phase, we assume that the radio emission is co-located with the gamma rays and caustic in nature. The best-fit parameters and confidence intervals are determined using a maximum likelihood technique. We divide the light curves into three model classes, with gamma-ray peaks trailing (Class I), aligned (Class II), or leading (Class III) the radio peaks. Outer gap and slot gap (two-pole caustic) models best fit roughly equal numbers of Class I and II, while Class III are exclusively fit with pair-starved polar cap models. Distinguishing between the model classes based on typical derived parameters is difficult. We explore the evolution of the magnetic inclination angle with period and spin-down power, finding possible correlations. While the presence of significant off-peak emission can often be used as a discriminator between outer gap and slot gap models, a hybrid model may be needed.

  20. Constraints On the Emission Geometries and Spin Evolution Of Gamma-Ray Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, T. J.; Venter, C.; Harding, A. K.; Guillemot, L.; Smith, D. A.; Kramer, M.; Celik, O.; den Hartog, P. R.; Ferrara, E. C.; Hou, X.; Lande, J.; Ray, P. S.

    2014-01-01

    Millisecond pulsars (MSPs) are a growing class of gamma-ray emitters. Pulsed gamma-ray signals have been detected from more than 40 MSPs with the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT). The wider radio beams and more compact magnetospheres of MSPs enable studies of emission geometries over a broader range of phase space than non-recycled radio-loud gamma-ray pulsars. We have modeled the gamma-ray light curves of 40 LAT-detected MSPs using geometric emission models assuming a vacuum retarded-dipole magnetic field. We modeled the radio profiles using a single-altitude hollow-cone beam, with a core component when indicated by polarimetry; however, for MSPs with gamma-ray and radio light curve peaks occurring at nearly the same rotational phase, we assume that the radio emission is co-located with the gamma rays and caustic in nature. The best-fit parameters and confidence intervals are determined using amaximum likelihood technique.We divide the light curves into three model classes, with gamma-ray peaks trailing (Class I), aligned (Class II), or leading (Class III) the radio peaks. Outer gap and slot gap (two-pole caustic) models best fit roughly equal numbers of Class I and II, while Class III are exclusively fit with pair-starved polar cap models. Distinguishing between the model classes based on typical derived parameters is difficult. We explore the evolution of the magnetic inclination angle with period and spin-down power, finding possible correlations. While the presence of significant off-peak emission can often be used as a discriminator between outer gap and slot gap models, a hybrid model may be needed.

  1. Testing Einstein's theory of gravity in a millisecond pulsar triple system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Archibald, Anne

    2015-04-01

    Einstein's theory of gravity depends on a key postulate, the strong equivalence principle. This principle says, among other things, that all objects fall the same way, even objects with strong self-gravity. Almost every metric theory of gravity other than Einstein's general relativity violates the strong equivalence principle at some level. While the weak equivalence principle--for objects with negligible self-gravity--has been tested in the laboratory, the strong equivalence principle requires astrophysical tests. Lunar laser ranging provides the best current tests by measuring whether the Earth and the Moon fall the same way in the gravitational field of the Sun. These tests are limited by the weak self-gravity of the Earth: the gravitational binding energy (over c2) over the mass is only 4 . 6 ×10-10 . By contrast, for neutron stars this same ratio is expected to be roughly 0 . 1 . Thus the recently-discovered system PSR J0337+17, a hierarchical triple consisting of a millisecond pulsar and two white dwarfs, offers the possibility of a test of the strong equivalence principle that is more sensitive by a factor of 20 to 100 than the best existing test. I will describe our observations of this system and our progress towards such a test.

  2. DISCOVERY OF AN ULTRACOMPACT GAMMA-RAY MILLISECOND PULSAR BINARY CANDIDATE

    SciTech Connect

    Kong, Albert K. H.; Jin, Ruolan; Yen, T.-C.; Tam, P. H. T.; Lin, L. C. C.; Hu, C.-P.; Hui, C. Y.; Park, S. M.; Takata, J.; Cheng, K. S.; Kim, C. L.

    2014-10-20

    We report multi-wavelength observations of the unidentified Fermi object 2FGL J1653.6-0159. With the help of high-resolution X-ray observations, we have identified an X-ray and optical counterpart to 2FGL J1653.6-0159. The source exhibits a periodic modulation of 75 minutes in the optical and possibly also in the X-ray. We suggest that 2FGL J1653.6-0159 is a compact binary system with an orbital period of 75 minutes. Combining the gamma-ray and X-ray properties, 2FGL J1653.6-0159 is potentially a black-widow-/redback-type gamma-ray millisecond pulsar (MSP). The optical and X-ray light curve profiles show that the companion is mildly heated by the high-energy emission and that the X-rays are from intrabinary shock. Although no radio pulsation has yet been detected, we estimated that the spin period of the MSP is ∼ 2 ms based on a theoretical model. If pulsation can be confirmed in the future, 2FGL J1653.6-0159 will become the first ultracompact rotation-powered MSP.

  3. Formation of millisecond pulsars with low-mass helium white dwarf companions in very compact binaries

    SciTech Connect

    Jia, Kun; Li, X.-D.

    2014-08-20

    Binary millisecond pulsars (BMSPs) are thought to have evolved from low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs). If the mass transfer in LMXBs is driven by nuclear evolution of the donor star, the final orbital period is predicted to be well correlated with the mass of the white dwarf (WD), which is the degenerate He core of the donor. Here we show that this relation can be extended to very small WD mass (∼0.14-0.17 M {sub ☉}) and narrow orbital period (about a few hours), depending mainly on the metallicities of the donor stars. There is also discontinuity in the relation, which is due to the temporary contraction of the donor when the H-burning shell crosses the hydrogen discontinuity. BMSPs with low-mass He WD companions in very compact binaries can be accounted for if the progenitor binary experienced very late Case A mass transfer. The WD companion of PSR J1738+0333 is likely to evolve from a Pop II star. For PSR J0348+0432, to explain its extreme compact orbit in the Roche-lobe-decoupling phase, even lower metallicity (Z = 0.0001) is required.

  4. A 24 Hr Global Campaign to Assess Precision Timing of the Millisecond Pulsar J1713+0747

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dolch, T.; Lam, M. T.; Cordes, J.; Chatterjee, S.; Bassa, C.; Bhattacharyya, B.; Champion, D. J.; Cognard, I.; Crowter, K.; Demorest, P. B.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Janssen, G.; Jenet, F. A.; Jones, G.; Jordan, C.; Karuppusamy, R.; Keith, M.; Kondratiev, V.; Kramer, M.; Lazarus, P.; Lazio, T. J. W.; Lee, K. J.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Roy, J.; Shannon, R. M.; Stairs, I.; Stovall, K.; Verbiest, J. P. W.; Madison, D. R.; Palliyaguru, N.; Perrodin, D.; Ransom, S.; Stappers, B.; Zhu, W. W.; Dai, S.; Desvignes, G.; Guillemot, L.; Liu, K.; Lyne, A.; Perera, B. B. P.; Petroff, E.; Rankin, J. M.; Smits, R.

    2014-10-01

    The radio millisecond pulsar J1713+0747 is regarded as one of the highest-precision clocks in the sky and is regularly timed for the purpose of detecting gravitational waves. The International Pulsar Timing Array Collaboration undertook a 24 hr global observation of PSR J1713+0747 in an effort to better quantify sources of timing noise in this pulsar, particularly on intermediate (1-24 hr) timescales. We observed the pulsar continuously over 24 hr with the Arecibo, Effelsberg, GMRT, Green Bank, LOFAR, Lovell, Nançay, Parkes, and WSRT radio telescopes. The combined pulse times-of-arrival presented here provide an estimate of what sources of timing noise, excluding DM variations, would be present as compared to an idealized \\sqrt{N} improvement in timing precision, where N is the number of pulses analyzed. In the case of this particular pulsar, we find that intrinsic pulse phase jitter dominates arrival time precision when the signal-to-noise ratio of single pulses exceeds unity, as measured using the eight telescopes that observed at L band/1.4 GHz. We present first results of specific phenomena probed on the unusually long timescale (for a single continuous observing session) of tens of hours, in particular interstellar scintillation, and discuss the degree to which scintillation and profile evolution affect precision timing. This paper presents the data set as a basis for future, deeper studies.

  5. A 24 hr global campaign to assess precision timing of the millisecond pulsar J1713+0747

    SciTech Connect

    Dolch, T.; Lam, M. T.; Cordes, J.; Chatterjee, S.; Bassa, C.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Janssen, G.; Kondratiev, V.; Bhattacharyya, B.; Jordan, C.; Keith, M.; Champion, D. J.; Karuppusamy, R.; Kramer, M.; Lazarus, P.; Cognard, I.; Demorest, P. B.; Jenet, F. A.; Jones, G.; and others

    2014-10-10

    The radio millisecond pulsar J1713+0747 is regarded as one of the highest-precision clocks in the sky and is regularly timed for the purpose of detecting gravitational waves. The International Pulsar Timing Array Collaboration undertook a 24 hr global observation of PSR J1713+0747 in an effort to better quantify sources of timing noise in this pulsar, particularly on intermediate (1-24 hr) timescales. We observed the pulsar continuously over 24 hr with the Arecibo, Effelsberg, GMRT, Green Bank, LOFAR, Lovell, Nançay, Parkes, and WSRT radio telescopes. The combined pulse times-of-arrival presented here provide an estimate of what sources of timing noise, excluding DM variations, would be present as compared to an idealized √N improvement in timing precision, where N is the number of pulses analyzed. In the case of this particular pulsar, we find that intrinsic pulse phase jitter dominates arrival time precision when the signal-to-noise ratio of single pulses exceeds unity, as measured using the eight telescopes that observed at L band/1.4 GHz. We present first results of specific phenomena probed on the unusually long timescale (for a single continuous observing session) of tens of hours, in particular interstellar scintillation, and discuss the degree to which scintillation and profile evolution affect precision timing. This paper presents the data set as a basis for future, deeper studies.

  6. A Non-radial Oscillation Mode in an Accreting Millisecond Pulsar?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strohmayer, Tod; Mahmoodifar, Simin

    2014-03-01

    We present results of targeted searches for signatures of non-radial oscillation modes (such as r- and g-modes) in neutron stars using RXTE data from several accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars (AMXPs). We search for potentially coherent signals in the neutron star rest frame by first removing the phase delays associated with the star's binary motion and computing fast Fourier transform power spectra of continuous light curves with up to 230 time bins. We search a range of frequencies in which both r- and g-modes are theoretically expected to reside. Using data from the discovery outburst of the 435 Hz pulsar XTE J1751-305 we find a single candidate, coherent oscillation with a frequency of 0.5727597 × νspin = 249.332609 Hz, and a fractional Fourier amplitude of 7.46 × 10-4. We estimate the significance of this feature at the 1.6 × 10-3 level, slightly better than a 3σ detection. Based on the observed frequency we argue that possible mode identifications include rotationally modified g-modes associated with either a helium-rich surface layer or a density discontinuity due to electron captures on hydrogen in the accreted ocean. In the latter case the presence of sufficient hydrogen in this ultracompact system with a likely helium-rich donor would present an interesting puzzle. Alternatively, the frequency could be identified with that of an inertial mode or a core r-mode modified by the presence of a solid crust; however, the r-mode amplitude required to account for the observed modulation amplitude would induce a large spin-down rate inconsistent with the observed pulse timing measurements. For the AMXPs XTE J1814-338 and NGC 6440 X-2 we do not find any candidate oscillation signals, and we place upper limits on the fractional Fourier amplitude of any coherent oscillations in our frequency search range of 7.8 × 10-4 and 5.6 × 10-3, respectively. We briefly discuss the prospects and sensitivity for similar searches with future, larger X-ray collecting area

  7. Timing of the accreting millisecond pulsar SAX J1748.9-2021 during its 2015 outburst

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanna, A.; Burderi, L.; Riggio, A.; Pintore, F.; Di Salvo, T.; Gambino, A. F.; Iaria, R.; Matranga, M.; Scarano, F.

    2016-06-01

    We report on the timing analysis of the 2015 outburst of the intermittent accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar SAX J1748.9-2021 observed on March 4 by the X-ray satellite XMM-Newton. By phase connecting the time of arrivals of the observed pulses, we derived the best-fitting orbital solution for the 2015 outburst. We investigated the energy pulse profile dependence finding that the pulse fractional amplitude increases with energy while no significant time lags are detected. Moreover, we investigated the previous outbursts from this source, finding previously undetected pulsations in some intervals during the 2010 outburst of the source. Comparing the updated set of orbital parameters, in particular the value of the time of passage from the ascending node, with the orbital solutions reported from the previous outbursts, we estimated for the first time the orbital period derivative corresponding with dot{P}_{orb}=(1.1± 0.3)× 10^{-10} s s-1. We note that this value is significant at 3.5σ confidence level, because of significant fluctuations with respect to the parabolic trend and more observations are needed in order to confirm the finding. Assuming the reliability of the result, we suggest that the large value of the orbital-period derivative can be explained as a result of a highly non-conservative mass transfer driven by emission of gravitational waves, which implies the ejection of matter from a region close to the inner Lagrangian point. We also discuss possible alternative explanations.

  8. Statistical and polarization properties of giant pulses of the millisecond pulsar B1937+21

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhuravlev, V. I.; Popov, M. V.; Soglasnov, V. A.; Kondrat'ev, V. I.; Kovalev, Y. Y.; Bartel, N.; Ghigo, F.

    2013-04-01

    We have studied the statistical and polarization properties of giant pulses (GPs) emitted by the millisecond pulsar B1937+21, with high sensitivity and time resolution. The observations were made in 2005 June with the 100-m Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope at S-band (2052-2116 MHz) using the Mk5A Very Long Baseline Interferometry recording system, with formal time resolution of 16 ns. The total observing time was about 4.5 h; the rate of detection of GPs was about 130 per hour at the average longitudes of the main pulse (MPGPs) and 60 per hour at the interpulse (IPGPs). While the average profile shows well-defined polarization behaviour, with regular evolution of the linear polarization position angle (PA), GPs exhibit random properties, occasionally having high linear or circular polarization. Neither MPGPs nor IPGPs show a preferred PA. The cumulative probability distribution (CPD) of GP pulse energy was constructed down to the level where GPs merge with regular pulses and noise. For both MPGPs and IPGPs, the CPD follows a power law with a break, the power index changing from -2.4 at high energy to -1.6 for low energy. Pulse smearing due to scattering masks the intrinsic shape and duration of the detected GPs. The smearing time varied during the observing session within a range of a few hundred nanoseconds. The measured polarization and statistical properties of GPs impose strong constraints on physical models of GPs. Some of these properties support a model in which GPs are generated by the electric discharge caused by magnetic reconnection of field lines connecting the opposite magnetic poles of a neutron star.

  9. Study of frame tie between planetary ephemerids and ICRF with millisecond and young pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Jingbo; Hobbs, George; Coles, William

    2016-07-01

    The positions of pulsar can be measured by pulsar timing technology and VLBI astrometry with high precision. They can be used to tie between referece frame based on solar system ephemerids and distant quasars with high accuracy. In this paper, we have collect the pulsar positions with VLBI measurement and obtain the pulsar timing position form Nanshan and Parkes data archive. We derive the rotation matrix between JPL DE and ICRF reference frame.

  10. X-ray and γ-ray studies of the millisecond pulsar and possible X-ray binary/radio pulsar transition object PSR J1723-2837

    SciTech Connect

    Bogdanov, Slavko; Esposito, Paolo; Crawford III, Fronefield; Possenti, Andrea; McLaughlin, Maura A.; Freire, Paulo

    2014-01-20

    We present X-ray observations of the 'redback' eclipsing radio millisecond pulsar (MSP) and candidate radio pulsar/X-ray binary transition object PSR J1723-2837. The X-ray emission from the system is predominantly non-thermal and exhibits pronounced variability as a function of orbital phase, with a factor of ∼2 reduction in brightness around superior conjunction. Such temporal behavior appears to be a defining characteristic of this variety of peculiar MSP binaries and is likely caused by a partial geometric occultation by the main-sequence-like companion of a shock within the binary. There is no indication of diffuse X-ray emission from a bow shock or pulsar wind nebula associated with the pulsar. We also report on a search for point source emission and γ-ray pulsations in Fermi Large Area Telescope data using a likelihood analysis and photon probability weighting. Although PSR J1723-2837 is consistent with being a γ-ray point source, due to the strong Galactic diffuse emission at its position a definitive association cannot be established. No statistically significant pulsations or modulation at the orbital period are detected. For a presumed detection, the implied γ-ray luminosity is ≲5% of its spin-down power. This indicates that PSR J1723-2837 is either one of the least efficient γ-ray producing MSPs or, if the detection is spurious, the γ-ray emission pattern is not directed toward us.

  11. Modeling and Maximum Likelihood Fitting of Gamma-Ray and Radio Light Curves of Millisecond Pulsars Detected with Fermi

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, T. J.; Harding, A. K.; Venter, C.

    2012-01-01

    Pulsed gamma rays have been detected with the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) from more than 20 millisecond pulsars (MSPs), some of which were discovered in radio observations of bright, unassociated LAT sources. We have fit the radio and gamma-ray light curves of 19 LAT-detected MSPs in the context of geometric, outermagnetospheric emission models assuming the retarded vacuum dipole magnetic field using a Markov chain Monte Carlo maximum likelihood technique. We find that, in many cases, the models are able to reproduce the observed light curves well and provide constraints on the viewing geometries that are in agreement with those from radio polarization measurements. Additionally, for some MSPs we constrain the altitudes of both the gamma-ray and radio emission regions. The best-fit magnetic inclination angles are found to cover a broader range than those of non-recycled gamma-ray pulsars.

  12. A 5.75-millisecond pulsar in the globular cluster 47 Tucanae

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Manchester, R. N.; Lyne, A. G.; Johnston, S.; D'Amico, N.; Lim, J.; Kniffen, D. A.

    1990-01-01

    A pulsar with a period of 5.75 ms and a dispersion measure of 25/cu cm pc has been found in the direction of 47 Tucanae. Despite its probable origin as a member of a binary system, timing measurements show that the pulsar is now single. The observed dispersion measure is consistent with the pulsar lying outside the Galactic electron layer and within 47 Tucanae, but it is very different from the value of 67/cu cm pc for the pulsars that were reported recently as being in this globular cluster. It is suggested that the latter pulsars probably do not in fact lie within 47 Tucanae.

  13. EGRET upper limits to the high-energy gamma-ray emission from the millisecond pulsars in nearby globular clusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Michelson, P. F.; Bertsch, D. L.; Brazier, K.; Chiang, J.; Dingus, B. L.; Fichtel, C. E.; Fierro, J.; Hartman, R. C.; Hunter, S. D.; Kanbach, G.

    1994-01-01

    We report upper limits to the high-energy gamma-ray emission from the millisecond pulsars (MSPs) in a number of globular clusters. The observations were done as part of an all-sky survey by the energetic Gamma Ray Experiment Telescope (EGRET) on the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory (CGRO) during Phase I of the CGRO mission (1991 June to 1992 November). Several theoretical models suggest that MSPs may be sources of high-energy gamma radiation emitted either as primary radiation from the pulsar magnetosphere or as secondary radiation generated by conversion into photons of a substantial part of the relativistic e(+/-) pair wind expected to flow from the pulsar. To date, no high-energy emission has been detected from an individual MSP. However, a large number of MSPs are expected in globular cluster cores where the formation rate of accreting binary systems is high. Model predictions of the total number of pulsars range in the hundreds for some clusters. These expectations have been reinforced by recent discoveries of a substantial number of radio MSPs in several clusters; for example, 11 have been found in 47 Tucanae (Manchester et al.). The EGRET observations have been used to obtain upper limits for the efficiency eta of conversion of MSP spin-down power into hard gamma rays. The upper limits are also compared with the gamma-ray fluxes predicted from theoretical models of pulsar wind emission (Tavani). The EGRET limits put significant constraints on either the emission models or the number of pulsars in the globular clusters.

  14. Optical and Infrared Lightcurve Modeling of the Gamma-ray Millisecond Pulsar 2FGL J2339.6-0532

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yen, Tzu-Ching; Kong, Albert Kwok-Hing; Yatsu, Yoichi; Hanayama, Hidekazu; Nagayama, Takahiro; Oister

    2013-09-01

    We report the detection of a quasi-sinusoidally modulated optical flux with a period of 4.6343 hour in the optical and infrared band of the Fermi source 2FGL J2339.7-0531. Comparing the multi-wavelength observations, we suggest that 2FGL J2339.7- 0531 is a γ-ray emitting millisecond pulsar (MSP) in a binary system with an optically visible late-type companion accreted by the pulsar, where the MSP is responsible for the γ-ray emission while the optical and infrared emission originate from the heated side of the companion. Based on the optical properties, the companion star is believed to be heated by the pulsar and reaches peak magnitude when the heated side faces the observer. We conclude that 2FGL J2339.7-0531 is a member of a subclass of γ-ray emitting pulsars -the "black widows"- recently revealed to be evaporating their companions in the late-stage of recycling as a prominent group of these newly revealed Fermi sources.

  15. Optical counterparts of two Fermi millisecond pulsars: PSR J1301+0833 and PSR J1628–3205

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Miao; Halpern, Jules P.; Thorstensen, John R.

    2014-11-10

    Using the 1.3 m and 2.4 m Telescopes of the MDM Observatory, we identified the close companions of two eclipsing millisecond radio pulsars that were discovered by the Green Bank Telescope in searches of Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope sources, and measured their light curves. PSR J1301+0833 is a black widow pulsar in a 6.5 hr orbit whose companion star is strongly heated on the side facing the pulsar. It varies from R = 21.8 to R > 24 around the orbit. PSR J1628–3205 is a 'redback', a nearly Roche-lobe-filling system in a 5.0 hr orbit whose optical modulation in the range 19.0 < R < 19.4 is dominated by strong ellipsoidal variations, indicating a large orbital inclination angle. PSR J1628–3205 also shows evidence for a long-term variation of about 0.2 mag, and an asymmetric temperature distribution possibly due to either off-center heating by the pulsar wind, or large starspots. Modeling of its light curve restricts the inclination angle to i > 55°, the mass of the companion to 0.16 < M{sub c} < 0.30 M {sub ☉}, and the effective temperature to 3560 < T {sub eff} < 4670 K. As is the case for several redbacks, the companion of PSR J1628–3205 is less dense and hotter than a main-sequence star of the same mass.

  16. Optical Counterparts of Two Fermi Millisecond Pulsars: PSR J1301+0833 and PSR J1628-3205

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Miao; Halpern, Jules P.; Thorstensen, John R.

    2014-11-01

    Using the 1.3 m and 2.4 m Telescopes of the MDM Observatory, we identified the close companions of two eclipsing millisecond radio pulsars that were discovered by the Green Bank Telescope in searches of Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope sources, and measured their light curves. PSR J1301+0833 is a black widow pulsar in a 6.5 hr orbit whose companion star is strongly heated on the side facing the pulsar. It varies from R = 21.8 to R > 24 around the orbit. PSR J1628-3205 is a "redback," a nearly Roche-lobe-filling system in a 5.0 hr orbit whose optical modulation in the range 19.0 < R < 19.4 is dominated by strong ellipsoidal variations, indicating a large orbital inclination angle. PSR J1628-3205 also shows evidence for a long-term variation of about 0.2 mag, and an asymmetric temperature distribution possibly due to either off-center heating by the pulsar wind, or large starspots. Modeling of its light curve restricts the inclination angle to i > 55°, the mass of the companion to 0.16 < Mc < 0.30 M ⊙, and the effective temperature to 3560 < T eff < 4670 K. As is the case for several redbacks, the companion of PSR J1628-3205 is less dense and hotter than a main-sequence star of the same mass.

  17. A Shapiro Delay Detection in the Binary System Hosting the Millisecond Pulsar PSR J1910-5959A

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corongiu, A.; Burgay, M.; Possenti, A.; Camilo, F.; D'Amico, N.; Lyne, A. G.; Manchester, R. N.; Sarkissian, J. M.; Bailes, M.; Johnston, S.; Kramer, M.; van Straten, W.

    2012-12-01

    PSR J1910-5959A is a binary pulsar with a helium white dwarf (HeWD) companion located about 6 arcmin from the center of the globular cluster NGC 6752. Based on 12 years of observations at the Parkes radio telescope, the relativistic Shapiro delay has been detected in this system. We obtain a companion mass MC = 0.180 ± 0.018 M ⊙ (1σ) implying that the pulsar mass lies in the range 1.1 M ⊙ <= MP <= 1.5 M ⊙. We compare our results with previous optical determinations of the companion mass and examine prospects for using this new measurement for calibrating the mass-radius relation for HeWDs and for investigating their evolution in a pulsar binary system. Finally, we examine the set of binary systems hosting a millisecond pulsar and a low-mass HeWD for which the mass of both stars has been measured. We confirm that the correlation between the companion mass and the orbital period predicted by Tauris & Savonije reproduces the observed values but find that the predicted MP -PB correlation overestimates the neutron star mass by about 0.5 M ⊙ in the orbital period range covered by the observations. Moreover, a few systems do not obey the observed MP -PB correlation. We discuss these results in the framework of the mechanisms that inhibit the accretion of matter by a neutron star during its evolution in a low-mass X-ray binary.

  18. Multi-wavelength emissions from the millisecond pulsar binary PSR J1023+0038 during an accretion active state

    SciTech Connect

    Takata, J.; Leung, Gene C. K.; Wu, E. M. H.; Cheng, K. S.; Li, K. L.; Kong, A. K. H.; Tam, P. H. T.; Hui, C. Y.; Xing, Yi; Wang, Zhongxiang; Cao, Yi; Tang, Sumin E-mail: akong@phys.nthu.edu.tw

    2014-04-20

    Recent observations strongly suggest that the millisecond pulsar binary PSR J1023+0038 has developed an accretion disk since 2013 June. We present a multi-wavelength analysis of PSR J1023+0038, which reveals that (1) its gamma-rays suddenly brightened within a few days in 2013 June/July and has remained at a high gamma-ray state for several months; (2) both UV and X-ray fluxes have increased by roughly an order of magnitude; and (3) the spectral energy distribution has changed significantly after the gamma-ray sudden flux change. Time variabilities associated with UV and X-rays are on the order of 100-500 s and 50-100 s, respectively. Our model suggests that a newly formed accretion disk, due to the sudden increase of the stellar wind, could explain the changes of all these observed features. The increase of UV is emitted from the disk, and a new component in gamma-rays is produced by inverse Compton scattering between the new UV component and pulsar wind. The increase of X-rays results from the enhancement of injection pulsar wind energy into the intra-binary shock due to the increase of the stellar wind. We also predict that the radio pulses may be blocked by the evaporated winds from the disk, and the pulsar is still powered by rotation.

  19. Pulsed Gamma-Rays From the Millisecond Pulsar J0030+0451 with the Fermi Large Area Telescope

    SciTech Connect

    Abdo, Aous A.; Ackermann, M.; Atwood, W.B.; Axelsson, M. Baldini, L.; Ballet, J.; Barbiellini, Guido; Bastieri, Denis; Battelino, M.; Baughman, B.M.; Bechtol, K.; Bellazzini, R.; Berenji, B.; Bloom, Elliott D.; Bonamente, E.; Borgland, A.W.; Bregeon, J.; Brez, A.; Brigida, M.; Bruel, P.; Burnett, Thompson H.; /more authors..

    2011-11-17

    We report the discovery of gamma-ray pulsations from the nearby isolated millisecond pulsar PSR J0030+0451 with the Large Area Telescope (LAT) on the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope (formerly GLAST). This discovery makes PSR J0030+0451 the second millisecond pulsar to be detected in gamma-rays after PSR J0218+4232, observed by the EGRET instrument on the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory. The spin-down power {dot E} = 3.5 x 10{sup 33} ergs s{sup -1} is an order of magnitude lower than the empirical lower bound of previously known gamma-ray pulsars. The emission profile is characterized by two narrow peaks, respectively 0.07 {+-} 0.01 and 0.08 {+-} 0.02 wide, separated by 0.44 {+-} 0.02 in phase. The first gamma-ray peak falls 0.15 {+-} 0.01 after the main radio peak. The pulse shape is similar to that of the 'normal' gamma-ray pulsars. An exponentially cut-off power-law fit of the emission spectrum leads to an integral photon flux above 100 MeV of (6.76 {+-} 1.05 {+-} 1.35) x 10{sup -8} cm{sup -2} s{sup -1} with cut-off energy (1.7 {+-} 0.4 {+-} 0.5) GeV. Based on its parallax distance of (300 {+-} 90) pc, we obtain a gamma-ray efficiency L{sub {gamma}}/{dot E} {approx_equal} 15% for the conversion of spin-down energy rate into gamma-ray radiation, assuming isotropic emission.

  20. Ionization break-out from millisecond pulsar wind nebulae: an X-ray probe of the origin of superluminous supernovae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Metzger, Brian D.; Vurm, Indrek; Hascoët, Romain; Beloborodov, Andrei M.

    2014-01-01

    Magnetic spin-down of a rapidly rotating (millisecond) neutron star has been proposed as the power source of hydrogen-poor `superluminous' supernovae (SLSNe-I). However, producing an unambiguous test that can distinguish this model from alternatives, such as circumstellar interaction, has proven challenging. After the supernova explosion, the pulsar wind inflates a hot cavity behind the expanding stellar ejecta: the nascent millisecond pulsar wind nebula. Electron/positron pairs injected by the wind cool through inverse Compton scattering and synchrotron emission, producing a pair cascade and hard X-ray spectrum inside the nebula. These X-rays ionize the inner exposed side of the ejecta, driving an ionization front that propagates outwards with time. Under some conditions this front can breach the ejecta surface within months after the optical supernova peak, allowing ˜0.1-1 keV photons to escape the nebula unattenuated with a characteristic luminosity LX ˜ 1043-1045 erg s-1. This `ionization break-out' may explain the luminous X-ray emission observed from the transient SCP 06F, providing direct evidence that this SLSN was indeed engine powered. Luminous break-out requires a low ejecta mass and that the spin-down time of the pulsar be comparable to the photon diffusion time-scale at optical maximum, the latter condition being similar to that required for a supernova with a high optical fluence. These relatively special requirements may explain why most SLSNe-I are not accompanied by detectable X-ray emission. Global asymmetry of the supernova ejecta increases the likelihood of an early break-out along the direction of lowest density. Atomic states with lower threshold energies are more readily ionized at earlier times near optical maximum, allowing `UV break-out' across a wider range of pulsar and ejecta properties than X-ray break-out, possibly contributing to the blue/UV colours of SLSNe-I.

  1. Discovery of a Millisecond Pulsar in the 5.4 day Binary 3FGL J1417.5-4402: Observing the Late Phase of Pulsar Recycling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Camilo, F.; Reynolds, J. E.; Ransom, S. M.; Halpern, J. P.; Bogdanov, S.; Kerr, M.; Ray, P. S.; Cordes, J. M.; Sarkissian, J.; Barr, E. D.; Ferrara, E. C.

    2016-03-01

    In a search of the unidentified Fermi gamma-ray source 3FGL J1417.5-4402 with the Parkes radio telescope, we discovered PSR J1417-4402, a 2.66 ms pulsar having the same 5.4 day orbital period as the optical and X-ray binary identified by Strader et al. The existence of radio pulsations implies that the neutron star is currently not accreting. Substantial outflows from the companion render the radio pulsar undetectable for more than half of the orbit, and may contribute to the observed Hα emission. Our initial pulsar observations, together with the optically inferred orbit and inclination, imply a mass ratio of 0.171 ± 0.002, a companion mass of {M}2=0.33+/- 0.03 M⊙, and a neutron star mass in the range 1.77≤slant {M}1≤slant 2.13 M⊙. However, there remains a discrepancy between the distance of 4.4 kpc inferred from the optical properties of the companion and the smaller radio dispersion measure distance of 1.6 kpc. The smaller distance would reduce the inferred Roche-lobe filling factor, increase the inferred inclination angle, and decrease the masses. As a wide binary, PSR J1417-4402 differs from the radio-eclipsing black widow and redback pulsars being discovered in large numbers by Fermi. It is probably a system that began mass transfer onto the neutron star after the companion star left the main sequence. The companion should end its evolution as a He white dwarf in a 6-20 day orbit, i.e., as a typical binary millisecond pulsar companion.

  2. MODELING PHASE-ALIGNED GAMMA-RAY AND RADIO MILLISECOND PULSAR LIGHT CURVES

    SciTech Connect

    Venter, C.; Johnson, T. J.; Harding, A. K.

    2012-01-01

    Since the discovery of the first eight gamma-ray millisecond pulsars (MSPs) by the Fermi Large Area Telescope, this population has been steadily expanding. Four of the more recent detections, PSR J0034-0534, PSR J1939+2134 (B1937+21; the first MSP ever discovered), PSR J1959+2048 (B1957+20; the first discovery of a black widow system), and PSR J2214+3000, exhibit a phenomenon not present in the original discoveries: nearly phase-aligned radio and gamma-ray light curves (LCs). To account for the phase alignment, we explore models where both the radio and gamma-ray emission originate either in the outer magnetosphere near the light cylinder or near the polar caps. Using a Markov Chain Monte Carlo technique to search for best-fit model parameters, we obtain reasonable LC fits for the first three of these MSPs in the context of 'altitude-limited' outer gap (alOG) and two-pole caustic (alTPC) geometries (for both gamma-ray and radio emission). These models differ from the standard outer gap (OG)/two-pole caustic (TPC) models in two respects: the radio emission originates in caustics at relatively high altitudes compared to the usual conal radio beams, and we allow both the minimum and maximum altitudes of the gamma-ray and radio emission regions to vary within a limited range (excluding the minimum gamma-ray altitude of the alTPC model, which is kept constant at the stellar radius, and that of the alOG model, which is set to the position-dependent null charge surface altitude). Alternatively, phase-aligned solutions also exist for emission originating near the stellar surface in a slot gap scenario ('low-altitude slot gap' (laSG) models). We find that the alTPC models provide slightly better LC fits than the alOG models, and both of these give better fits than the laSG models (for the limited range of parameters considered in the case of the laSG models). Thus, our fits imply that the phase-aligned LCs are likely of caustic origin, produced in the outer magnetosphere

  3. Modeling Phase-Aligned Gamma-Ray and Radio Millisecond Pulsar Light Curves

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Venter, C.; Johnson, T.; Harding, A.

    2012-01-01

    Since the discovery of the first eight gamma-ray millisecond pulsars (MSPs) by the Fermi Large Area Telescope, this population has been steadily expanding. Four of the more recent detections, PSR J00340534, PSR J1939+2134 (B1937+21; the first MSP ever discovered), PSR J1959+2048 (B1957+20; the first discovery of a black widow system), and PSR J2214+3000, exhibit a phenomenon not present in the original discoveries: nearly phase-aligned radio and gamma-ray light curves (LCs). To account for the phase alignment, we explore models where both the radio and gamma-ray emission originate either in the outer magnetosphere near the light cylinder or near the polar caps. Using a Markov Chain Monte Carlo technique to search for best-fit model parameters, we obtain reasonable LC fits for the first three of these MSPs in the context of altitude-limited outer gap (alOG) and two-pole caustic (alTPC) geometries (for both gamma-ray and radio emission). These models differ from the standard outer gap (OG)/two-pole caustic (TPC) models in two respects: the radio emission originates in caustics at relatively high altitudes compared to the usual conal radio beams, and we allow both the minimum and maximum altitudes of the gamma-ray and radio emission regions to vary within a limited range (excluding the minimum gamma-ray altitude of the alTPC model, which is kept constant at the stellar radius, and that of the alOG model, which is set to the position-dependent null charge surface altitude). Alternatively, phase-aligned solutions also exist for emission originating near the stellar surface in a slot gap scenario (low-altitude slot gap (laSG) models). We find that the alTPC models provide slightly better LC fits than the alOG models, and both of these give better fits than the laSG models (for the limited range of parameters considered in the case of the laSG models). Thus, our fits imply that the phase-aligned LCs are likely of caustic origin, produced in the outer magnetosphere, and

  4. Evidence for a Millisecond Pulsar in 4U 1636-53 During a Superburst

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strohmayer, Tod E.; Markwardt, Craig B.; White, Nicholas E. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    We report the discovery with the Proportional Counter Array on board the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer of highly coherent 582 Hz pulsations during the February 22, 2001 (UT) 'superburst' from 4U 1636-53. The pulsations are detected during an 800 s interval spanning the flux maximum of the burst. Within this interval the barycentric oscillation frequency increases in a monotonic fashion from 581.89 to 581.93 Hz. The predicted orbital motion of the neutron star during this interval is consistent with such an increase as long as optical maximum corresponds roughly with superior conjunction of V801 Arae, the optical companion to the neutron star in 4U 1636-53. We show that a range of circular orbits with 90 < v(sub ns) sin i < 175 km/s and 0.336 > phi(sub 0) > 0.277 for the neutron star can provide an excellent description of the frequency and phase evolution. The brevity of the observed pulse train with respect to the 3.8 hour orbital period unfortunately does not allow more precise constraints. The average pulse profile is sinusoidal and the time averaged pulsation amplitude, as inferred from the half amplitude of the sinusoid is 1%, smaller than typical for burst oscillations observed in normal thermonuclear bursts. We do not detect any higher harmonics nor the putative subharmonic near 290 Hz. The 90% upper limits on signal amplitude at the subharmonic and first harmonic are 0.1 and 0.06%, respectively. The highly coherent pulsation, with a Q = v(sub 0)/delta-v > 4.5 x 10(exp 5) provides compelling evidence for a rapidly rotating neutron star in 4U 1636-53, and further supports the connection of burst oscillation frequencies with the spin frequencies of neutron stars. Our results provide further evidence that some millisecond pulsars are spun up via accretion in LMXBs. We also discuss the implications of our orbital velocity constraint for the masses of the components of 4U 1636-53.

  5. Partial accretion in the propeller stage of accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gungor, Can; Gogus, Ersin; Eksi, Kazim Yavuz; Guver, Tolga

    2016-07-01

    Accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars (AMXPs) are very important objects for studying the stages of disk - magnetosphere interaction as these objects may show different stages in an observable duration. A typical X-ray light curve of an outburst of AMXP has a fast rise and an exponential decay phases. Most of the outbursts have a knee where the flux goes from the slow decay stage to the rapid decay stage. This knee may be linked to the transition from accretion to propeller stage. Since, after the knee, the X-ray luminosity of the source is still higher than its quiescent level, the accretion from inner disc must be continuing in the propeller stage with a lower fraction than in the accretion stage. The X-ray does not only come from accretion onto the poles but the inner parts of the disk may also contribute to the total X-ray luminosity. To infer what fraction (f) of the inflowing matter accretes onto the star the light curve in the propeller stage, one should first separate the emission originating from the disk and obtain a light curve of X-ray emission only from the magnetic poles. We provide a new method to infer from the observational data the fraction of accreting matter onto the neutron star pole to the mass transferring from outer layers of the disc to the inner disc (f), as a function of the fastness parameter (ω_{*}), assuming the knee is due to the transition from accretion to the propeller stage. We transform X-ray luminosities to the mass fraction, f, and the time scale of outburst to fastness parameter, ω_*. It allows us to compare different types of outbursts of an AMXP in f - ω_* space which is universal for a unique system. We analysed the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer/Proportional Counter Array (RXTE/PCA) observations of the 2000 and the 2011 outbursts and the Swift Gamma-Ray Burst Mission/X-ray Telescope (SWIFT/XRT) data of the 2013 outburst of the most known AMXP, Aql X-1 using a combination of blackbody representing hot spot, disk blackbody

  6. NuSTAR OBSERVATIONS AND BROADBAND SPECTRAL ENERGY DISTRIBUTION MODELING OF THE MILLISECOND PULSAR BINARY PSR J1023+0038

    SciTech Connect

    Li, K. L.; Kong, A. K. H.; Tam, P. H. T.; Jin, Ruolan; Takata, J.; Cheng, K. S.; Hui, C. Y. E-mail: akong@phys.nthu.edu.tw

    2014-12-20

    We report the first hard X-ray (3-79 keV) observations of the millisecond pulsar (MSP) binary PSR J1023+0038 using NuSTAR. This system has been shown transiting between a low-mass X-ray binary (LMXB) state and a rotation-powered MSP state. The NuSTAR observations were taken in both LMXB state and rotation-powered state. The source is clearly seen in both states up to ∼79 keV. During the LMXB state, the 3-79 keV flux is about a factor of 10 higher than in the rotation-powered state. The hard X-rays show clear orbital modulation during the X-ray faint rotation-powered state but the X-ray orbital period is not detected in the X-ray bright LMXB state. In addition, the X-ray spectrum changes from a flat power-law spectrum during the rotation-powered state to a steeper power-law spectrum in the LMXB state. We suggest that the hard X-rays are due to the intrabinary shock from the interaction between the pulsar wind and the injected material from the low-mass companion star. During the rotation-powered MSP state, the X-ray orbital modulation is due to Doppler boosting of the shocked pulsar wind. At the LMXB state, the evaporating matter of the accretion disk due to the gamma-ray irradiation from the pulsar stops almost all the pulsar wind, resulting in the disappearance of the X-ray orbital modulation.

  7. THE NEAREST MILLISECOND PULSAR REVISITED WITH XMM-NEWTON: IMPROVED MASS-RADIUS CONSTRAINTS FOR PSR J0437-4715

    SciTech Connect

    Bogdanov, Slavko

    2013-01-10

    I present an analysis of the deepest X-ray exposure of a radio millisecond pulsar (MSP) to date, an X-ray Multi Mirror-Newton European Photon Imaging Camera spectroscopic and timing observation of the nearest known MSP, PSR J0437-4715. The timing data clearly reveal a secondary broad X-ray pulse offset from the main pulse by {approx}0.55 in rotational phase. In the context of a model of surface thermal emission from the hot polar caps of the neutron star, this can be plausibly explained by a magnetic dipole field that is significantly displaced from the stellar center. Such an offset, if commonplace in MSPs, has important implications for studies of the pulsar population, high energy pulsed emission, and the pulsar contribution to cosmic-ray positrons. The continuum emission shows evidence for at least three thermal components, with the hottest radiation most likely originating from the hot magnetic polar caps and the cooler emission from the bulk of the surface. I present pulse phase-resolved X-ray spectroscopy of PSR J0437-4715, which for the first time properly accounts for the system geometry of a radio pulsar. Such an approach is essential for unbiased measurements of the temperatures and emission areas of polar cap radiation from pulsars. Detailed modeling of the thermal pulses, including relativistic and atmospheric effects, provides a constraint on the redshift-corrected neutron star radius of R > 11.1 km (at 3{sigma} conf.) for the current radio timing mass measurement of 1.76 M {sub Sun }. This limit favors 'stiff' equations of state.

  8. The Nearest Millisecond Pulsar Revisited with XMM-Newton: Improved Mass-radius Constraints for PSR J0437-4715

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanov, Slavko

    2013-01-01

    I present an analysis of the deepest X-ray exposure of a radio millisecond pulsar (MSP) to date, an X-ray Multi Mirror-Newton European Photon Imaging Camera spectroscopic and timing observation of the nearest known MSP, PSR J0437-4715. The timing data clearly reveal a secondary broad X-ray pulse offset from the main pulse by ~0.55 in rotational phase. In the context of a model of surface thermal emission from the hot polar caps of the neutron star, this can be plausibly explained by a magnetic dipole field that is significantly displaced from the stellar center. Such an offset, if commonplace in MSPs, has important implications for studies of the pulsar population, high energy pulsed emission, and the pulsar contribution to cosmic-ray positrons. The continuum emission shows evidence for at least three thermal components, with the hottest radiation most likely originating from the hot magnetic polar caps and the cooler emission from the bulk of the surface. I present pulse phase-resolved X-ray spectroscopy of PSR J0437-4715, which for the first time properly accounts for the system geometry of a radio pulsar. Such an approach is essential for unbiased measurements of the temperatures and emission areas of polar cap radiation from pulsars. Detailed modeling of the thermal pulses, including relativistic and atmospheric effects, provides a constraint on the redshift-corrected neutron star radius of R > 11.1 km (at 3σ conf.) for the current radio timing mass measurement of 1.76 M ⊙. This limit favors "stiff" equations of state.

  9. A SHAPIRO DELAY DETECTION IN THE BINARY SYSTEM HOSTING THE MILLISECOND PULSAR PSR J1910-5959A

    SciTech Connect

    Corongiu, A.; Burgay, M.; Possenti, A.; D'Amico, N.; Camilo, F.; Lyne, A. G.; Kramer, M.; Manchester, R. N.; Johnston, S.; Sarkissian, J. M.; Bailes, M.; Van Straten, W.

    2012-12-01

    PSR J1910-5959A is a binary pulsar with a helium white dwarf (HeWD) companion located about 6 arcmin from the center of the globular cluster NGC 6752. Based on 12 years of observations at the Parkes radio telescope, the relativistic Shapiro delay has been detected in this system. We obtain a companion mass M{sub C} = 0.180 {+-} 0.018 M {sub Sun} (1{sigma}) implying that the pulsar mass lies in the range 1.1 M {sub Sun} {<=} M{sub P} {<=} 1.5 M {sub Sun }. We compare our results with previous optical determinations of the companion mass and examine prospects for using this new measurement for calibrating the mass-radius relation for HeWDs and for investigating their evolution in a pulsar binary system. Finally, we examine the set of binary systems hosting a millisecond pulsar and a low-mass HeWD for which the mass of both stars has been measured. We confirm that the correlation between the companion mass and the orbital period predicted by Tauris and Savonije reproduces the observed values but find that the predicted M{sub P} -P{sub B} correlation overestimates the neutron star mass by about 0.5 M {sub Sun} in the orbital period range covered by the observations. Moreover, a few systems do not obey the observed M{sub P} -P{sub B} correlation. We discuss these results in the framework of the mechanisms that inhibit the accretion of matter by a neutron star during its evolution in a low-mass X-ray binary.

  10. The Temperature and Cooling Age of the White Dwarf Companion to the Millisecond Pulsar PSR B1855+09.

    PubMed

    van Kerkwijk MH; Bell; Kaspi; Kulkarni

    2000-02-10

    We report on Keck and Hubble Space Telescope observations of the binary millisecond pulsar PSR B1855+09. We detect its white dwarf companion and measure mF555W=25.90+/-0.12 and mF814W=24.19+/-0.11 (Vega system). From the reddening-corrected color, (mF555W-mF814W&parr0;0=1.06+/-0.21, we infer a temperature Teff=4800+/-800 K. The white dwarf mass is known accurately from measurements of the Shapiro delay of the pulsar signal, MC=0.258+0.028-0.016 M middle dot in circle. Hence, given a cooling model, one can use the measured temperature to determine the cooling age. The main uncertainty in the cooling models for such low-mass white dwarfs is the amount of residual nuclear burning, which is set by the thickness of the hydrogen layer surrounding the helium core. From the properties of similar systems, it has been inferred that helium white dwarfs form with thick hydrogen layers, with mass greater, similar3x10-3 M middle dot in circle, which leads to significant additional heating. This is consistent with expectations from simple evolutionary models of the preceding binary evolution. For PSR B1855+09, though, such models lead to a cooling age of approximately 10 Gyr, which is twice the spin-down age of the pulsar. It could be that the spin-down age were incorrect, which would call the standard vacuum dipole braking model into question. For two other pulsar companions, however, ages well over 10 Gyr are inferred, indicating that the problem may lie with the cooling models. There is no age discrepancy for models in which the white dwarfs are formed with thinner hydrogen layers ( less, similar3x10-4 M middle dot in circle). PMID:10642200

  11. Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stappers, Benjamin W.

    2012-04-01

    Pulsars can be considered as the ultimate time-variable source. They show variations on time-scales ranging from nanoseconds to as long as years, and they emit over almost the entire electromagnetic spectrum. The dominant modulation is associated with the rotation period, which can vary from slighty more than a millisecond to upwards of ten seconds (if we include the magnetars). Variations on time-scales shorter than the pulse period are mostly associated with emission processes and are manifested as giant pulses, microstructure and sub-pulses (to name a few). On time-scales of a rotation to a few hundred rotations are other phenomena also associated with the emission, such as nulling, moding, drifting and intermittency. By probing these and slightly longer time-scales we find that pulsars exhibit ``glitches'', which are rapid variations in spin rates. They are believed to be related to the interaction between the superfluid interior of the neutron star and the outer crust. Detailed studies of glitches can reveal much about the properties of the constituents of neutron stars-the only way to probe the physics of material at such extreme densities. Time-scales of about an hour or longer reveal that some pulsars are in binary systems, in particular the most rapidly rotating systems. Discovering and studying those binary systems provides vital clues to the evolution of massive stars, while some of the systems are also the best probes of strong-field gravity theories; the elusive pulsar-black hole binary would be the ultimate system. Pulsars are tools that allow us to probe a range of phenomena and time-scales. It is possible to measure the time of arrival of pulses from some pulsars to better than a few tens of nanoseconds over years, making them some of the most accurate clocks known. Concerning their rotation, deviations from sphericity may cause pulsars to emit gravitational waves which might then be detected by next-generation gravitational-wave detectors. Pulsars

  12. DISCOVERY OF AN ENERGETIC 38.5 ms PULSAR POWERING THE GAMMA-RAY SOURCE IGR J18490-0000/HESS J1849-000

    SciTech Connect

    Gotthelf, E. V.; Halpern, J. P.; Terrier, R.; Mattana, F.

    2011-03-10

    We report the discovery of a 38.5 ms X-ray pulsar in observations of the soft {gamma}-ray source IGR J18490-0000 with the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE). PSR J1849-0001 is spinning down rapidly with period derivative 1.42 x 10{sup -14} s s{sup -1}, yielding a spin-down luminosity E-dot = 9.8 x 10{sup 36} erg s{sup -1}, characteristic age {tau}{sub c}{identical_to}P/2 P-dot = 42.9 kyr, and surface dipole magnetic field strength B{sub s} = 7.5 x 10{sup 11} G. Within the INTEGRAL/IBIS error circle lies a point-like XMM-Newton and Chandra X-ray source that shows evidence of faint extended emission consistent with a pulsar wind nebula (PWN). The XMM-Newton spectrum of the point source is well fitted by an absorbed power-law model with photon index {Gamma}{sub PSR} = 1.1 {+-} 0.2, N{sub H} = (4.3 {+-} 0.6) x 10{sup 22} cm{sup -2}, and F{sub PSR}(2-10 keV) = (3.8 {+-} 0.3) x 10{sup -12} erg cm{sup -2} s{sup -1}, while the spectral parameters of the extended emission are roughly {Gamma}{sub PWN} {approx} 2.1 and F{sub PWN}(2-10 keV) {approx} 9 x 10{sup -13} erg cm{sup -2} s{sup -1}. IGR J18490-0000 is also coincident with the compact TeV source HESS J1849-000. For an assumed distance of 7 kpc in the Scutum arm tangent region, the 0.35-10 TeV luminosity of HESS J1849-000 is 0.13% of the pulsar's spin-down energy, while the ratio F(0.35-10 TeV)/F{sub PWN}(2-10 keV) {approx} 2. These properties are consistent with leptonic models of TeV emission from PWNe, with PSR J1849-0001 in a stage of transition from a synchrotron X-ray source to an inverse Compton {gamma}-ray source.

  13. The gamma-ray luminosity function of millisecond pulsars and implications for the GeV excess

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hooper, Dan; Mohlabeng, Gopolang

    2016-03-01

    It has been proposed that a large population of unresolved millisecond pulsars (MSPs) could potentially account for the excess of GeV-scale gamma-rays observed from the region surrounding the Galactic Center. The viability of this scenario depends critically on the gamma-ray luminosity function of this source population, which determines how many MSPs Fermi should have already detected as resolved point sources. In this paper, we revisit the gamma-ray luminosity function of MSPs, without relying on uncertain distance measurements. Our determination, based on a comparison of models with the observed characteristics of the MSP population, suggests that Fermi should have already detected a significant number of sources associated with such a hypothesized Inner Galaxy population. We cannot rule out a scenario in which the MSPs residing near the Galactic Center are systematically less luminous than those present in the Galactic Plane or within globular clusters.

  14. The gamma-ray luminosity function of millisecond pulsars and implications for the GeV excess

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Hooper, Dan; Mohlabeng, Gopolang

    2016-03-29

    It has been proposed that a large population of unresolved millisecond pulsars (MSPs) could potentially account for the excess of GeV-scale gamma-rays observed from the region surrounding the Galactic Center. The viability of this scenario depends critically on the gamma-ray luminosity function of this source population, which determines how many MSPs Fermi should have already detected as resolved point sources. In this paper, we revisit the gamma-ray luminosity function of MSPs, without relying on uncertain distance measurements. Our determination, based on a comparison of models with the observed characteristics of the MSP population, suggests that Fermi should have already detectedmore » a significant number of sources associated with such a hypothesized Inner Galaxy population. As a result, we cannot rule out a scenario in which the MSPs residing near the Galactic Center are systematically less luminous than those present in the Galactic Plane or within globular clusters.« less

  15. Broad-band spectral analysis of the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar SAX J1748.9-2021

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pintore, F.; Sanna, A.; Di Salvo, T.; Del Santo, M.; Riggio, A.; D'Aì, A.; Burderi, L.; Scarano, F.; Iaria, R.

    2016-04-01

    We analysed a 115-ks XMM-Newton observation and the stacking of 8 d of INTEGRAL observations, taken during the raise of the 2015 outburst of the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar SAX J1748.9-2021. The source showed numerous type-I burst episodes during the XMM-Newton observation, and for this reason we studied separately the persistent and burst epochs. We described the persistent emission with a combination of two soft thermal components, a cold thermal Comptonization component (˜2 keV) and an additional hard X-ray emission described by a power law (Γ ˜ 2.3). The continuum components can be associated with an accretion disc, the neutron star (NS) surface and a thermal Comptonization emission coming out of an optically thick plasma region, while the origin of the high-energy tail is still under debate. In addition, a number of broad (σ = 0.1-0.4 keV) emission features likely associated with reflection processes have been observed in the XMM-Newton data. The estimated 1.0-50 keV unabsorbed luminosity of the source is ˜5 × 1037 erg s-1, about 25 per cent of the Eddington limit assuming a 1.4 M⊙ NS. We suggest that the spectral properties of SAX J1748.9-2021 are consistent with a soft state, differently from many other accreting X-ray millisecond pulsars which are usually found in the hard state. Moreover, none of the observed type-I burst reached the Eddington luminosity. Assuming that the burst ignition and emission are produced above the whole NS surface, we estimate an NS radius of ˜7-8 km, consistent with previous results.

  16. Polynomial regression calculation of the Earth's position based on millisecond pulsar timing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tian, Feng; Tang, Zheng-Hong; Yan, Qing-Zeng; Yu, Yong

    2012-02-01

    Prior to achieving high precision navigation of a spacecraft using X-ray observations, a pulsar rotation model must be built and analysis of the precise position of the Earth should be performed using ground pulsar timing observations. We can simulate time-of-arrival ground observation data close to actual observed values before using pulsar timing observation data. Considering the correlation between the Earth's position and its short arc section of an orbit, we use polynomial regression to build the correlation. Regression coefficients can be calculated using the least square method, and a coordinate component series can also be obtained; that is, we can calculate Earth's position in the Barycentric Celestial Reference System according to pulse arrival time data and a precise pulsar rotation model. In order to set appropriate parameters before the actual timing observations for Earth positioning, we can calculate the influence of the spatial distribution of pulsars on errors in the positioning result and the influence of error source variation on positioning by simulation. It is significant that the threshold values of the observation and systematic errors can be established before an actual observation occurs; namely, we can determine the observation mode with small errors and reject the observed data with big errors, thus improving the positioning result.

  17. PULSE AMPLITUDE DEPENDS ON kHz QPO FREQUENCY IN THE ACCRETING MILLISECOND PULSAR SAX J1808.4-3658

    SciTech Connect

    Bult, Peter; Van der Klis, Michiel

    2015-01-10

    We study the relation between the 300-700 Hz upper kHz quasi-periodic oscillation (QPO) and the 401 Hz coherent pulsations across all outbursts of the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar SAX J1808.4-3658 observed with the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer. We find that the pulse amplitude systematically changes by a factor of ∼2 when the upper kHz QPO frequency passes through 401 Hz: it halves when the QPO moves to above the spin frequency and doubles again on the way back. This establishes for the first time the existence of a direct effect of kHz QPOs on the millisecond pulsations and provides a new clue to the origin of the upper kHz QPO. We discuss several scenarios and conclude that while more complex explanations can not formally be excluded, our result strongly suggests that the QPO is produced by azimuthal motion at the inner edge of the accretion disk, most likely orbital motion. Depending on whether this azimuthal motion is faster or slower than the spin, the plasma then interacts differently with the neutron-star magnetic field. The most straightforward interpretation involves magnetospheric centrifugal inhibition of the accretion flow that sets in when the upper kHz QPO becomes slower than the spin.

  18. Pulsed Gamma Rays from the Original Millisecond and Black Widow Pulsars: A Case for Caustic Radio Emission?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guillemot, L.; Johnson, T. J.; Venter, C.; Kerr, M.; Pancrazi, B.; Livingstone, M.; Janssen, G. H.; Jaroenjittichai, P.; Kramer, M.; Cognard, I.; Stappers, B. W.; Harding, A. K.; Camilo, F.; Espinoza, C. M.; Freire, P. C. C.; Gargano, F.; Grove, J. E.; Johnston, S.; Michelson, P. F.; Noutsos, A.; Parent, D.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Shannon, R.; Smith, D. A.

    2011-01-01

    We report the detection of pulsed gamma-ray emission from the fast millisecond pulsars (MSPs) B1937+21 (also known as J1939+2134) and B1957+20 (J1959+2048) using 18 months of survey data recorded by the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) and timing solutions based on radio observations conducted at the Westerbork and Nancay radio telescopes. In addition, we analyzed archival RXTE and XMM-Newton X-ray data for the two MSPs, confirming the X-ray emission properties of PSR B1937+21 and finding evidence (approx. 4(sigma)) for pulsed emission from PSR B1957+20 for the first time. In both cases the gamma-ray emission profile is characterized by two peaks separated by half a rotation and are in close alignment with components observed in radio and X-rays. These two pulsars join PSRs J0034..0534 and J2214+3000 to form an emerging class of gamma-ray MSPs with phase-aligned peaks in different energy bands. The modeling of the radio and gamma-ray emission pro les suggests co-located emission regions in the outer magnetosphere.

  19. Excitation of a non-radial mode in a millisecond X-ray pulsar XTE J1751-305

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Umin

    2014-08-01

    We discuss non-radial modes in mass-accreting and rapidly rotating neutron stars for the coherent frequency detected in a millisecond X-ray pulsar XTE J1751-305. The spin frequency of the pulsar is νspin ≅ 435 Hz and the identified frequency is νosc = 0.572 7595 × νspin. Assuming that the frequency detected is that in the corotating frame of the star, we examine r and g modes in the surface layer of accreting matter composed mostly of helium, inertial and r modes in the fluid core, and toroidal modes in the solid crust. We find that the r modes of l' = m = 1 and 2 excited by ɛ-mechanism in the surface layer can give the ratio κ = νosc/νspin ≃ 0.57 at νspin = 435 Hz, where m and l' are the azimuthal wavenumber and the harmonic degree of the modes. We also suggest a toroidal crust mode and a core r mode destabilized by gravitational wave emission for the observed ratio κ. We find that the amplitude of the core r mode of l' = m = 2 can be amplified at the surface layer by a large factor famp ˜ 102 at νspin = 435 Hz for a M = 1.4 M⊙ neutron-star model. This amplification, however, may not be large enough for the r-mode amplitude to be consistent with an estimation by Mahmoodifar & Strohmayer (2013).

  20. Radiation-driven evolution of low-mass x-ray binaries and the formation of millisecond pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Tavani, M. California Univ., Berkeley, CA . Dept. of Astronomy)

    1991-08-08

    Recent data on low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs) and millisecond pulsars (MSPs) pose a challenge to evolutionary theories which neglect the effects of disk and comparison irradiation. Here we discuss the main features of a radiation-driven (RD) evolutionary model that may be applicable to several LMXBs. According to this model, radiation from the accreting compact star in LMXBs vaporizes'' the accretion disk and the companion star by driving a self-sustained mass loss until a sudden accretion-turn off occurs. The main characteristics of the RD-evolution are: (1) lifetime of RD-LMXB's is of order 10{sup 7} years or less; (2) both the orbital period gap and the X-ray luminosity may be consequences of RD-evolution of LMXB's containing lower main sequence and degeneration companion stars; (3) the companion star may transfer mass to the primary even if it underfills its Roche lobe; (4) a class of recycled MSPs can continue to vaporize the low-mass companions by a strong pulsar wind even after the accretion turn-off; (5) the RD-evolutionary model resolves the apparent statistical descrepancy between the number of MSPs and their LMXB progenitors in the Galaxy. We discuss the implications of the discovery of single MSPs in low-density globular clusters and the recent measurements of short orbital timescales of four LMXBs. 34 refs., 3 figs., 2 tabs.

  1. Millisecond pulsars and the Galactic Center gamma-ray excess: the importance of luminosity function and secondary emission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petrović, Jovana; Serpico, Pasquale D.; Zaharijas, Gabrijela

    2015-02-01

    Several groups of authors have analyzed Fermi LAT data in a region around the Galactic Center finding an unaccounted gamma-ray excess over diffuse backgrounds in the GeV energy range. It has been argued that it is difficult or even impossible to explain this diffuse emission by the leading astrophysical candidates—millisecond pulsars (MSPs). Here we provide a new estimate of the contribution to the excess by a population of yet unresolved MSP located in the bulge of the Milky Way. We simulate this population with the GALPLOT package by adopting a parametric approach, with the range of free parameters gauged on the MSP characteristics reported by the second pulsar catalogue (2PC). We find that the conclusions strongly depend on the details of the MSP luminosity function (in particular, its high luminosity end) and other explicit or tacit assumptions on the MSP statistical properties, which we discuss. Notably, for the first time we study the importance of the possible secondary emission of the MSPs in the Galactic Center, i.e. the emission via inverse Compton losses of electrons injected in the interstellar medium. Differently from a majority of other authors, we find that within current uncertainties a large if not dominant contribution of MSPs to the excess cannot be excluded. We also show that the sensitivities of future instruments or possibly already of the latest LAT data analysis (Pass 8) provide good perspectives to test this scenario by resolving a significant number of MSPs.

  2. Discovery of the Accretion-Powered Millisecond Pulsar SWIFT 51756.9-2508 with a Low-Mass Companion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krimm, H.A.; Markwardt, C.B.; Deloye, C.J.; Romano, P.; Chakrabarty, S.; Campana. S.; Cummings, J.C.; Galloway, D.K.; Gehrels, N.; Hartman, J.M.; Kaaret, P.; Morgan, E.H.; Tueller, J

    2007-01-01

    We report on the discovery by the Swift Gamma-Ray Burst Explorer of the eighth known transient accretion-powered millisecond pulsar: SWIFT J1756.9-2508, as part of routine observations with the Swift Burst Alert Telescope hard X-ray transient monitor. The pulsar was subsequently observed by both the X-Ray Telescope on Swift and the Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer Proportional Counter Array. It has a spin frequency of 182 Hz (5.5 ms) and an orbital period of 54.7 minutes. The minimum companion mass is between 0.0067 and 0.0086 Solar Mass, depending on the mass of the neutron star, and the upper limit on the mass is 0.030 Solar Mass (95% confidence level). Such a low mass is inconsistent with brown dwarf models. and comparison with white dwarf models suggests that the companion is a He-dominated donor whose thermal cooling has been at least modestly slowed by irradiation from the accretion flux. No X-ray bursts. dips, eclipses or quasi-periodic oscillations were detected. The current outburst lasted approx. 13 days and no earlier outbursts were found in archival data.

  3. The NANOGrav Nine-year Data Set: Observations, Arrival Time Measurements, and Analysis of 37 Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    The NANOGrav Collaboration; Arzoumanian, Zaven; Brazier, Adam; Burke-Spolaor, Sarah; Chamberlin, Sydney; Chatterjee, Shami; Christy, Brian; Cordes, James M.; Cornish, Neil; Crowter, Kathryn; Demorest, Paul B.; Dolch, Timothy; Ellis, Justin A.; Ferdman, Robert D.; Fonseca, Emmanuel; Garver-Daniels, Nathan; Gonzalez, Marjorie E.; Jenet, Fredrick A.; Jones, Glenn; Jones, Megan L.; Kaspi, Victoria M.; Koop, Michael; Lam, Michael T.; Lazio, T. Joseph W.; Levin, Lina; Lommen, Andrea N.; Lorimer, Duncan R.; Luo, Jing; Lynch, Ryan S.; Madison, Dustin; McLaughlin, Maura A.; McWilliams, Sean T.; Nice, David J.; Palliyaguru, Nipuni; Pennucci, Timothy T.; Ransom, Scott M.; Siemens, Xavier; Stairs, Ingrid H.; Stinebring, Daniel R.; Stovall, Kevin; Swiggum, Joseph K.; Vallisneri, Michele; van Haasteren, Rutger; Wang, Yan; Zhu, Weiwei

    2015-11-01

    We present high-precision timing observations spanning up to nine years for 37 millisecond pulsars monitored with the Green Bank and Arecibo radio telescopes as part of the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves (NANOGrav) project. We describe the observational and instrumental setups used to collect the data, and methodology applied for calculating pulse times of arrival; these include novel methods for measuring instrumental offsets and characterizing low signal-to-noise ratio timing results. The time of arrival data are fit to a physical timing model for each source, including terms that characterize time-variable dispersion measure and frequency-dependent pulse shape evolution. In conjunction with the timing model fit, we have performed a Bayesian analysis of a parameterized timing noise model for each source, and detect evidence for excess low-frequency, or “red,” timing noise in 10 of the pulsars. For 5 of these cases this is likely due to interstellar medium propagation effects rather than intrisic spin variations. Subsequent papers in this series will present further analysis of this data set aimed at detecting or limiting the presence of nanohertz-frequency gravitational wave signals.

  4. Timing and Fermi LAT Analysis of Four Millisecond Pulsars Discovered in Parkes Radio Searches of Gamma-ray Sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, Paul S.; Ransom, Scott M.; Camilo, Fernando M.; Kerr, Matthew; Reynolds, John; Sarkissian, John; Freire, Paulo; Thankful Cromartie, H.; Barr, Ewan D.

    2016-01-01

    We present phase-connected timing solutions for four binary millisecond pulsars discovered in searches of Fermi LAT gamma-ray sources using the Parkes radio telescope. Follow-up timing observations of PSRs J0955-6150, J1012-4235, J1036-8317, and J1946-5403 have yielded timing models with precise orbital and astrometric parameters. For each pulsar, we also did a gamma-ray spectral analysis using LAT Pass 8 data and generated photon probabilities for use in a weighted H-test pulsation test. In all 4 cases, we detect significant gamma-ray pulsations, confirming the identification with the gamma-ray source originally targeted in the discovery observations. We describe the results of the pulse timing and gamma-ray spectral and timing analysis and the characteristics of each of the systems. The Fermi-LAT Collaboration acknowledges support for LAT development, operation and data analysis from NASA and DOE (United States), CEA/Irfu and IN2P3/CNRS (France), ASI and INFN (Italy), MEXT, KEK, and JAXA (Japan), and the K.A. Wallenberg Foundation, the Swedish Research Council and the National Space Board (Sweden). Science analysis support in the operations phase from INAF (Italy) and CNES (France) is also gratefully acknowledged. NRL participation was funded by NASA.

  5. TeV gamma-ray emission initiated by the population or individual millisecond pulsars within globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bednarek, W.; Sitarek, J.; Sobczak, T.

    2016-05-01

    Two energetic millisecond pulsars (MSPs) within globular clusters (GCs), J1823-3021A in NGC 6624 and PSR B1821-24 in M28, have been recently discovered to emit pulsed GeV γ-rays. These MSPs are expected to eject energetic leptons. Therefore, GCs have been proposed to produce GeV-TeV γ-rays as a result of the Comptonization process of the background radiation within a GC. We develop this general scenario by taking into account not only the diffusion process of leptons within a GC but also their advection with the wind from the GC. Moreover, we consider distribution of MSP within a GC and the effects related to the non-central location of the dominating, energetic MSP. Such more complete scenario is considered for the modelling of the GeV-TeV γ-ray emission from the core-collapsed GC M15 and also for GCs which contain recently discovered energetic MSPs within NGC 6624 and M28. The confrontation of the modelling of the γ-ray emission with the observations with the present Cherenkov telescopes and the future Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA) allows us to constrain more reliably the efficiency of lepton production within the inner magnetosphere of the MSPs and re-accelerated in their vicinity. We discuss the expected limits on this parameter in the context of expectations from the pulsar models. We conclude that deep observations of GCs, even with the present sensitivity of Cherenkov telescopes (the High Energy Stereoscopic System, the Major Atmospheric Gamma-Ray Imaging Cherenkov, the Very Energetic Radiation Imaging Telescope Array System), should start to constrain the models for the acceleration and radiation processes of leptons within the inner pulsar magnetosphere and its surrounding.

  6. Multiwavelength Observations of the Redback Millisecond Pulsar J1048+2339

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deneva, J. S.; Ray, P. S.; Camilo, F.; Halpern, J. P.; Wood, K.; Cromartie, H. T.; Ferrara, E.; Kerr, M.; Ransom, S. M.; Wolff, M. T.; Chambers, K. C.; Magnier, E. A.

    2016-06-01

    We report on radio timing and multiwavelength observations of the 4.66 ms redback pulsar J1048+2339, which was discovered in an Arecibo search targeting the Fermi-Large Area Telescope source 3FGL J1048.6+2338. Two years of timing allowed us to derive precise astrometric and orbital parameters for the pulsar. PSR J1048+2339 is in a 6 hr binary and exhibits radio eclipses over half the orbital period and rapid orbital period variations. The companion has a minimum mass of 0.3 M ⊙, and we have identified a V ∼ 20 variable optical counterpart in data from several surveys. The phasing of its ∼1 mag modulation at the orbital period suggests highly efficient and asymmetric heating by the pulsar wind, which may be due to an intrabinary shock that is distorted near the companion, or to the companion’s magnetic field channeling the pulsar wind to specific locations on its surface. We also present gamma-ray spectral analysis of the source and preliminary results from searches for gamma-ray pulsations using the radio ephemeris.

  7. Spectroscopic observations of the counterpart of IGR J00291+5934

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roelofs, G.; Jonker, P. G.; Steeghs, D.; Torres, M.; Nelemans, G.

    2004-12-01

    Spectroscopic observations of the optical counterpart of the millisecond X-ray pulsar IGR J00291+5934 (Atel #352, 353) reported in an Atel by Fox & Kulkarni were obtained (Dec 5 00:29-01:15 UT) with the ISIS spectrograph mounted on the 4.2m William Herschel Telescope on La Palma. Weather conditions were not optimal with a seeing of ~2" and thin clouds. The spectra show weak evidence for broad emission line features near the HeII line at 4686 Angstrom and near the Halpha line at 6563 Angstrom.

  8. Soft X-Ray Properties of the Binary Millisecond Pulsar J0437-4715

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, Jules P.; Martin, Christopher; Marshall, Herman, L.; Oliversen, Ronald (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    We obtained a light curve for the 5.75 ms pulsar J0437-4715 in the 65-120 A range with 0.5 ms time resolution using the Deep Survey instrument on the EUVE satellite. The single-peaked profile has a pulsed fraction of 0.27 +/- 0.05, similar to the ROSAT data in the overlapping energy band. A combined analysis of the EUVE and ROSAT data is consistent with a power-law spectrum of energy index alpha = 1.2 - 1.5, intervening column density N(sub H) = (5 - 8) x 10(exp 19)/sq cm, and luminosity 5.0 x 10(exp 30) ergs/s in the 0.1 - 2.4 keV band. We also use a bright EUVE/ROSAT source only 4.2 min. from the pulsar, the Seyfert galaxy RX J0437.4-4711 (= EUVE J0437-471 = IES 0435-472), to obtain an independent upper limit on the intervening absorption to the pulsar, N(sub H) less than 1.2 x 10(exp 20)/sq cm. Although a blackbody spectrum fails to fit the ROSAT data, two-component spectral fits to the combined EUVE/ROSAT data are used to limit the temperatures and surface areas of thermal emission that might make partial contributions to the flux. A hot polar cap of radius 50 - 600 m and temperature (1.0 - 3.3) x 10(exp 6) K could be present. Alternatively, a larger region with T = (4 - 12) x 10(exp 5) K and area less than 200 sq km, might contribute most of the EUVE and soft X-ray flux, but only if a hotter component were present as well. Any of these temperatures would require some mechanism(s) of surface reheating to be operating in this old pulsar, the most plausible being the impact of accelerated electrons and positrons onto the polar caps. The kinematically corrected spin-down power of PSR J0437-4715 is only 4 x 10(exp 33) ergs/s, which is an order of magnitude less than that of the lowest-luminosity gamma-ray pulsars Geminga and PSR B1055-52. The absence of high-energy gamma-rays from PSR J0437-4715 might signify an inefficient or dead outer gap accelerator, which in turn accounts for the lack of a more luminous reheated surface such as those intermediate-age gamma

  9. Soft x-ray properties of the binary millisecond pulsar J0437-4715

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, Jules P.; Martin, Christopher; Marshall, Herman L.

    1995-01-01

    We obtained a light curve for the 5.75 ms pulsar J0437-4715 in the 65-120 A range with 0.5 ms time resolution using the Deep Survey instrument on the EUVE satellite. The single-peaked profile has a pulsed fraction of 0. 27 +/- 0.05, similar to the ROSAT data in the overlapping energy band. A combined analysis of the EUVE and ROSAT data is consistent with a power-law spectrum of energy index alpha = 1.2-1.5, intervening column density NH = (5-8) x 10(exp 19)/sq cm, and luminosity 5.0 x 10(exp 30) ergs/s in the 0.1-2. 4 keV band. We also use a bright EUVE/ROSAT source only 4.3 deg from the pulsar, the Seyfert galaxy RX J0437.4-4711 (= EUVE J0437-471 = lES 0435-472), to obtain an independent upper limit on the intervening absorption to the pulsar, NH less than 1.2 x 10(exp 20)/sq cm. Although a blackbody spectrum fails to fit the ROSAT data, two-component spectral fits to the combined EUVE/ROSAT data are used to limit the temperatures and surface areas of thermal emission that might make partial contributions to the flux. A hot polar cap of radius 50-600 m and temperature (1.0-3.3) x 10(exp 6) K could be present. Alternatively, a larger region with T = (4-12) x 10(exp 5) K and area less than 200 sq km, might contribute most of the EUVE and soft X-ray flux, but only if a hotter component were present as well. Any of these temperatures would require some mechanism(s) of surface reheating to be operating in this old pulsar, the most plausible being the impact of accelerated electrons and positrons onto the polar caps. The kinematically corrected spin-down power of PSR J0437-4715 is only 4 x 10(exp 33) ergs/s, which is an order of magnitude less than that of the lowest-luminosity gamma-ray pulsars Geminga and PSR B1055-52. The absence of high-energy gamma-rays from PSR J0437-4715 might signify an inefficient or dead outer gap accelerator, which in turn accounts for the lack of a more luminous reheated surface such as those intermediate-age gamma-ray pulsars may have.

  10. New measurements of the 12. 6 millisecond pulsar in Cygnus X-3

    SciTech Connect

    Brazier, K.T.S.; Carraminana, A.; Chadwick, P.M.; Dipper, N.A.; Lincoln, E.W. )

    1990-02-01

    Evidence for a 12.59 ms pulsar in Cygnus X-3 is presented on the basis of TeV gamma-ray observations. Evidence for pulsed emission at a phase in the 4.8 hr cycle and with a pulsar period and secular period derivative are compatible with earlier measurements (Chadwick et al., 1985). The conservative overall Rayleigh probability of uniformity of phase for this new result is 1.7 x 10 to the -6th. Data from observations of Cygnus X-3 from 1981 to 1985 are analyzed using a new X-ray ephemeris of the 4.8 hr X-ray cycle. This suggests that Cygnus X-3 is producing sporadic very high energy gamma rays at a fixed time in the 4.8 hr X-ray cycle. 28 refs.

  11. Multi-wavelength properties of IGR J05007-7047 (LXP 38.55) and identification as a Be X-ray binary pulsar in the LMC

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasilopoulos, G.; Haberl, F.; Delvaux, C.; Sturm, R.; Udalski, A.

    2016-09-01

    We report on the results of a ˜40-d multi-wavelength monitoring of the Be X-ray binary system IGR J05007-7047 (LXP 38.55). During that period the system was monitored in the X-rays using the Swift telescope and in the optical with multiple instruments. When the X-ray luminosity exceeded 1036 erg s-1 we triggered an XMM-Newton ToO observation. Timing analysis of the photon events collected during the XMM-Newton observation reveals coherent X-ray pulsations with a period of 38.551(3) s (1σ), making it the 17th known high-mass X-ray binary pulsar in the LMC. During the outburst, the X-ray spectrum is fitted best with a model composed of an absorbed power law (Γ = 0.63) plus a high-temperature blackbody (kT ˜2 keV) component. By analysing ˜12 yr of available OGLE optical data we derived a 30.776(5) d optical period, confirming the previously reported X-ray period of the system as its orbital period. During our X-ray monitoring the system showed limited optical variability while its IR flux varied in phase with the X-ray luminosity, which implies the presence of a disc-like component adding cooler light to the spectral energy distribution of the system.

  12. Variability Profiles of Millisecond X-Ray Pulsars: Results of Pseudo-Newtonian Three-dimensional Magnetohydrodynamic Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kulkarni, A. K.; Romanova, M. M.

    2005-11-01

    We model the variability profiles of millisecond-period X-ray pulsars. We performed three-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic simulations of disk accretion to millisecond-period neutron stars with a misaligned magnetic dipole moment, using the pseudo-Newtonian Paczyński-Wiita potential to model general relativistic effects. We found that the shapes of the resulting funnel streams of accreting matter and the hot spots on the surface of the star are quite similar to those for more slowly rotating stars obtained from earlier simulations using the Newtonian potential. The funnel streams and hot spots rotate approximately with the same angular velocity as the star. The spots are bow-shaped (bar-shaped) for small (large) misalignment angles. We found that the matter falling on the star has a higher Mach number when we use the Paczyński-Wiita potential than in the Newtonian case. Having obtained the surface distribution of the emitted flux, we calculated the variability curves of the star, taking into account general relativistic, Doppler, and light-travel time effects. We found that general relativistic effects decrease the pulse fraction (flatten the light curve), while Doppler and light-travel time effects increase it and distort the light curve. We also found that the light curves from our hot spots are reproduced reasonably well by spots with a Gaussian flux distribution centered at the magnetic poles. We also calculated the observed image of the star in a few cases and saw that for certain orientations, both the antipodal hot spots are simultaneously visible, as noted by earlier authors.

  13. Search for Pulsations from a Nearby Millisecond Pulsar and Wasilewski 49: Mirror for a Hidden Seyfert 1 Nucleus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halpern, Jules P.

    1999-01-01

    Five studies are reported in this final report. The recently discovered 5.3 ms pulsar J1012+5307 at a distance of 520 pc is in an area of the sky which is particularly deficient in absorbing gas. The column density along the line of sight is less than 7.5 x 10(exp 19) CM(exp -2) which facilitates soft X-ray observations. Halpern reported a possible ROSAT Position Sensitive Proportional Counter (PSPC) detection of the pulsar in a serendipitous, off-axis observation. We have now confirmed the X-ray emission of PSR J1012+,5307 in a 23 ksec observation with the ROSAT High Resolution Imager (HRI). A point source is detected within 3" of the radio position. Its count rate of 1.6 +/- 0.3 x 10(exp -3) s(exp -1) corresponds to an unabsorbed 0. 1-2.4 keV flux of 6.4 x 10(exp -14) ergs cm(exp -2) s(exp -1), similar to that reported previously. This counts-to-flux conversion is valid for N(sub H) = 5 x 10(exp 19) cm(exp -2), and either a power-law spectrum of photon index 2.5 or a blackbody of kT = 0.1 keV. The implied X-ray luminosity of 2.0 x 10(exp 30) ergs s(exp -1) is 5 X 10(exp -4) of the pulsar's spin-down power dot-E, and similar to that of the nearest millisecond pulsar J0437-4715, which is nearly a twin of J1012+5307 in P dot-E. We subjected the 37 photons (and 13 background counts) within the source region to a pulsar search, but no evidence for pulsation was found. The pulsar apparently emits over a large fraction of its rotation cycle, and the absence of sharp modulation can be taken as evidence for surface thermal emission, as is favored for PSR J0437-4715, rather than magnetospheric X-ray emission which is apparent in the sharp pulses of the much more energetic millisecond pulsar B1821-24. A further test of this interpretation will be made with a longer ROSAT observation, which will increase the number of photons collected by a factor of 5, and permit a more sensitive examination of the light curve for modulation due to emission from heated polar caps. If found

  14. ON THE FORMATION OF THE PECULIAR LOW-MASS X-RAY BINARY IGR J17480-2446 IN TERZAN 5

    SciTech Connect

    Jiang Long; Li Xiangdong

    2013-07-20

    IGR J17480-2446 is an accreting X-ray pulsar in a low-mass X-ray binary harbored in the Galactic globular cluster Terzan 5. Compared with other accreting millisecond pulsars, IGR J17480-2446 is peculiar for its low spin frequency (11 Hz), which suggests that it might be a mildly recycled neutron star at the very early phase of mass transfer. However, this model seems to be in contrast with the low field strength deduced from the kilo-Hertz quasi-periodic oscillations observed in IGR J17480-2446. Here, we suggest an alternative interpretation, assuming that the current binary system was formed during an exchange encounter either between a binary (which contains a recycled neutron star) and the current donor, or between a binary and an isolated, recycled neutron star. In the resulting binary, the spin axis of the neutron star could be parallel or anti-parallel with the orbital axis. In the latter case, the abnormally low frequency of IGR J17480-2446 may result from the spin-down to spin-up evolution of the neutron star. We also briefly discuss the possible observational implications of the pulsar in this scenario.

  15. DISCOVERY OF ECLIPSES FROM THE ACCRETING MILLISECOND X-RAY PULSAR SWIFT J1749.4-2807

    SciTech Connect

    Markwardt, C. B.; Strohmayer, T. E.

    2010-07-10

    We report the discovery of X-ray eclipses in the recently discovered accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar SWIFT J1749.4-2807. This is the first detection of X-ray eclipses in a system of this type and should enable a precise neutron star mass measurement once the companion star is identified and studied. We present a combined pulse and eclipse timing solution that enables tight constraints on the orbital parameters and inclination and shows that the companion mass is in the range 0.6-0.8 M{sub sun} for a likely range of neutron star masses, and that it is larger than a main-sequence star of the same mass. We observed two individual eclipse egresses and a single ingress. Our timing model shows that the eclipse features are symmetric about the time of 90{sup 0} longitude from the ascending node, as expected. Our eclipse timing solution gives an eclipse duration (from the mid-points of ingress to egress) of 2172 {+-} 13 s. This represents 6.85% of the 8.82 hr orbital period. This system also presents a potential measurement of 'Shapiro' delay due to general relativity; through this technique alone, we set an upper limit to the companion mass of 2.2 M{sub sun}.

  16. Five New Millisecond Pulsars from a Radio Survey of 14 Unidentified Fermi-LAT Gamma-Ray Sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kerr, M.; Camilo, F.; Johnson, T. J.; Ferrara, E. C.; Guillemot, L.; Harding, A. K.; Hessels, J.; Johnson, S.; Keith, M.; Kramer, M.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Reynolds, J. E.; Sarkissian, J.; Wood, K. S.

    2012-01-01

    We have discovered five millisecond pulsars (MSPs) in a survey of 14 unidentified Ferm;'LAT sources in the southern sky using the Parkes radio telescope. PSRs J0101-6422, J1514-4946, and J1902-5105 reside in binaries, while PSRs J1658-5324 and J1747-4036 are isolated. Using an ephemeris derived from timing observations of PSR JOl01-6422 (P=2.57ms, DH=12pc/cubic cm ), we have detected gamma-ray pulsations and measured its proper motion. Its gamma-ray spectrum (a power law of Gamma = 0.9 with a cutoff at 1.6 GeV) and efficiency are typical of other MSPs, but its radio and gamma-ray light curves challenge simple geometric models of emission. The high success rate of this survey -- enabled by selecting gamma-ray sources based on their detailed spectral characteristics -- and other similarly successful searches indicate that a substantial fraction of the local population of MSPs may soon be known.

  17. A Chandra look at the X-ray faint millisecond pulsars in the globular cluster NGC 6752

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forestell, L. M.; Heinke, C. O.; Cohn, H. N.; Lugger, P. M.; Sivakoff, G. R.; Bogdanov, S.; Cool, A. M.; Anderson, J.

    2014-06-01

    We combine new and archival Chandra observations of the globular cluster NGC 6752 to create a deeper X-ray source list, and study the faint radio millisecond pulsars (MSPs) of this cluster. We detect four of the five MSPs in NGC 6752, and present evidence for emission from the fifth. The X-rays from these MSPs are consistent with thermal emission from the neutron star surfaces, with significantly higher fitted blackbody temperatures than other globular cluster MSPs (though we cannot rule out contamination by non-thermal emission or other X-ray sources). NGC 6752 E is one of the lowest-LX MSPs known, with LX(0.3-8 keV) = 1.0^{+0.9}_{-0.5}× 10^{30} erg s-1. We check for optical counterparts of the three isolated MSPs in the core using new Hubble Space Telescope Advanced Camera for Surveys images, finding no plausible counterparts, which is consistent with their lack of binary companions. We compile measurements of LX and spin-down power for radio MSPs from the literature, including errors where feasible. We find no evidence that isolated MSPs have lower LX than MSPs in binary systems, omitting binary MSPs showing emission from intrabinary wind shocks. We find weak evidence for an inverse correlation between the estimated temperature of the MSP X-rays and the known MSP spin period, consistent with the predicted shrinking of the MSP polar cap size with increasing spin period.

  18. ACCRETION TORQUES AND MOTION OF THE HOT SPOT ON THE ACCRETING MILLISECOND PULSAR XTE J1807-294

    SciTech Connect

    Patruno, Alessandro; Wijnands, R.; Van der Klis, Michiel; Hartman, Jacob M.; Chakrabarty, Deepto

    2010-07-10

    We present a coherent timing analysis of the 2003 outburst of the accreting millisecond pulsar (AMXP) XTE J1807-294. We find a 95% confidence interval for the pulse frequency derivative of (+0.7, + 4.7) x 10{sup -14} Hz s{sup -1} and (-0.6, + 3.8) x 10{sup -14} Hz s{sup -1} for the fundamental and second harmonics, respectively. The sinusoidal fractional amplitudes of the pulsations are the highest observed among AMXPs and can reach values of up to 27% (2.5-30 keV). The pulse arrival time residuals of the fundamental frequency follow a linear anti-correlation with the fractional amplitudes that suggests hot spot motion both in longitude and latitude over the surface of the neutron star. An anti-correlation between residuals and X-ray flux suggests an influence of the accretion rate on pulse phase and casts doubts on the interpretation of pulse frequency derivatives in terms of changes of spin rates and torques on the neutron star.

  19. FIVE NEW MILLISECOND PULSARS FROM A RADIO SURVEY OF 14 UNIDENTIFIED FERMI-LAT GAMMA-RAY SOURCES

    SciTech Connect

    Kerr, M.; Camilo, F.; Johnson, T. J.; Ferrara, E. C.; Harding, A. K.; Guillemot, L.; Kramer, M.; Hessels, J.; Johnston, S.; Keith, M.; Reynolds, J. E.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Wood, K. S.; Sarkissian, J. E-mail: fernando@astro.columbia.edu

    2012-03-20

    We have discovered five millisecond pulsars (MSPs) in a survey of 14 unidentified Fermi Large Area Telescope sources in the southern sky using the Parkes radio telescope. PSRs J0101-6422, J1514-4946, and J1902-5105 reside in binaries, while PSRs J1658-5324 and J1747-4036 are isolated. Using an ephemeris derived from timing observations of PSR J0101-6422 (P = 2.57 ms, DM = 12 pc cm{sup -3}), we have detected {gamma}-ray pulsations and measured its proper motion. Its {gamma}-ray spectrum (a power law of {Gamma} = 0.9 with a cutoff at 1.6 GeV) and efficiency are typical of other MSPs, but its radio and {gamma}-ray light curves challenge simple geometric models of emission. The high success rate of this survey-enabled by selecting {gamma}-ray sources based on their detailed spectral characteristics-and other similarly successful searches indicate that a substantial fraction of the local population of MSPs may soon be known.

  20. Discovery of Eclipses from the Accreting Millisecond X-Ray Pulsar Swift J1749.4-2807

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Markwardt, C. B.; Stromhmayer, T. E.

    2010-01-01

    We report the discovery of X-ray eclipses in the recently discovered accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar SWIFT J1749.4-2807. This is the first detection of X-ray eclipses in a system of this type and should enable a precise neutron star mass measurement once the companion star is identified and studied. We present a combined pulse and eclipse timing solution that enables tight constraints on the orbital parameters and inclination and shows that the companion mass is in the range 0.6-0.8 solar mass for a likely range of neutron star masses, and that it is larger than a main-sequence star of the same mass. We observed two individual eclipse egresses and a single ingress. Our timing model shows that the eclipse features are symmetric about the time of 90 longitude from the ascending node, as expected. Our eclipse timing solution gives an eclipse duration (from the mid-points of ingress to egress) of 2172+/-13 s. This represents 6.85% of the 8.82 hr orbital period. This system also presents a potential measurement of "Shapiro" delay due to general relativity; through this technique alone, we set an upper limit to the companion mass of 2.2 Solar mass .

  1. DISCOVERY OF AN ACCRETING MILLISECOND PULSAR IN THE ECLIPSING BINARY SYSTEM SWIFT J1749.4-2807

    SciTech Connect

    Altamirano, D.; Cavecchi, Y.; Patruno, A.; Watts, A.; Degenaar, N.; Kalamkar, M.; Van der Klis, M.; Armas Padilla, M.; Kaur, R.; Yang, Y. J.; Wijnands, R.; Linares, M.; Rea, N.; Casella, P.; Soleri, P.

    2011-01-20

    We report on the discovery and the timing analysis of the first eclipsing accretion-powered millisecond X-ray pulsar (AMXP): SWIFT J1749.4-2807. The neutron star rotates at a frequency of {approx}517.9 Hz and is in a binary system with an orbital period of 8.8 hr and a projected semimajor axis of {approx}1.90 lt-s. Assuming a neutron star between 0.8 and 2.2 M{sub sun} and using the mass function of the system and the eclipse half-angle, we constrain the mass of the companion and the inclination of the system to be in the {approx}0.46-0.81 M{sub sun} and {approx} 74.{sup 0}4-77.{sup 0}3 range, respectively. To date, this is the tightest constraint on the orbital inclination of any AMXP. As in other AMXPs, the pulse profile shows harmonic content up to the third overtone. However, this is the first AMXP to show a first overtone with rms amplitudes between {approx}6% and {approx}23%, which is the strongest ever seen and which can be more than two times stronger than the fundamental. The fact that SWIFT J1749.4-2807 is an eclipsing system that shows uncommonly strong harmonic content suggests that it might be the best source to date to set constraints on neutron star properties including compactness and geometry.

  2. On Gravitational Wave Limit Determination in the 10 micro-Hertz to 20 milli-Hertz Band Using Millisecond Pulsar Timing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dolch, Timothy; Chatterjee, Shami; Cordes, James M.; Lam, Michael T.; Madison, Dustin Ray; Nanograv Collaboration

    2015-01-01

    Continuous pulsar timing observations over a 24-hr period provide a method for probing intermediate gravitational wave (GW) frequencies of 10 micro-Hertz to 20 milli-Hertz. Despite the fact that we expect no particularly strong GW sources at these GW frequencies typically associated with eLISA, there are nonetheless no current constraints from pulsar timing arrays (PTAs) in the 10 micro-Hertz regime. The North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves (NANOGrav), the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array, the European Pulsar Timing Array, and the entire International Pulsar Timing Array all use millisecond pulsar observations to constrain GWs at nano-Hz frequencies. PTAs have also been shown to be well-suited for probing GWs at frequencies from approximately 1 nano-Hertz to 10 micro-Hertz. We show a calculation that takes into account the changes in time-of-arrival precision vs. time due to interstellar scintillation modulations and to different telescope sensitivities. In the case of the J1713 24-Hour Global Campaign (Dolch & Lam et al. 2014), a continuous set of broadband timing residuals from PSR J1713+0747, the negligible change in dispersion measure allows for a white noise model to be used with the timing residuals in order to constrain any contributions from GWs. Finally, we show that improved GW strain limits at GW frequencies ~10 micro-Hertz can be obtained with simultaneous, dense timing campaigns using large collecting area telescopes, with one telescope per pulsar. The PTA limits are higher than those obtained using Cassini Doppler tracking but can be improved by simultaneous, continuous observations of multiple pulsars.

  3. Searching for Pulsations from a Helium White Dwarf Companion to a Millisecond Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bildsten, Lars

    2009-07-01

    The low mass white dwarf {WD} companion to the 3.26 ms pulsar PSR J1911-5958A offers an unprecedented opportunity for seismological study of the interior of a helium core WD. While much more massive carbon/oxygen core WDs are observed to pulsate in normal modes of oscillation called g-modes {known as ZZ Ceti stars}, no helium core pulsator is known. By extrapolating the boundaries of the ZZ Ceti instability strip downward in surface gravity by a factor of 20 below any known pulsator, we find that the effective temperature of this WD makes it an excellent candidate to search for pulsation. Detection of g-mode pulsations in the lightcurve would have a transformative effect on the field of WD pulsations, as this would allow the first seismological study of the interior of a helium core WD, and the low gravity strongly constrains theories for the driving and amplitudes of pulsations. We show that with 3 orbits of HST, we will detect photometric variations with amplitudes of 1%, lower than typically seen in other hydrogen-dominated ZZ Ceti stars. A set of measured mode periods would also constrain the thickness of the presumed stably hydrogen burning shell, and help us determine its age more securely.

  4. NuSTAR discovers a cyclotron line and reveals the spinning up of the accreting X-ray pulsar IGR J16393-4643

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bodaghee, Arash; Tomsick, John; Fornasini, Francesca; Krivonos, Roman; Stern, Daniel; Mori, Kaya; Rahoui, Farid; Boggs, Steven E.; Christensen, Finn; Craig, William W.; Hailey, Charles James; Harrison, Fiona; Zhang, William

    2016-04-01

    After several misclassifications, IGR J16393-4643 is now known to be a high-mass X-ray binary consisting of a heavily-absorbed pulsar that is likely paired with a massive and distant B star. It was observed for 50-ks by NuSTAR in the 3--79 keV energy band, complemented by a contemporaneous 2-ks observation with Swift-XRT. These observations enabled the discovery of a cyclotron resonant scattering feature with a centroid energy of 29.3(+1.1/-1.3) keV. This allowed us to measure the magnetic field strength of the neutron star for the first time: B = (2.5±0.1)×1012 G. The known pulsation period is now observed at 904.0±0.1 s. Since 2006, the neutron star has undergone a long-term spin-up trend at a rate of dP/dt = -2×10-8 s s-1 (-0.6 s per year, or a frequency derivative of dν/dt = 3×10-14 Hz s-1). In the power density spectrum, a break appears at the pulse frequency which separates the zero slope at low frequency from the steeper slope at high frequency. This addition of angular momentum to the neutron star could be due to the accretion of a quasi-spherical wind, or it could be caused by the transient appearance of a prograde accretion disk that is nearly in corotation with the neutron star whose magnetospheric radius is around 2×108 cm.

  5. NuSTAR observations of the state transition of millisecond pulsar binary PSR J1023+0038

    SciTech Connect

    Tendulkar, Shriharsh P.; Bellm, Eric; Harrison, Fiona A.; Yang, Chengwei; An, Hongjun; Kaspi, Victoria M.; Archibald, Anne M.; Bassa, Cees; Hessels, Jason W. T.; Janssen, Gemma H.; Bogdanov, Slavko; Lyne, Andrew G.; Stappers, Benjamin; Patruno, Alessandro; Stern, Daniel; Tomsick, John A.; Boggs, Steven E.; Craig, William W.; Chakrabarty, Deepto; Christensen, Finn E.; and others

    2014-08-20

    We report NuSTAR observations of the millisecond pulsar-low-mass X-ray binary (LMXB) transition system PSR J1023+0038 from 2013 June and October, before and after the formation of an accretion disk around the neutron star. Between June 10 and 12, a few days to two weeks before the radio disappearance of the pulsar, the 3-79 keV X-ray spectrum was well fit by a simple power law with a photon index of Γ=1.17{sub −0.07}{sup +0.08} (at 90% confidence) with a 3-79 keV luminosity of 7.4 ± 0.4 × 10{sup 32} erg s{sup –1}. Significant orbital modulation was observed with a modulation fraction of 36% ± 10%. During the October 19-21 observation, the spectrum is described by a softer power law (Γ=1.66{sub −0.05}{sup +0.06}) with an average luminosity of 5.8 ± 0.2 × 10{sup 33} erg s{sup –1} and a peak luminosity of ≈1.2 × 10{sup 34} erg s{sup –1} observed during a flare. No significant orbital modulation was detected. The spectral observations are consistent with previous and current multiwavelength observations and show the hard X-ray power law extending to 79 keV without a spectral break. Sharp-edged, flat-bottomed dips are observed with widths between 30 and 1000 s and ingress and egress timescales of 30-60 s. No change in hardness ratio was observed during the dips. Consecutive dip separations are log-normal in distribution with a typical separation of approximately 400 s. These dips are distinct from dipping activity observed in LMXBs. We compare and contrast these dips to observations of dips and state changes in the similar transition systems PSR J1824–2452I and XSS J1227.0–4859 and discuss possible interpretations based on the transitions in the inner disk.

  6. Multi-wavelength Observations of 3FGL J2039.6-5618: A Candidate Redback Millisecond Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salvetti, D.; Mignani, R. P.; De Luca, A.; Delvaux, C.; Pallanca, C.; Belfiore, A.; Marelli, M.; Breeveld, A. A.; Greiner, J.; Becker, W.; Pizzocaro, D.

    2015-12-01

    We present multi-wavelength observations of the unassociated γ-ray source 3FGL J2039.6-5618 detected by the Fermi Large Area Telescope. The source γ-ray properties suggest that it is a pulsar, most likely a millisecond pulsar, for which neither radio nor γ-ray pulsations have been detected. We observed 3FGL J2039.6-5618 with XMM-Newton and discovered several candidate X-ray counterparts within/close to the γ-ray error box. The brightest of these X-ray sources is variable with a period of 0.2245 ± 0.0081 days. Its X-ray spectrum can be described by a power law with photon index ΓX = 1.36 ± 0.09, and hydrogen column density NH < 4 × 1020 cm-2, which gives an unabsorbed 0.3-10 keV X-ray flux of 1.02 × 10-13 erg cm-2 s-1. Observations with the Gamma-Ray Burst Optical/Near-Infrared Detector discovered an optical counterpart to this X-ray source, with a time-averaged magnitude g‧ ˜ 19.5. The counterpart features a flux modulation with a period of 0.22748 ± 0.00043 days that coincides, within the errors, with that of the X-ray source, confirming the association based on the positional coincidence. We interpret the observed X-ray/optical periodicity as the orbital period of a close binary system where one of the two members is a neutron star. The light curve profile of the companion star, which has two asymmetric peaks, suggests that the optical emission comes from two regions with different temperatures on its tidally distorted surface. Based upon its X-ray and optical properties, we consider this source as the most likely X-ray counterpart to 3FGL J2039.6-5618, which we propose to be a new redback system.

  7. A NuSTAR Observation of the Gamma-ray-emitting X-ray Binary and Transitional Millisecond Pulsar Candidate 1RXS J154439.4–112820

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanov, Slavko

    2016-07-01

    I present a 40 ks Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array observation of the recently identified low-luminosity X-ray binary and transitional millisecond pulsar (tMSP) candidate 1RXS J154439.4‑112820, which is associated with the high-energy γ-ray source 3FGL J1544.6‑1125. The system is detected up to ˜30 keV with an extension of the same power-law spectrum and rapid large-amplitude variability between two flux levels observed in soft X-rays. These findings provide further evidence that 1RXS J154439.4‑112820 belongs to the same class of objects as the nearby bona fide tMSPs PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270‑4859 and therefore almost certainly hosts a millisecond pulsar accreting at low luminosity. I also examine the long-term accretion history of 1RXS J154439.4‑112820 based on archival optical, ultraviolet, X-ray, and γ-ray light curves covering approximately the past decade. Throughout this period, the source has maintained similar flux levels at all wavelengths, which is an indication that it has not experienced prolonged episodes of a non-accreting radio pulsar state but may spontaneously undergo such events in the future.

  8. A NuSTAR Observation of the Gamma-ray-emitting X-ray Binary and Transitional Millisecond Pulsar Candidate 1RXS J154439.4–112820

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanov, Slavko

    2016-07-01

    I present a 40 ks Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array observation of the recently identified low-luminosity X-ray binary and transitional millisecond pulsar (tMSP) candidate 1RXS J154439.4‑112820, which is associated with the high-energy γ-ray source 3FGL J1544.6‑1125. The system is detected up to ∼30 keV with an extension of the same power-law spectrum and rapid large-amplitude variability between two flux levels observed in soft X-rays. These findings provide further evidence that 1RXS J154439.4‑112820 belongs to the same class of objects as the nearby bona fide tMSPs PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270‑4859 and therefore almost certainly hosts a millisecond pulsar accreting at low luminosity. I also examine the long-term accretion history of 1RXS J154439.4‑112820 based on archival optical, ultraviolet, X-ray, and γ-ray light curves covering approximately the past decade. Throughout this period, the source has maintained similar flux levels at all wavelengths, which is an indication that it has not experienced prolonged episodes of a non-accreting radio pulsar state but may spontaneously undergo such events in the future.

  9. 1 Hz Flaring in the Accreting Millisecond Pulsar NGC 6440 X-2: Disk Trapping and Accretion Cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patruno, Alessandro; D'Angelo, Caroline

    2013-07-01

    The dynamics of the plasma in the inner regions of an accretion disk around accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars (AMXPs) is controlled by the magnetic field of the neutron star. The interaction between an accretion disk and a strong magnetic field is not well understood, particularly at low accretion rates (the so-called propeller regime). This is due in part to the lack of clear observational diagnostics to constrain the physics of the disk-field interaction. Here, we associate the strong ~1 Hz modulation seen in the AMXP NGC 6440 X-2 with an instability that arises when the inner edge of the accretion disk is close to the corotation radius (where the stellar rotation rate matches the Keplerian speed in the disk). A similar modulation has previously been observed in another AMXP (SAX J1808.4-3658) and we suggest that the two phenomena are related and that this may be a common phenomenon among other magnetized systems. Detailed comparisons with theoretical models suggest that when the instability is observed, the interaction region between the disk and the field is very narrow—of the order of 1 km. Modeling further suggests that there is a transition region (~1-10 km) around the corotation radius where the disk-field torque changes sign from spin-up to spin-down. This is the first time that a direct observational constraint has been placed on the width of the disk-magnetosphere interaction region, in the frame of the trapped-disk instability model.

  10. Analysis of variability in the burst oscillations of the accreting millisecond pulsar XTE J1814-338

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Watts, Anna L.; Strohmayer, Tod E.; Markwardt, Craig B.

    2005-01-01

    The accreting millisecond pulsar XTE J1814-338 exhibits oscillations at the known spin frequency during Type I X-ray bursts. The properties of the burst oscillations reflect the nature of the thermal asymmetry on the stellar surface. We present an analysis of the variability of the burst oscillations of this source, focusing on three characteristics: fractional amplitude, harmonic content and frequency. Fractional amplitude and harmonic content constrain the size, shape and position of the emitting region, whilst variations in frequency indicate motion of the emitting region on the neutron star surface. We examine both long-term variability over the course of the outburst, and short-term variability during the bursts. For most of the bursts, fractional amplitude is consistent with that of the accretion pulsations, implying a low degree of fuel spread. There is however a population of bursts whose fractional amplitudes are substantially lower, implying a higher degree of fuel spread, possibly forced by the explosive burning front of a precursor burst. For the first harmonic, substantial differences between the burst and accretion pulsations suggest that hotspot geometry is not the only mechanism giving rise to harmonic content in the latter. Fractional amplitude variability during the bursts is low; we can only rule out the hypothesis that the fractional amplitude remains constant at the l(sigma) level for bursts that do not exhibit photospheric radius expansion (PRE). There are no significant variations in frequency in any of the bursts except for the one burst that exhibits PRE. This burst exhibits a highly significant but small (= 0.1Hz) drop in frequency in the burst rise. The timescale of the frequency shift is slower than simple burning layer expansion models predict, suggesting that other mechanisms may be at work.