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Sample records for millisecond pulsar xte

  1. System mass constraints for the accreting millisecond pulsar XTE J1814-338 using Bowen fluorescence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, L.; Steeghs, D.; Casares, J.; Charles, P. A.; Muñoz-Darias, T.; Marsh, T. R.; Hynes, R. I.; O'Brien, K.

    2017-04-01

    We present phase-resolved spectroscopy of the millisecond X-ray pulsar XTE J1814-338 obtained during its 2003 outburst. The spectra are dominated by high-excitation emission lines of He II λ4686, Hβ, and the Bowen blend C III/N III 4630-50 Å. We exploit the proven Bowen fluorescence technique to establish a complete set of dynamical system parameter constraints using bootstrap Doppler tomography, a first for an accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar binary. The reconstructed Doppler map of the N III λ4640 Bowen transition exhibits a statistically significant (>4σ) spot feature at the expected position of the companion star. If this feature is driven by irradiation of the surface of the Roche lobe filling companion, we derive a strict lower limit to the true radial velocity semi-amplitude K2. Combining our donor constraint with the well-constrained orbit of the neutron star leads to a determination of the binary mass ratio: q = 0.123^{+0.012}_{-0.010}. The component masses are not tightly constrained given our lack of knowledge of the binary inclination. We cannot rule out a canonical neutron star mass of 1.4 M⊙ (1.1 M⊙ < M1 < 3.1 M⊙; 95 per cent). The 68/95 per cent confidence limits of M2 are consistent with the companion being a significantly bloated, M-type main-sequence star. Our findings, combined with results from studies of the quiescent optical counterpart of XTE J1814-338, suggest the presence of a rotation-powered millisecond pulsar in XTE J1814-338 during an X-ray quiescent state. The companion mass is typical of the so-called redback pulsar binary systems (M2 ∼ 0.2 M⊙).

  2. Discovery of a Second Millisecond Accreting Pulsar: XTE J1751-305

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markwardt, C. B.; Swank, J. H.; Strohmayer, T. E.; in 't Zand, J. J. M.; Marshall, F. E.

    2002-08-01

    We report the discovery by the Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer Proportional Counter Array of a second transient accreting millisecond pulsar, XTE J1751-305, during regular monitoring observations of the Galactic bulge region. The pulsar has a spin frequency of 435 Hz, making it one of the fastest pulsars. The pulsations contain the signature of orbital Doppler modulation, which implies an orbital period of 42 minutes, the shortest orbital period of any known radio or X-ray millisecond pulsar. The mass function, fX=(1.278+/-0.003)×10-6 Msolar, yields a minimum mass for the companion of between 0.013 and 0.017 Msolar, depending on the mass of the neutron star. No eclipses were detected. A previous X-ray outburst in 1998 June was discovered in archival All-Sky Monitor data. Assuming mass transfer in this binary system is driven by gravitational radiation, we constrain the orbital inclination to be in the range 30°-85° and the companion mass to be 0.013-0.035 Msolar. The companion is most likely a heated helium dwarf. We also present results from the Chandra High Resolution Camera-S observations, which provide the best-known position of XTE J1751-305.

  3. 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.

  4. Binary and Millisecond Pulsars.

    PubMed

    Lorimer, Duncan R

    2008-01-01

    We review the main properties, demographics and applications of binary and millisecond radio pulsars. Our knowledge of these exciting objects has greatly increased in recent years, mainly due to successful surveys which have brought the known pulsar population to over 1800. There are now 83 binary and millisecond pulsars associated with the disk of our Galaxy, and a further 140 pulsars in 26 of the Galactic globular clusters. Recent highlights include the discovery of the young relativistic binary system PSR J1906+0746, a rejuvination in globular cluster pulsar research including growing numbers of pulsars with masses in excess of 1.5 M⊙, a precise measurement of relativistic spin precession in the double pulsar system and a Galactic millisecond pulsar in an eccentric (e = 0.44) orbit around an unevolved companion.

  5. Binary and Millisecond Pulsars.

    PubMed

    Lorimer, Duncan R

    2005-01-01

    We review the main properties, demographics and applications of binary and millisecond radio pulsars. Our knowledge of these exciting objects has greatly increased in recent years, mainly due to successful surveys which have brought the known pulsar population to over 1700. There are now 80 binary and millisecond pulsars associated with the disk of our Galaxy, and a further 103 pulsars in 24 of the Galactic globular clusters. Recent highlights have been the discovery of the first ever double pulsar system and a recent flurry of discoveries in globular clusters, in particular Terzan 5.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. Millisecond radio pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    1989-04-01

    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.

  9. Millisecond radio pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    1989-11-01

    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. Millisecond radio pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Verbunt, Frank; Lewin, Walter H. G.; Vanparadijs, 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Discovery of a Second Millesecond Accreting Pulsar: XTE J1751-305

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Markwardt, C. B.; Swank, J. H.; Strohmayer, T. E.; intZand, J. J. M.; Marshall, F. E.; White, Nicholas E. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    We report the discovery by the RXTE PCA of a second transient accreting millisecond pulsar, XTE J1751-305, during regular monitoring observations of the galactic bulge region. The pulsar has a spin frequency of 435 Hz, making it one of the fastest pulsars. The pulsations contain the signature of orbital Doppler modulation, which implies an orbital period of 42 minutes, the shortest orbital period of any known radio or X-ray millisecond pulsar. The mass function, f(sub x) = (1.278 +/- 0.003) x 10 (exp -6) solar mass, yields a minimum mass for the companion of between 0.013 and 0.0017 solar mass depending on the mass of the neutron star. No eclipses were detected. A previous X-ray outburst in June, 1998, was discovered in archival All-Sky Monitor data. Assuming mass transfer in this binary system is driven by gravitational radiation, we constrain the orbital inclination to be in the range 30 deg-85 deg and the companion mass to be 0.013-0.035 solar mass. The companion is most likely a heated helium dwarf. We also present results from the Chandra HRC-S observations which provide the best known position of XTE J1751-305.

  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

    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).

  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

    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.

  17. 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).

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. Partial accretion regime of accreting millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eksi, Kazim

    2016-07-01

    The inner parts of the disks around neutron stars in low mass X-ray binaries may become geometrically thick due to inhibition of accretion at the disk mid-plane when the central object is rotating rapidly. In such a case matter inflowing through the disk may keep accreting onto the poles of the neutron star from the parts of the disk away from the disk mid-plane while the matter is propelled at the disk mid-plane. An important ingredient of the evolution of millisecond pulsars is then the fraction of the inflowing matter that can accrete onto the poles in the fast rotation regime depending on the fastness parameter. This ``soft'' propeller regime may be associated with the rapid decay stage observed in the light curves of several accreting millisecond pulsars. To date only a few studies considered the partial accretion regime. By using geometrical arguments we improve the existing studies and test the model by reproducing the lightcurves of millisecond X-ray pulsars via time dependent simulations of disk evolution. We also present analytical solutions that represent disks with partial accretion.

  1. 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).

  2. 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).

  3. 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).

  4. 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).

  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

    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).

  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

    2013-04-01

    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).

  7. Sustained magnetic fields in binary millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chanmugam, G.; Brecher, K.

    1987-10-01

    It is proposed here that the magnetic fields of neutron stars do not decay either in binary millisecond pulsars (BMPs) or in general. This eliminates the severe discrepancy between the hypothesis that neutron stars in BMPs formed from the accretion-induced collapse of white dwarfs with shorter orbital periods and the observation that the fraction of pulsars which are BMPs is too large by a factor of over 100. It is also shown that, if such neutron stars are formed from the accretion-induced magnetic flux and an angular momentum-conserving collapse of white dwarfs, most of them are likely to have been born, and remain, spinning rapidly and to have weak magnetic fields, in agreement with observations of BMPs and low-mass X-ray binaries.

  8. 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.

  9. Binary and Millisecond Pulsars at the New Millennium.

    PubMed

    Lorimer, Duncan R

    2001-01-01

    We review the properties and applications of binary and millisecond pulsars. Our knowledge of these exciting objects has greatly increased in recent years, mainly due to successful surveys which have brought the known pulsar population to over 1300. There are now 56 binary and millisecond pulsars in the Galactic disk and a further 47 in globular clusters. This review is concerned primarily with the results and spin-offs from these surveys which are of particular interest to the relativity community.

  10. Multiwavelength analysis of four millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2011-08-01

    Radio timing observations of millisecond pulsars (MSPs) in support of Fermi LAT observations of the gamma-ray sky enhance the sensitivity of high-energy pulsation searches. With contemporaneous ephemerides we have detected gamma-ray pulsations from PSR B1937+21, the first MSP ever discovered, and B1957+20, the first known black-widow system. The two MSPs share a number of properties: they are energetic and distant compared to other gamma-ray MSPs, and both of them exhibit aligned radio and gamma-ray emission peaks, indicating co-located emission regions in the outer magnetosphere of the pulsars. However, radio observations are also crucial for revealing MSPs in Fermi unassociated sources. In a search for radio pulsations at the position of such unassociated sources, the Nançay Radio Telescope discovered two MSPs, PSRs J2017+0603 and J2302+4442, increasing the sample of known Galactic disk MSPs. Subsequent radio timing observations led to the detection of gamma-ray pulsations from these two MSPs as well. We describe multiwavelength timing and spectral analysis of these four pulsars, and the modeling of their gamma-ray light curves in the context of theoretical models.

  11. Genesis stories for the millisecond pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruderman, M. A.; Shaham, J.

    1983-09-01

    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.

  12. ELECTROMAGNETIC SPINDOWN OF A TRANSIENT ACCRETING MILLISECOND PULSAR DURING QUIESCENCE

    SciTech Connect

    Melatos, A.; Mastrano, A. E-mail: alpham@unimelb.edu.au

    2016-02-10

    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.

  13. 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.

  14. The optical counterparts of accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars during quiescence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Avanzo, P.; Campana, S.; Casares, J.; Covino, S.; Israel, G. L.; Stella, L.

    2009-12-01

    Context: Eight accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars (AMXPs) are known to date. Although these systems are well studied at high energies, very little information is available for their optical/NIR counterparts. Up to now, only two of them, SAX J1808.4-3658 and IGR J00291+5934, have a secure multi-band detection of their optical counterparts in quiescence. Aims: All these systems are transient low-mass X-ray binaries. Optical and NIR observations carried out during quiescence give a unique opportunity to constrain the nature of the donor star and to investigate the origin of the observed quiescent luminosity at long wavelengths. In addition, optical observations can be fundamental as they ultimately allow us to estimate the compact object mass through mass function measurements. Methods: Using data obtained with the ESO-Very Large Telescope, we performed a deep optical and NIR photometric study of the fields of XTE J1814-338 and of the ultracompact systems XTE J0929-314 and XTE J1807-294 during quiescence in order to look for the presence of a variable counterpart. If suitable candidates were found, we also carried out optical spectroscopy. Results: We present here the first multi-band (VR) detection of the optical counterpart of XTE J1814-338 in quiescence together with its optical spectrum. The optical light curve shows variability in both bands consistent with a sinusoidal modulation at the known 4.3 h orbital period and presents a puzzling decrease of the V-band flux around superior conjunction that may be interpreted as a partial eclipse. The marginal detection of the very faint counterpart of XTE J0929-314 and deep upper limits for the optical/NIR counterpart of XTE J1807-294 are also reported. We also briefly discuss the results reported in the literature for the optical/NIR counterpart of XTE J1751-305. Conclusions: Our findings are consistent with AMXPs being systems containing an old, weakly magnetized neutron star, reactivated as a millisecond radio pulsar

  15. X-ray studies of three binary millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Webb, N. A.; Olive, J.-F.; Barret, D.

    2005-10-01

    It is thought that millisecond pulsars with white dwarf companions are born from X-ray binaries. The majority of known systems have been studied uniquely in the radio domain, which limits our understanding of such systems. We present here the X-ray observations of the millisecond pulsar PSR J0218+4232 and the two faint millisecond pulsars PSR J0751+1807 and PSR J1012+5307, which we discuss in conjunction with radio observations. We confirm the previously detected X-ray pulsations of PSR J0218+4232 and we show that its folded lightcurve is strongly dependent on energy. We present evidence to suggest that the broad band X-ray spectrum for this pulsar may not be a simple power law, but that there is some evidence for an excess of soft thermal emission over the power law spectrum, in particular from the strongest pulse, in support of a heated polar cap model for this pulsar. We also present the X-ray spectra of the two faint millisecond pulsars as well as some evidence to suggest that both of these millisecond pulsars show pulsations in the X-ray band. We then discuss the implied nature of the magnetic field configuration as a means of discriminating between competing magnetic field evolution theories in millisecond pulsars.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. COSMIC-RAY POSITRONS FROM MILLISECOND PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

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

    2015-07-10

    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.

  19. 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

  20. Origin and radio pulse properties of millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Kaiyou; Ruderman, Malvin

    1993-05-01

    Millisecond pulsars may be formed by the accretion induced collapse of massive white dwarfs or from neutron stars spun-up by accretion from low-mass companions. Because the solid crust of a neutron star is expected to be moved by strong stresses which build up during spin-up or spin-down, the expected surface magnetic field structures are quite different for millisecond pulsars formed in these two different scenarios. During prolonged spin-up the moving crust compresses all stellar surface magnetic field into a small region around the spin axis. This can account for observed properties of disk population millisecond pulsars and their radio pulses, especially those of the most rapidly spinning ones such as PSR 1937 + 21 (two pulse components of comparable intensity 180 deg apart; extremely narrow component widths; fan beam emission so that almost all such millisecond pulsars are observable despite the narrow widths; nearly 100 percent linear polarization and fixed polarization angle at radio frequencies below one GHz for one of the two pulse components). Radio pulse properties of typical millisecond pulsars in globular clusters appear to be different from those of the disk population, and may indicate a different genesis, e.g., accretion induced collapse, for most of these pulsars.

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

    PubMed

    Tauris, Thomas M

    2012-02-03

    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.

  2. Spin-Down of Radio Millisecond Pulsars at Genesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  3. 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

    2012-12-07

    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.

  4. Neutron Star Seismology with Accreting Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strohmayer, Tod

    Neutron stars provide natural laboratories for the study of a number of important topics in fundamental physics, including the composition and equation of state (EOS) of cold matter at the highest densities achievable in nature. The physical conditions in their deep interiors cannot be replicated in terrestrial laboratories, and the nature of matter under such extreme conditions remains one of the major unsolved problems in physics. Direct measurement of the mass - radius relationship for neutron stars is very important for constraining the EOS of dense matter, however, since different phases of dense matter can have similar equations of state, mass and radius measurements alone are not very efficient in determining their interior composition. Additional, complementary observables are needed to more definitively probe the composition of neutron star cores. Asteroseismology, the measurement of the characteristic frequencies of the normal modes of oscillation of stars, can provide a powerful probe of their interiors. For example, helioseismology has provided unprecedented insights about the deep interior of the Sun. Comparable capabilities for neutron star seismology have not yet been achieved, but our recent work indicates that sensitive searches for the signatures of neutron star oscillations can be carried out using the high time resolution, pulse timing data obtained by the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE)-and in the case of a single source the XMM-Newton pn camera-from the population of accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars (AMXPs, Strohmayer & Mahmoodifar 2014a), and in some thermonuclear burst sources (Strohmayer & Mahmoodifar 2014b). It is the primary aim of this proposal to carry out the first such comprehensive search for global oscillation modes across this entire source class of neutron stars using approximately 6 M-sec of RXTE and 100 k-sec of XMMNewton archival data, and thereby significantly advance the nascent field of neutron star seismology. We will

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

    2008-06-06

    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.

  8. 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.

  9. Timing of binary and millisecond PKSMB/PH pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eatough, Ralph; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Kramer, Michael; Lyne, Andrew; Hobbs, George; Burgay, Marta; Camilo, Fernando; Stairs, Ingrid; Keith, Michael; Lorimer, Duncan Ross; Jaroenjittichai, Phrudth

    2010-04-01

    This proposal concentrates the timing observations of binary and millisecond pulsars discovered by us in the Parkes Multibeam (PKSMB) and high-latitude (PH) surveys. In order to fully exploit the scientific promises of our discoveries it is essential to perform continued timing observations. It is crucial that the observing sessions be spaced at three-to-five week intervals. The pulsars will be visible during LST 10:00-19:00 and the project should be scheduled within this interval.

  10. Timing of binary and millisecond PKSMB/PH pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eatough, Ralph; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Kramer, Michael; Lyne, Andrew; Hobbs, George; Burgay, Marta; Camilo, Fernando; Stairs, Ingrid; Keith, Michael; Lorimer, Duncan Ross; Jaroenjittichai, Phrudth

    2009-10-01

    This proposal concentrates the timing observations of binary and millisecond pulsars discovered by us in the Parkes Multibeam (PKSMB) and high-latitude (PH) surveys. In order to fully exploit the scientific promises of our discoveries it is essential to perform continued timing observations. It is crucial that the observing sessions be spaced at three-to-five week intervals. The pulsars will be visible during LST 10:00-19:00 and the project should be scheduled within this interval.

  11. Timing of binary and millisecond PKSMB/PH pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eatough, Ralph; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Verbiest, Joris P. W.; Kramer, Michael; Lyne, Andrew; Hobbs, George; Burgay, Marta; Camilo, Fernando; Stairs, Ingrid; Keith, Michael; Lorimer, Duncan Ross

    2010-10-01

    This proposal concentrates the timing observations of binary and millisecond pulsars discovered by us in the Parkes Multibeam (PKSMB) and high-latitude (PH) surveys. In order to fully exploit the scientific promises of our discoveries it is essential to perform continued timing observations. It is crucial that the observing sessions be spaced at three-to-five week intervals. The pulsars will be visible during LST 10:00-19:00 and the project should be scheduled within this interval.

  12. Timing of binary and millisecond PKSMB/PH pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kramer, Michael; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Lyne, Andrew; Hobbs, George; McLaughlin, Maura; Burgay, Marta; D'Amico, Nichi; Camilo, Fernando; Stairs, Ingrid; Faulkner, Andrew; Lorimer, Duncan Ross

    2007-04-01

    This proposal concentrates the timing observations of binary and millisecond pulsars discovered by us in the Parkes Multibeam (PKSMB) and high-latitude (PH) surveys. In order to fully exploit the scientific promises of our discoveries it is essential to perform continued timing observations. It is crucial that the observing sessions be spaced at three-to-five week intervals. The pulsars will be visible during LST 10:00-19:00 and the project should be scheduled within this interval.

  13. Timing of binary and millisecond PKSMB/PH pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kramer, Michael; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Lyne, Andrew; Hobbs, George; McLaughlin, Maura; Burgay, Marta; D'Amico, Nichi; Stairs, Ingrid; Faulkner, Andrew; Eatough, Ralph; Lorimer, Duncan Ross

    2008-04-01

    This proposal concentrates the timing observations of binary and millisecond pulsars discovered by us in the Parkes Multibeam (PKSMB) and high-latitude (PH) surveys. In order to fully exploit the scientific promises of our discoveries it is essential to perform continued timing observations. It is crucial that the observing sessions be spaced at three-to-five week intervals. The pulsars will be visible during LST 10:00-19:00 and the project should be scheduled within this interval.

  14. Timing of binary and millisecond PKSMB/PH pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kramer, Michael; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Lyne, Andrew; Hobbs, George; McLaughlin, Maura; Burgay, Marta; D'Amico, Nichi; Stairs, Ingrid; Faulkner, Andrew; Eatough, Ralph; Lorimer, Duncan Ross

    2007-10-01

    This proposal concentrates the timing observations of binary and millisecond pulsars discovered by us in the Parkes Multibeam (PKSMB) and high-latitude (PH) surveys. In order to fully exploit the scientific promises of our discoveries it is essential to perform continued timing observations. It is crucial that the observing sessions be spaced at three-to-five week intervals. The pulsars will be visible during LST 10:00-19:00 and the project should be scheduled within this interval.

  15. Timing of binary and millisecond PKSMB/PH pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kramer, Michael; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Lyne, Andrew; Hobbs, George; McLaughlin, Maura; Burgay, Marta; D'Amico, Nichi; Camilo, Fernando; Stairs, Ingrid; Faulkner, Andrew; Lorimer, Duncan Ross

    2006-10-01

    This proposal concentrates the timing observations of binary and millisecond pulsars discovered by us in the Parkes Multibeam (PKSMB) and high-latitude (PH) surveys. In order to fully exploit the scientific promises of our discoveries it is essential to perform continued timing observations. It is crucial that the observing sessions be spaced at three-to-five week intervals. The pulsars will be visible during LST 10:00-19:00 and the project should be scheduled within this interval.

  16. Timing of binary and millisecond PKSMB/PH pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eatough, Ralph; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Kramer, Michael; Lyne, Andrew; Hobbs, George; McLaughlin, Maura; Burgay, Marta; D'Amico, Nichi; Stairs, Ingrid; Faulkner, Andrew; Lorimer, Duncan Ross

    2009-04-01

    This proposal concentrates the timing observations of binary and millisecond pulsars discovered by us in the Parkes Multibeam (PKSMB) and high-latitude (PH) surveys. In order to fully exploit the scientific promises of our discoveries it is essential to perform continued timing observations. It is crucial that the observing sessions be spaced at three-to-five week intervals. The pulsars will be visible during LST 10:00-19:00 and the project should be scheduled within this interval.

  17. 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).

  18. Timing of binary and millisecond PKSMB/PH pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kramer, Michael; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Lyne, Andrew; Hobbs, George; McLaughlin, Maura; Burgay, Marta; D'Amico, Nichi; Stairs, Ingrid; Faulkner, Andrew; Eatough, Ralph; Lorimer, Duncan Ross

    2008-10-01

    This proposal concentrates the timing observations of binary and millisecond pulsars discovered by us in the Parkes Multibeam (PKSMB) and high-latitude (PH) surveys. This session we have also incorporated P417, timing of a new class of pulsars, into this proposal. In order to fully exploit the scientific promises of our discoveries it is essential to perform continued timing observations. It is crucial that the observing sessions be spaced at three-to-five week intervals. The pulsars will be visible during LST 05:00-19:00 and the project should be scheduled within this interval.

  19. Application of Millisecond Pulsar Timing to the Long-Term Stability of Clock Ensembles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Foster, Roger S.; Matsakis, Demetrios N.

    1996-01-01

    We review the application of millisecond pulsars to define a precise long-term standard and positional reference system in a nearly inertial reference frame. We quantify the current timing precision of the best millisecond pulsars and define the required precise time and time interval (PTTI) accuracy and stability to enable time transfer via pulsars. Pulsars may prove useful as independent standards to examine decade-long timing stability and provide an independent natural system within which to calibrate any new, perhaps vastly improved atomic time scale. Since pulsar stability appears to be related to the lifetime of the pulsar, the new millisecond pulsar J173+0747 is projected to have a 100-day accuracy equivalent to a single HP5071 cesium standard. Over the last five years, dozens of new millisecond pulsars have been discovered. A few of the new millisecond pulsars may have even better timing properties.

  20. 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.

  1. 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}).

  2. 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.

  3. ON DETECTING MILLISECOND PULSARS AT THE GALACTIC CENTER

    SciTech Connect

    Macquart, Jean-Pierre

    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.

  4. Timing of binary and millisecond PKSMB/PH pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kramer, Michael; Possenti, Andrea; Manchester, Dick; Lyne, Andrew; Hobbs, George; McLaughlin, Maura; Burgay, Marta; D'Amico, Nichi; Camilo, Fernando; Stairs, Ingrid; Faulkner, Andrew; Lorimer, Duncan Ross

    2006-04-01

    This proposal consolidates and concentrates the timing observations of binary and millisecond pulsars discovered by us in the Parkes Multibeam (PKSMB) and high-latitude (PH) surveys. In order to fully exploit the scientific promises of our discoveries it is essential to perform continued timing observations. It is crucial that the observing sessions be spaced at three-to-five week intervals. The pulsars will be visible during LST 08:30 -- 22:30 and the project should be scheduled within this interval.

  5. Modelling X-ray Pulse Profiles of Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leahy, D. A.; Morsink, S.; Tian, W.

    2013-03-01

    The modelling of X-ray pulse profiles from accreting millisecond pulsars is a way to infer masses and radii of neutron stars. We briefly describe how a pulse shape encodes information on the mass and radius, but also depends on other parameters such as hot spot location and observer viewing angle. A numerical model that we have developed is then described. The model includes light bending, time-delay effects, and Doppler effects for photons. The model accounts for oblateness of the neutron star, caused by the rapid rotation, and for scattered light from the surface of the accretion disk. The millisecond pulsar SAX J1808-3658 has multiple observations taken during different outbursts. The observed pulse shapes vary greatly, and it is a challenging test to fit the different observations. Some of the latest results are given.

  6. An x-ray nebula associated with the millisecond pulsar B1957+20.

    PubMed

    Stappers, B W; Gaensler, B M; Kaspi, V M; van der Klis, M; Lewin, W H G

    2003-02-28

    We have detected an x-ray nebula around the binary millisecond pulsar B1957+20. A narrow tail, corresponding to the shocked pulsar wind, is seen interior to the known Halpha bow shock and proves the long-held assumption that the rotational energy of millisecond pulsars is dissipated through relativistic winds. Unresolved x-ray emission likely represents the shock where the winds of the pulsar and its companion collide. This emission indicates that the efficiency with which relativistic particles are accelerated in the postshock flow is similar to that for young pulsars, despite the shock proximity and much weaker surface magnetic field of this millisecond pulsar.

  7. XMM-Newton Observations of Four Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zavlin, Vyacheslav E.

    2005-01-01

    I present an analysis of the XMM-Newton observations of four millisecond pulsars, J0437-4715, J2124-3358, J1024-0719, and J0034-0534. The new data provide strong evidence of thermal emission in the X-ray flux detected from the first three objects. This thermal component is best interpreted as radiation from pulsar polar caps covered with a nonmagnetic hydrogen atmosphere. A nonthermal power-law component, dominating at energies E greater than or equal to 3 keV, can also be present in the detected X-ray emission. For PSR J0437-4715, the timing analysis reveals that the shape and pulsed fraction of the pulsar light curves are energy dependent. This, together with the results obtained from the phase-resolved spectroscopy, supports the two-component (thermal plus nonthermal) interpretation of the pulsar's X-ray radiation. Highly significant pulsations have been found in the X-ray flux of PSRs 52124-3358 and 51024-0719. For PSR 50034-0534, a possible X-ray counterpart of the radio pulsar has been suggested. The inferred properties of the detected thermal emission are compared with predictions of radio pulsar models.

  8. Exploring the Physical Conditions in Millisecond Pulsar Emission Regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rankin, Joanna M.

    2017-01-01

    The five-component profile of the 2.7-ms pulsar J0337+1715 appears to exhibit the best example to date of a core/double-cone emission-beam structure in a millisecond pulsar (MSP). Moreover, three other MSPs, the Binary Pulsar B1913+16, B1953+29 and J1022+1001, seem to exhibit core/single-cone profiles. These configurations are remarkable and important because it has not been clear whether MSPs and slow pulsars exhibit similar emission-beam configurations despite having radically different magnetospheric sizes and magnetic field strengths. MSPs thus provide an extreme context for studying pulsar radio emission. Particle currents along the magnetic polar fluxtube connect processes just above the polar cap through the radio-emission region to the light-cylinder and the external environment. In slow pulsars radio-emission heights are typically about 500 km where the magnetic field is nearly dipolar, and estimates of the physical conditions there point to radiation below the plasma frequency and emission from charged solitons by the curvature process. We are able to estimate emission heights for the four MSPs and carry out a similar estimation of physical conditions in their much lower emission regions. We find strong evidence that MSPs also radiate by curvature emission from charged solitons.

  9. An Active, Asynchronous Companion to a Redback Millisecond Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Staden, André D.; Antoniadis, John

    2016-12-01

    PSR J1723-2837 is a “redback” millisecond pulsar (MSP) with a low-mass companion in a 14.8 hr orbit. The system’s properties closely resemble those of “transitional” MSPs that alternate between spin-down and accretion-powered states. In this Letter, we report on long-term photometry of the 15.5 mag companion to the pulsar. We use our data to illustrate that the star experiences sporadic activity, which we attribute to starspots. We also find that the companion is not tidally locked and infer {P}{{s}}/{P}{{b}}=0.9974(7) for the ratio between the rotational and orbital periods. Finally, we place constraints on various parameters, including the irradiation efficiency and pulsar mass. We discuss similarities with other redback MSPs and conclude that starspots may provide the most likely explanation for the often seen irregular and asymmetric optical light curves.

  10. Mid- and Far-Infrared Infrared Space Observatory Limits on Dust Disks Around Millisecond Pulsars

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2004-05-12

    pulsars: general 1. INTRODUCTION The first extrasolar planets discovered were found around the millisecond pulsar PSR B1257+12 (Wolszczan & Frail...Observatory. The pulsar PSR B1257+12 is orbited by three planets , and other millisecond pulsars may be orbited by dust disks that represent planets ...disk would be coupled only weakly to the pulsar’s emission. If the planets around PSR B1257+12 are composed largely of metals, our limits are probably

  11. THREE MILLISECOND PULSARS IN FERMI LAT UNASSOCIATED BRIGHT SOURCES

    SciTech Connect

    Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Wolff, M. T.; Grove, J. E.; Camilo, F.; Roberts, M. S. E.; Celik, Oe.; DeCesar, M. E.; Ferrara, E. C.; Gehrels, N.; Cheung, C. C.; Abdo, A. A.; Kerr, M.; Pennucci, T.; Cognard, I.; Freire, P. C. C.; Desvignes, G.; Donato, D. E-mail: Paul.Ray@nrl.navy.mil

    2011-01-20

    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 pulsars (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 GeV, 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{sup 30}-10{sup 31} erg s{sup -1} are typical of the rare radio MSPs seen in X-rays.

  12. 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.

  13. A study of multifrequency polarization pulse profiles of millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dai, S.; Hobbs, G.; Manchester, R. N.; Kerr, M.; Shannon, R. M.; van Straten, W.; Mata, A.; Bailes, M.; Bhat, N. D. R.; Burke-Spolaor, S.; Coles, W. A.; Johnston, S.; Keith, M. J.; Levin, Y.; Osłowski, S.; Reardon, D.; Ravi, V.; Sarkissian, J. M.; Tiburzi, C.; Toomey, L.; Wang, H. G.; Wang, J.-B.; Wen, L.; Xu, R. X.; Yan, W. M.; Zhu, X.-J.

    2015-05-01

    We present high signal-to-noise ratio, multifrequency polarization pulse profiles for 24 millisecond pulsars that are being observed as part of the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array project. The pulsars are observed in three bands, centred close to 730, 1400 and 3100 MHz, using a dual-band 10 cm/50 cm receiver and the central beam of the 20-cm multibeam receiver. Observations spanning approximately six years have been carefully calibrated and summed to produce high S/N profiles. This allows us to study the individual profile components and in particular how they evolve with frequency. We also identify previously undetected profile features. For many pulsars we show that pulsed emission extends across almost the entire pulse profile. The pulse component widths and component separations follow a complex evolution with frequency; in some cases these parameters increase and in other cases they decrease with increasing frequency. The evolution with frequency of the polarization properties of the profile is also non-trivial. We provide evidence that the pre- and post-cursors generally have higher fractional linear polarization than the main pulse. We have obtained the spectral index and rotation measure for each pulsar by fitting across all three observing bands. For the majority of pulsars, the spectra follow a single power-law and the position angles follow a λ2 relation, as expected. However, clear deviations are seen for some pulsars. We also present phase-resolved measurements of the spectral index, fractional linear polarization and rotation measure. All these properties are shown to vary systematically over the pulse profile.

  14. The magnetic fields, ages, and original spin periods of millisecond pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Camilo, F.; Thorsett, S. E.; Kulkarni, S. R.

    1994-01-01

    Accurate determination of the spin-down rates of millisecond pulsars requires consideration of the apparent acceleration of the pulsars due to their high transverse velocities. We show that for several nearby pulsars the neglect of this effect leads to substantial errors in inferred pulsar ages and magnetic fields. Two important ramifications follow. (1) The intrinsic magnetic field strengths of all millisecond pulsars lie below 5 x 10(exp 8) G, strengthening an earlier suggestion of a 'gap' between the magnetic field strengths of millisecond pulsars and of high-mass binary pulsars such as PSR B1913+16, which are thought to have been formed by mass transfer in low-mass and high-mass X-ray binaries, respectively. This result suggests that the magnetic field strengths of recycled pulsars are related to their formation and evolution in binary systems. (2) The corrected characteristic ages of several millisecond pulsars appear to be greater than the age of the Galactic disk. We reconcile this apparent paradox by suggesting that some millisecond pulsars were born with periods close to their current periods. This conclusion has important implications for the interpretation of the cooling ages of white dwarf companions, the birthrate discrepancy between millisecond pulsars and their X-ray binary progenitors, and the possible existence of a class of weakly magnetized (B much less than 10(exp 8)G), rapidly rotating neutron stars.

  15. Evaporation of companions in VLMXBS and in binary millisecond pulsars.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shaham, J.

    The principles underlying the process of formation of a wind from a stellar atmosphere by external heating are applied to binary companions of neutron stars (NS) which are being heated by radiation from the NS in very-low-mass X-ray binaries (VLMXBs) and in binary millisecond pulsar (BMP) systems. Among others, the possibility of companion evaporation and of self-excited X-ray systems is discussed. The fast changes in the binary period of the "windy" BMP PSR 1957+20 and the nature of the newly discovered "windy" BMP PSR 1744-24A are also discussed.

  16. 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.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Cholis, Ilias; Hooper, Dan; Linden, Tim E-mail: dhooper@fnal.gov

    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.

  18. 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.

  19. Tracking interstellar space weather toward timing-array millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhat, N. D. R.; Ord, S. M.; Tremblay, S. E.; Shannon, R. M.; van Straten, W.; Kaplan, D. L.; Macquart, J.-P.; Kirsten, F.

    2016-07-01

    Recent LIGO detection of milli-Hertz gravitational wave (GW) signals from a black-hole merger event has further reinforced the important role of Pulsar timing array (PTA) experiments in the GW astronomy. PTAs exploit the clock-like stability of fast-spinning millisecond pulsars (MSPs) to make a direct detection of ultra-low frequency (nano-Hertz) gravitational waves. The science enabled by PTAs is thus highly complementary to that possible by LIGO-like detectors. PTAs are also a key science objective for the SKA. PTA efforts over the past few years suggest that interstellar propagation effects on pulsar signals may ultimately limit the detection sensitivity of PTAs unless they are accurately measured and corrected for in timing measurements. Interstellar medium (ISM) effects are much stronger at lower radio frequencies and therefore the MWA presents an exciting and unique opportunity to calibrate interstellar propagation delays. This will potentially lead to enhanced sensitivity and scientific impact of PTA projects. Since our first demonstration of ability to form a coherent (tied-array) beam by reprocessing the recorded VCS data (Bhat et al. 2016), we have successfully ported the full processing chain to the Galaxy cluster of Pawsey and demonstrated the value of high-sensitivity multi-band pulsar observations that are now possible with the MWA. Here we propose further observations of two most promising PTA pulsars that will be nightly objects in the 2016B period. Our main science driver is to characterise the nature of the turbulent ISM through high-quality scintillation and dispersion studies including the investigation of chromatic (frequency-dependent) DMs. Success of these efforts will define the breadth and scope of a more ambitious program in the future, bringing in a new science niche for the MWA and SKA-low.

  20. Tracking Interstellar Space Weather Toward Timing-Array Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhat, N. D. R.; Ord, S. M.; Tremblay, S. E.; Shannon, R. M.; van Straten, W.; Kaplan, D. L.; Macquart, J.-P.; Kirsten, F.

    2017-01-01

    The recent LIGO detection of milli-Hertz gravitational wave (GW) signals from black-hole merger events has further reinforced the important role of Pulsar timing array (PTA) experiments in the GW astronomy. PTAs exploit the clock-like stability of fast-spinning millisecond pulsars (MSPs) to make a direct detection of ultra-low frequency (nano-Hertz) gravitational waves, and this is a key science objective for the SKA. The science enabled by PTAs is highly complementary to that possible with LIGO-like detectors. PTA efforts of the past few years clearly suggest that interstellar propagation effects on pulsar signals may ultimately limit the detection sensitivity of PTAs if they are not accurately measured and corrected for in timing measurements. Interstellar medium (ISM) effects are much stronger at lower radio frequencies and therefore the MWA presents an exciting and unique opportunity to calibrate interstellar propagation delays. This will potentially lead to enhanced sensitivity and scientific impact of PTA projects. Since our demonstration early this year of our ability to form a coherent (tied-array) beam by re-processing the recorded VCS data (Bhat et al. 2016), we have successfully ported the full processing pipeline on to the Galaxy cluster of Pawsey and also demonstrated the value of high-sensitivity multi-band pulsar observations that are now possible with the MWA. Here we propose further observations of three most promising PTA pulsars that will be nightly objects in the 2017A period. The main science driver is to characterise the nature of the turbulent ISM through high-quality scintillation and dispersion studies including the investigation of chromatic (frequency-dependent) DMs. Success of these efforts will define the breadth and scope of a more ambitious program in the future, bringing in a new science niche for MWA and SKA-low.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. A massive millisecond pulsar in an eccentric binary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barr, E. D.; Freire, P. C. C.; Kramer, M.; Champion, D. J.; Berezina, M.; Bassa, C. G.; Lyne, A. G.; Stappers, B. W.

    2017-02-01

    The recent discovery of a population of eccentric (e ∼ 0.1) millisecond pulsar (MSP) binaries with low-mass white dwarf companions in the Galactic field represents a challenge to evolutionary models that explain MSP formation as recycling: All such models predict that the orbits become highly circularized during a long period of accretion. The members of this new population exhibit remarkably similar properties (orbital periods, eccentricities, companion masses, spin periods), and several models have been put forward that suggest a common formation channel. In this work, we present the results of an extensive timing campaign focusing on one member of this new population, PSR J1946+3417. Through the measurement of both the advance of periastron and the Shapiro delay for this system, we determine the mass of the pulsar, mass of the companion and the inclination of the orbit to be 1.828(22) M⊙, 0.2656(19) M⊙ and 76.4 ± 0.6 degrees, respectively, under the assumption that general relativity is the true description of gravity. Notably, this is the third highest mass measured for any pulsar. Using these masses and the astrometric properties of PSR J1946+3417, we examine three proposed formation channels for eccentric MSP binaries. While our results are consistent with circumbinary disc-driven eccentricity growth or neutron star to strange star phase transition, we rule out rotationally delayed accretion-induced collapse as the mechanism responsible for the configuration of the PSR J1946+3417 system.

  4. 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.

  5. SEARCHES FOR MILLISECOND PULSAR CANDIDATES AMONG THE UNIDENTIFIED FERMI OBJECTS

    SciTech Connect

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

    2015-08-10

    Here we report the results of searching millisecond pulsar (MSP) candidates from the Fermi LAT second source catalog (2FGL). Seven unassociated γ-ray sources in this catalog are identified as promising MSP candidates based on their γ-ray properties. Through the X-ray analysis, we have detected possible X-ray counterparts, localized to an arcsecond accuracy. We have systematically estimated their X-ray fluxes and compared them with the corresponding γ-ray fluxes. The X-ray to γ-ray flux ratios for 2FGL J1653.6-0159 and 2FGL J1946.4-5402 are comparable with the typical value for pulsars. For 2FGL J1625.2-0020, 2FGL J1653.6-0159, and 2FGL J1946.4-5402, their candidate X-ray counterparts are bright enough to perform a detailed spectral and temporal analysis to discriminate their thermal/non-thermal nature and search for the periodic signal. We have also searched for possible optical/IR counterparts at the X-ray positions. For the optical/IR source coincident with the brightest X-ray object associated with 2FGL J1120.0-2204, its spectral energy distribution is comparable with a late-type star. Evidence for the variability has also been found by examining its optical light curve. All the aforementioned 2FGL sources resemble a pulsar in one or more aspects, making them promising targets for follow-up investigations.

  6. 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.

  7. Timing of Five PALFA-discovered Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-12-01

    We report the discovery and timing results for five millisecond pulsars (MSPs) from the Arecibo PALFA survey: PSRs J1906+0055, J1914+0659, J1933+1726, J1938+2516, and J1957+2516. Timing observations of the five pulsars were conducted with the Arecibo and Lovell telescopes for time spans ranging from 1.5 to 3.3 years. All of the MSPs except one (PSR J1914+0659) are in binary systems with low eccentricities. PSR J1957+2516 is likely a redback pulsar, with a ˜ 0.1 {M}⊙ companion and possible eclipses that last ˜10% of the orbit. The position of PSR J1957+2516 is also coincident with a near-infrared source. All five MSPs are distant (\\gt 3.1 kpc) as determined from their dispersion measures, and none of them show evidence of γ-ray pulsations in a fold of Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope data. These five MSPs bring the total number of MSPs discovered by the PALFA survey to 26 and further demonstrate the power of this survey in finding distant, highly dispersed MSPs deep in the Galactic plane.

  8. TIMING OF FIVE MILLISECOND PULSARS DISCOVERED IN THE PALFA SURVEY

    SciTech Connect

    Scholz, P.; Kaspi, V. M.; Ferdman, R. D.; Karako-Argaman, C.; Lyne, A. G.; Stappers, B. W.; Bogdanov, S.; Camilo, F.; Cordes, J. M.; Brazier, A.; Chatterjee, S.; Crawford, F.; Freire, P. C. C.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Lorimer, D. R.; Cardoso, R. F.; Stairs, I. H.; Allen, B.; Deneva, J. S.; Jenet, F. A.; and others

    2015-02-20

    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{sup –3}, within the top 20% of all known Galactic field MSPs) and are faint (1.4 GHz flux density ≲0.1 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{sup –3}, the highest of all known MSPs. Such distant, faint MSPs are important input for accurately modeling the total Galactic MSP population.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Millisecond pulsars with r-modes as steady gravitational radiators.

    PubMed

    Reisenegger, Andreas; Bonacić, Axel

    2003-11-14

    Millisecond pulsars (MSPs) probably achieve their fast rotation by mass transfer from their companion stars in low-mass x-ray binaries (LMXBs). The lack of MSPs and LMXBs rotating near breakup has been attributed to the accretion torque being balanced, at fast rotation, by gravitational radiation, perhaps caused by an unstable oscillation mode. It has been argued that internal dissipation involving hyperons may cause LMXBs to evolve into a quasisteady state, with nearly constant rotation rate, temperature, and mode amplitude. We show that MSPs descending from these LMXBs spend a long time in a similar state, as extremely steady sources of gravitational waves and thermal x rays, while they spin down due to gravitational radiation and the standard magnetic torque. Observed MSP braking torques already place meaningful constraints on this scenario.

  12. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-25

    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.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. The Fading of Transient Anomalous X-Ray Pulsar XTE J1810-197

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halpern, J. P.; Gotthelf, E. V.

    2005-01-01

    Three observations of the 5.54 s transient anomalous X-ray pulsar XTE J1810-197 obtained over 6 months with the Newton X-ray Multi-Mirror (XMM-Newton) mission are used to study its spectrum and pulsed light curve as the source fades from outburst. The decay is consistent with an exponential of time constant ~300 days but not a power law as predicted in some models of sudden deep crustal heating events. All spectra are well fitted by a blackbody plus a steep power law, a problematic model that is commonly fitted to anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs). A two-temperature blackbody fit is also acceptable and better motivated physically in view of the faint optical/IR fluxes, the X-ray pulse shapes that weakly depend on energy in XTE J1810-197, and the inferred emitting areas that are less than or equal to the surface area of a neutron star. The fitted temperatures remained the same while the flux declined by 46%, which can be interpreted as a decrease in area of the emitting regions. The pulsar continues to spin down, albeit at a reduced rate of (5.1+/-1.6)×10-12 s s-1. The inferred characteristic age τc≡P/2P~17,000 yr, magnetic field strength Bs~1.7×1014 G, and outburst properties are consistent with both the outburst and quiescent X-ray luminosities being powered by magnetic field decay, i.e., XTE J1810-197 is a magnetar.

  17. 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.

  18. The evolution of binary millisecond pulsars and the formation of planets around them

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banit, Menashe

    1993-01-01

    We show that the formation of planets around a millisecond pulsar may occur in a very late phase of Low-Mass X-Ray Binary (LMXB) or Binary-Millisecond-Pulsar (BMP) evolution. We propose a new mechanism in which the companion winds in these phases form through the combined action of the radiation heat on the companion's atmosphere and the radiation force on the slowly lifting wind. This mechanism can produce relatively high mass flow rates, and provided the companion is bloated, it explains the observed rapid angular momentum loss of the binary millisecond pulsar 1957 + 20. With such wind the evaporated matter can be supplied to a circumbinary 'excretion' disk in which the physical conditions, similar to those appropriate for the BMP1957 + 20 system, may allow the formation of planets like those observed in PSR1257 + 12. This model connects the conventional evolutionary scenario for the formation of a millisecond pulsar with the formation of planets around it.

  19. Search for millisecond pulsars at the GMRT and the exotic discoveries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhaswati Bhattacharyya, Bhaswati

    There are, arguably, no other astronomical object whose discovery and subsequent studies provides more insight in such a rich variety of physics and astrophysics than the millisecond pulsars (MSPs). MSPs are a small sub-class of pulsars, rotating with periods of only a few milliseconds and due to their extraordinary rotational stability, MSPs can be considered as astrophysical clocks. The search for such exotic objects will not only enhance the MSP population, but will also allow much wider probe to explore their evolutionary history. We have discovered six MSPs with much diverse characteristics at the positions of Fermi LAT unassociated sources using the GMRT. Being the first galactic disk millisecond pulsars discovered at the GMRT, these discoveries are very important scientific achievement from India and illustrate the importance of low-frequency search for nearby millisecond pulsars. The discovery of these precise astrophysical clocks demands much finer grid in search phase space, which is completely driven by the number crunching capability of the High Performance Compute engine. The discoveries of binary MSPs in exotic evolutionary phases demands complete 3-D search. For example, 7.5 Tflops of compute power is used for the discovery of a very compact binary MSP, a Black Widow pulsar. This pulsar eclipses for about 13% of its orbit by a very low-mass companion (0.017 M_{⊙}). Such Black Widow pulsars are missing link between the isolated and fully recycled pulsars, where the pulsar is ablating its companion creating significant amount of intra-binary material to obscure the pulsar emission. Radio timing ephemeris allowed us to detect the gamma-ray pulsations from this millisecond pulsar. The details of the GMRT discoveries, the interesting results from our observations and the possible scientific impact of the discoveries of such exotic systems will be illustrated in this presentation.

  20. Durability of the accretion disk of millisecond pulsars.

    PubMed

    Michel, F C; Dessler, A J

    1985-05-24

    Pulsars with pulsation periods in the millisecond range are thought to be neutron stars that have acquired an extraordinarily short spin period through the accretion of stellar material spiraling down onto the neutron star from a nearby companion. Nearly all the angular momentum and most of the mass of the companion star is transferred to the neutron star. During this process, wherein the neutron star consumes its companion, it is required that a disk of stellar material be formed around the neutron star. In conventional models it is supposed that the disk is somehow lost when the accretion phase is finished, so that only the rapidly spinning neutron star remains. However, it is possible that, after the accretion phase, a residual disk remains in stable orbit around the neutron star. The end result of such an accretion process is an object that looks much like a miniature (about 100 kilometers), heavy version of Saturn: a central object (the neutron star) surrounded by a durable disk.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. DISCOVERY OF TWO MILLISECOND PULSARS IN FERMI SOURCES WITH THE NANCAY RADIO TELESCOPE

    SciTech Connect

    Cognard, I.; Johnson, T. J.; Harding, A. K.; Ferrara, E. C.; Smith, D. A.; Dumora, D.; Wolff, M. T.; Grove, J. E.; Cheung, C. C.; Abdo, A. A.; Donato, D.; Ballet, J.; Desvignes, G.; Johnston, S.; Keith, M. E-mail: guillemo@mpifr-bonn.mpg.de

    2011-05-01

    We report the discovery of two millisecond pulsars in a search for radio pulsations at the positions of Fermi-Large Area Telescope sources with no previously known counterparts, using the Nancay Radio Telescope. The two millisecond pulsars, PSRs J2017+0603 and J2302+4442, have rotational periods of 2.896 and 5.192 ms and are both in binary systems with low-eccentricity orbits and orbital periods of 2.2 and 125.9 days, respectively, suggesting long recycling processes. Gamma-ray pulsations were subsequently detected for both objects, indicating that they power the associated Fermi sources in which they were found. The gamma-ray light curves and spectral properties are similar to those of previously detected gamma-ray millisecond pulsars. Detailed modeling of the observed radio and gamma-ray light curves shows that the gamma-ray emission seems to originate at high altitudes in their magnetospheres. Additionally, X-ray observations revealed the presence of an X-ray source at the position of PSR J2302+4442, consistent with thermal emission from a neutron star. These discoveries along with the numerous detections of radio-loud millisecond pulsars in gamma rays suggest that many Fermi sources with no known counterpart could be unknown millisecond pulsars.

  4. The NANOGrav Eleven-Year Data Set: High-precision timing of 48 Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nice, David J.; NANOGrav

    2017-01-01

    Gravitational waves from sources such as supermassive black hole binary systems perturb times-of-flight of signals traveling from pulsars to the Earth. The NANOGrav collaboration aims to measure these perturbations in high precision millisecond pulsar timing data and thus to directly detect gravitational waves and characterize the gravitational wave sources. By observing pulsars over time spans of many years, we are most sensitive to gravitational waves at nanohertz frequencies. This work is complimentary to ground based detectors such as LIGO, which are sensitive to gravitational waves with frequencies 10 orders of magnitude higher.In this presentation we describe the NANOGrav eleven-year data set. This includes pulsar time-of-arrival measurements from 48 millisecond pulsars made with 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). The data set consists of more than 300,000 pulse time-of-arrival measurements made in nearly 7000 unique observations (a given pulsar observed with a given telescope receiver on a given day). In the best cases, measurement precision is better than 100 nanoseconds, and in nearly all cases it is better than 1 microsecond.All pulsars in our program are observed at intervals of 3 to 4 weeks. Observations use wideband data acquisition systems and are made at two receivers at widely separated frequencies at each epoch, allowing for characterization and mitigation of the effects of interstellar medium on the signal propagation. Observation of a large number of pulsars allows for searches for correlated perturbations among the pulsar signals, which is 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. In addition, seven pulsars are observed at weekly intervals. This increases our sensitivity

  5. 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.

  6. Shapiro Delay in the Low Mass Binary Millisecond Pulsar J1713+0747

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Camilo, F.; Foster, R. S.; Wolszczan, A.

    1993-12-01

    The binary millisecond pulsar J1713+0747 (P=4.57 ms;P_b=67.8 d) was discovered in a systematic continuing survey for millisecond pulsars with the Arecibo radio telescope (Foster, Wolszczan & Camilo 1993, ApJ, 410, L91). We have carried out multi-frequency observations of this object at approximately bi-weekly intervals. With an rms residual in the predicted vs. observed times-of-arrival (TOAs) of <0.5 mu sec, and a large characteristic age, tau_c ~ 10(10) yr, this object is one of the most precise celestial clocks among all known pulsars. We detect a signature in the TOA residuals which is most naturally interpreted in terms of a general relativistic ``Shapiro Delay'', caused as the pulsar signals traverse the gravitational potential well of its ~ 0.2 M_sun companion, with the orbital angular momentum of the system lying nearly parallel to the plane of the sky. With this information we can determine the mass of the (presumed) white dwarf companion star, and the inclination angle of the orbit. Knowing the pulsar mass function (0.0079 M_sun), we can in turn determine the mass of the pulsar itself. This measurement is important, among other reasons, for comparisons against the evolutionary scenarios that predict substantial mass accretion by the pulsar as it is spun up to millisecond periods by mass transfer from its companion in a low mass x-ray binary phase.

  7. 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.

  8. X-ray bounds on the r-mode amplitude in millisecond pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwenzer, Kai; Boztepe, Tuğba; Güver, Tolga; Vurgun, Eda

    2017-04-01

    r-mode asteroseismology provides a unique way to study the internal composition of compact stars. Due to their precise timing, recycled millisecond radio pulsars present a particularly promising class of sources. Although their thermal properties are still poorly constrained, X-ray data is very useful for asteroseismology since r-modes could strongly heat a star. Using known and new upper bounds on the temperatures and luminosities of several non-accreting millisecond radio pulsars, we derive bounds on the r-mode amplitude as low as α ≲ 10-8 and discuss the impact on scenarios for their internal composition.

  9. 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.

  10. Nuclear-powered millisecond pulsars and the maximum spin frequency of neutron stars.

    PubMed

    Chakrabarty, Deepto; Morgan, Edward H; Muno, Michael P; Galloway, Duncan K; Wijnands, Rudy; Van Der Klis, Michiel; Markwardt, Craig B

    2003-07-03

    Millisecond pulsars are neutron stars that are thought to have been spun-up by mass accretion from a stellar companion. It is not known whether there is a natural brake for this process, or if it continues until the centrifugal breakup limit is reached at submillisecond periods. Many neutron stars that are accreting mass from a companion star exhibit thermonuclear X-ray bursts that last tens of seconds, caused by unstable nuclear burning on their surfaces. Millisecond-period brightness oscillations during bursts from ten neutron stars (as distinct from other rapid X-ray variability that is also observed) are thought to measure the stellar spin, but direct proof of a rotational origin has been lacking. Here we report the detection of burst oscillations at the known spin frequency of an accreting millisecond pulsar, and we show that these oscillations always have the same rotational phase. This firmly establishes burst oscillations as nuclear-powered pulsations tracing the spin of accreting neutron stars, corroborating earlier evidence. The distribution of spin frequencies of the 11 nuclear-powered pulsars cuts off well below the breakup frequency for most neutron-star models, supporting theoretical predictions that gravitational radiation losses can limit accretion torques in spinning up millisecond pulsars.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. The Enigmatic Binary PSR J1723-28: A Baby Millisecond Pulsar?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crawford, Fronefield; Possenti, Andrea; Kramer, Michael; Lyne, Andrew; McLaughlin, Maura; Burgay, Marta; D'Amico, Nichi; Freire, Paulo; Camilo, Fernando; Stairs, Ingrid; Lorimer, Duncan Ross

    2010-04-01

    We propose timing observations of PSR J1723-28, a highly-accelerated binary millisecond pulsar (MSP) discovered in the Parkes multibeam survey. This pulsar has proved difficult to detect reliably in Parkes follow-up observations at 1400 MHz, but several recent GBT detections at 2000 MHz and a handful of prior 1400 MHz Parkes detections have yielded an orbital ephemeris indicating that the pulsar has a low-mass companion which may be eclipsing the pulsar. J1723-28 may be a just-formed "baby MSP" with an unevolved (possibly extended) companion that is transitioning from a low-mass X-ray binary phase to a MSP phase (perhaps similar to the recently published PSR J1023+0038). We propose high-frequency observations with Parkes to obtain a phase-connected timing solution for the pulsar, determine the nature of the binary system, and localize the pulsar position with arcsecond precision. Localization will determine if a nearby X-ray source is associated with the pulsar. For this purpose, we request 6 observations over the course of this term of 1.25 hr each with either the Galileo 13 cm receiver or the 10/50 cm receiver (depending on receiver availability at the time of observation).

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. VLBI Astrometry of the Millisecond Pulsar B1937+21

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dewey, Rachel J.; Ojeda, Maria Rose; Gwinn, Carl R.; Jones, Dayton L.; Davis, Michael M.

    1996-01-01

    We report the results of astrometric VLBI observations of PSR B1937+21. Observations of the pulsar and a nearby quasar were made at 1.67 GHz, using four antennas: Arecibo, the very large array, and the DSN 70 m antennas in California and Spain. We determine a position of α=19h39m38s.5611±0s.0003 and ρ=21°34'59".118±0.016 for the pulsar in the lERS extragalactic reference frame at epoch 1990.2. The accuracy of our result in right ascension is limited by systematic uncertainties in the ionospheric delay calibration, and larger-than-expected random scatter in the pulsar delays related to interstellar scintillation. The accuracy in declination is limited by the lack of a long north-south baseline in our experiment and the uncertainty of the location of the Arecibo antenna in the lERS celestial reference frame. When compared with the pulsar's timing position [Kaspi, et al., ApJ, 428, 713 (1994)] in the planetary ephemeris reference frame, our result yields a measurement of the offset of the lERS reference frame and the DE200 planetary ephemeris frame of Δα(IERS-DE200)=0.0008±0s0.0003 and Δρ(IERS-DE200)=-0.024±0.016, which is in reasonable agreement with the frame-tie rotation determined by Folkner et al. [ARA&A, 297, 279, (1994)].

  19. 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.

  20. Radio upper limits for the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar IGR J17511-3057

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller-Jones, J. C. A.; Russell, D. M.; Migliari, S.

    2009-10-01

    We report on recent radio observations of the newly-detected accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar, IGR J17511-3057 (ATels #2196, #2197, #2198, #2199, #2215, #2216, #2220, #2221). We used the Very Large Array (VLA) to observe the source under observing program AM971. The array was in its relatively compact 'C' and 'DNC' configurations, and the observations were made at 8.46 GHz. In no case was the source significantly detected.

  1. FORMATION OF MILLISECOND PULSARS FROM INTERMEDIATE- AND LOW-MASS X-RAY BINARIES

    SciTech Connect

    Shao Yong; Li Xiangdong

    2012-09-01

    We present a systematic study of the evolution of intermediate- and low-mass X-ray binaries consisting of an accreting neutron star of mass 1.0-1.8 M{sub Sun} and a donor star of mass 1.0-6.0 M{sub Sun }. In our calculations we take into account physical processes such as unstable disk accretion, radio ejection, bump-induced detachment, and outflow from the L{sub 2} point. Comparing the calculated results with the observations of binary radio pulsars, we report the following results. (1) The allowed parameter space for forming binary pulsars in the initial orbital period-donor mass plane increases with increasing neutron star mass. This may help explain why some millisecond pulsars with orbital periods longer than {approx}60 days seem to have less massive white dwarfs than expected. Alternatively, some of these wide binary pulsars may be formed through mass transfer driven by planet/brown-dwarf-involved common envelope evolution. (2) Some of the pulsars in compact binaries might have evolved from intermediate-mass X-ray binaries with anomalous magnetic braking. (3) The equilibrium spin periods of neutron stars in low-mass X-ray binaries are in general shorter than the observed spin periods of binary pulsars by more than one order of magnitude, suggesting that either the simple equilibrium spin model does not apply or there are other mechanisms/processes spinning down the neutron stars.

  2. The implications of a companion enhanced wind on millisecond pulsar production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smedley, Sarah L.; Tout, Christopher A.; Ferrario, Lilia; Wickramasinghe, Dayal T.

    2017-01-01

    The most frequently seen binary companions to millisecond pulsars (MSPs) are helium white dwarfs. The standard rejuvenation mechanism, in which a low- to intermediate-mass companion to a neutron star fills its Roche lobe between central hydrogen exhaustion and core helium ignition, is the most plausible formation mechanism. We have investigated whether the observed population can realistically be formed via this mechanism. We used the Cambridge STARS code to make models of Case B Roche-lobe overflow with Reimers' mass-loss from the donor. We find that the range of initial orbital periods required to produce the currently observed range of orbital periods of MSPs is extremely narrow. To reduce this fine tuning, we introduce a companion enhanced wind (CEW) that strips the donor of its envelope more quickly so that systems can detach at shorter periods. Our models indicate that the fine tuning can be significantly reduced if a CEW is active. Because significant mass is lost owing to a CEW, we expect some binary pulsars to accrete less than the 0.1 M⊙ needed to spin them up to millisecond periods. This can account for mildly recycled pulsars present along the entire Mc-Porb relation. Systems with Pspin > 30 ms are consistent with this, but too few of these mildly recycled pulsars have yet been observed to make a significant comparison.

  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. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Chandra X-ray Observations of 12 Millisecond Pulsars in the Globular Cluster M28

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanov, Slavko; van den Berg, Maureen; Servillat, Mathieu; Heinke, Craig O.; Grindlay, Jonathan E.; Stairs, Ingrid H.; Ransom, Scott M.; Freire, Paulo C. C.; Bégin, Steve; Becker, Werner

    2011-04-01

    We present a Chandra X-ray Observatory investigation of the millisecond pulsars in the globular cluster M28 (NGC 6626). In what is one of the deepest X-ray observations of a globular cluster, we firmly detect seven and possibly detect two of the 12 known M28 pulsars. With the exception of PSRs B1821-24 and J1824-2452H, the detected pulsars have relatively soft spectra, with X-ray luminosities 1030-1031 erg s-1 (0.3-8 keV), similar to most "recycled" pulsars in 47 Tucanae and the field of the Galaxy, implying thermal emission from the pulsar magnetic polar caps. We present the most detailed X-ray spectrum to date of the energetic PSR B1821-24. It is well described by a purely non-thermal spectrum with spectral photon index Γ = 1.23 and luminosity 1.4 × 1033Θ(D/5.5 kpc)2 erg s-1 (0.3-8 keV), where Θ is the fraction of the sky covered by the X-ray emission beam(s). We find no evidence for the previously reported line emission feature around 3.3 keV, most likely as a consequence of improvements in instrument calibration. The X-ray spectrum and pulse profile of PSR B1821-24 suggest that the bulk of unpulsed emission from this pulsar is not of thermal origin, and is likely due to low-level non-thermal magnetospheric radiation, an unresolved pulsar wind nebula, and/or small-angle scattering of the pulsed X-rays by interstellar dust grains. The peculiar binary PSR J1824-2452H shows a relatively hard X-ray spectrum and possible variability at the binary period, indicative of an intrabinary shock formed by interaction between the relativistic pulsar wind and matter from its non-degenerate companion star.

  7. A Brown Dwarf Companion for the Accreting Millisecond Pulsar SAX J1808.4-3658

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bildsten, Lars; Chakrabarty, Deepto

    2001-08-01

    The BeppoSAX Wide Field Cameras have revealed a population of faint neutron star X-ray transients in the Galactic bulge. King conjectured that these neutron stars are accreting from brown dwarfs with a time-averaged mass transfer rate ~10-11 Msolar yr-1 that is low enough for accretion disk instabilities. We show that the measured orbital parameters of the 401 Hz accreting millisecond pulsar SAX J1808.4-3658 support this hypothesis. A main-sequence mass donor requires a nearly face-on inclination and a higher than observed, and can thus be excluded. However, the range of allowed inclinations is substantially relaxed, and the predicted is consistent with that observed if a hot 0.05 Msolar dwarf is the donor. The remaining puzzle is explaining the brown dwarf radius required (0.13 Rsolar) to fill the Roche lobe. Recent observational and theoretical work has shown that all transiently accreting neutron stars have a minimum luminosity in quiescence set by the time-averaged mass transfer rate onto the neutron star. We show here that the constant heating of the brown dwarf by this quiescent neutron star emission appears adequate to maintain the higher entropy implied by a 0.13 Rsolar radius. All of our considerations very strongly bolster the case that SAX J1808.4-3658 is a progenitor to compact millisecond radio pulsar binaries (e.g., like those found by Camilo and collaborators in 47 Tuc). The very low of SAX J1808.4-3658 implies that the progenitors to these radio pulsars are long-lived (~Gyr) transient systems, rather than short-lived (~Myr) Eddington-limited accretors. Hence, the accreting progenitor population to millisecond radio pulsars in 47 Tuc could still be present and found in quiescence with Chandra.

  8. FOUR HIGHLY DISPERSED MILLISECOND PULSARS DISCOVERED IN THE ARECIBO PALFA GALACTIC PLANE SURVEY

    SciTech Connect

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

    2012-09-20

    We present the discovery and phase-coherent timing of four highly dispersed millisecond pulsars (MSPs) from the Arecibo PALFA Galactic plane survey: PSRs J1844+0115, J1850+0124, J1900+0308, and J1944+2236. Three of the four pulsars are in binary systems with low-mass companions, which are most likely white dwarfs, and which have orbital periods on the order of days. The fourth pulsar is isolated. All four pulsars have large dispersion measures (DM >100 pc cm{sup -3}), are distant ({approx}> 3.4 kpc), faint at 1.4 GHz ({approx}< 0.2 mJy), and are fully recycled (with spin periods P between 3.5 and 4.9 ms). The three binaries also have very small orbital eccentricities, as expected for tidally circularized, fully recycled systems with low-mass companions. These four pulsars have DM/P ratios that are among the highest values for field MSPs in the Galaxy. These discoveries bring the total number of confirmed MSPs from the PALFA survey to 15. The discovery of these MSPs illustrates the power of PALFA for finding weak, distant MSPs at low-Galactic latitudes. This is important for accurate estimates of the Galactic MSP population and for the number of MSPs that the Square Kilometer Array can be expected to detect.

  9. The Effect of Transient Accretion on the Spin-up of Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhattacharyya, Sudip; Chakrabarty, Deepto

    2017-01-01

    A millisecond pulsar is a neutron star that has been substantially spun up by accretion from a binary companion. A previously unrecognized factor governing the spin evolution of such pulsars is the crucial effect of nonsteady or transient accretion. We numerically compute the evolution of accreting neutron stars through a series of outburst and quiescent phases, considering the drastic variation of the accretion rate and the standard disk–magnetosphere interaction. We find that, for the same long-term average accretion rate, X-ray transients can spin up pulsars to rates several times higher than can persistent accretors, even when the spin-down due to electromagnetic radiation during quiescence is included. We also compute an analytical expression for the equilibrium spin frequency in transients, by taking spin equilibrium to mean that no net angular momentum is transferred to the neutron star in each outburst cycle. We find that the equilibrium spin rate for transients, which depends on the peak accretion rate during outbursts, can be much higher than that for persistent sources. This explains our numerical finding. This finding implies that any meaningful study of neutron star spin and magnetic field distributions requires the inclusion of the transient accretion effect, since most accreting neutron star sources are transients. Our finding also implies the existence of a submillisecond pulsar population, which is not observed. This may point to the need for a competing spin-down mechanism for the fastest-rotating accreting pulsars, such as gravitational radiation.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. The NANOGrav Nine-year Data Set: Excess Noise in Millisecond Pulsar Arrival Times

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lam, M. T.; Cordes, J. M.; Chatterjee, S.; Arzoumanian, Z.; Crowter, K.; Demorest, P. B.; Dolch, T.; Ellis, J. A.; Ferdman, R. D.; Fonseca, E.; Gonzalez, M. E.; Jones, G.; Jones, M. L.; Levin, L.; Madison, D. R.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Nice, D. J.; Pennucci, T. T.; Ransom, S. M.; Shannon, R. M.; Siemens, X.; Stairs, I. H.; Stovall, K.; Swiggum, J. K.; Zhu, W. W.

    2017-01-01

    Gravitational wave (GW) astronomy using a pulsar timing array requires high-quality millisecond pulsars (MSPs), correctable interstellar propagation delays, and high-precision measurements of pulse times of arrival. Here we identify noise in timing residuals that exceeds that predicted for arrival time estimation for MSPs observed by the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves. We characterize the excess noise using variance and structure function analyses. We find that 26 out of 37 pulsars show inconsistencies with a white-noise-only model based on the short timescale analysis of each pulsar, and we demonstrate that the excess noise has a red power spectrum for 15 pulsars. We also decompose the excess noise into chromatic (radio-frequency-dependent) and achromatic components. Associating the achromatic red-noise component with spin noise and including additional power-spectrum-based estimates from the literature, we estimate a scaling law in terms of spin parameters (frequency and frequency derivative) and data-span length and compare it to the scaling law of Shannon & Cordes. We briefly discuss our results in terms of detection of GWs at nanohertz frequencies.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. PSR J1723-2837: An Eclipsing Binary Radio Millisecond Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2013-10-01

    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 ⊙ and an orbital inclination angle range of between 30° and 41°, assuming a pulsar mass range of 1.4-2.0 M ⊙. 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.

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

    PubMed

    Bartels, Richard; Krishnamurthy, Suraj; Weniger, Christoph

    2016-02-05

    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.

  17. 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.

  18. ON THE TRANSITION FROM ACCRETION-POWERED TO ROTATION-POWERED MILLISECOND PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

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

    2010-11-01

    The heating associated with the deposition of {gamma}-rays in an accretion disk is proposed as a mechanism to facilitate the transformation of a low-mass X-ray binary to the radio millisecond pulsar (MSP) phase. The {gamma}-ray emission produced in the outer gap accelerator in the pulsar magnetosphere likely irradiates the surrounding disk, resulting in its heating and the possible escape of matter from the system. We apply the model to PSR J1023+0038, which has recently been discovered as a newly born rotation-powered MSP. The predicted {gamma}-ray luminosity {approx}6 x 10{sup 34} erg s{sup -1} can be sufficient to explain the disappearance of the truncated disk existing during the 8 month-2 yr period prior to the 2002 observations of J1023+0038 and the energy input required for the anomalously bright optical emission of its companion star.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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).

  2. A Chandra X-Ray Observation of the Binary Millisecond Pulsar PSR J1023+0038

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanov, Slavko; Archibald, Anne M.; Hessels, Jason W. T.; Kaspi, Victoria M.; 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 (12.5σ) 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 X <~ 3.6 × 1029 erg s-1 (0.3-8 keV), <~ 7 × 10-6 of the pulsar spin-down luminosity, for a distance of 1.3 kpc and an assumed power-law spectrum with photon index Γ = 1.5.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. RXTE and BeppoSAX Observations of the Transient X-ray Pulsar XTE J 18591+083

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Corbet, R. H. D.; intZand, J. J. M.; Levine, A. M.; Marshall, F. E.

    2008-01-01

    We present observations of the 9.8 s X-ray pulsar XTE J159+083 made with the All-Sky Monitor (ASM) and Proportional Counter Array (PCA) on board the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE), and the Wide Field Cameras (WFC) on board BeppoSAX. The ASM data cover a 12 year time interval and show that an extended outburst occurred between approximately MJD50, 250, and 50, 460 (1996 June 16 to 1997 January 12). The ASM data excluding this outburst interval suggest a possible 61 day modulation. Eighteen sets of PCA observations were obtained over an approx. one month interval in 1999. The flux variability measured with the PCA appears consistent with the possible period found with the ASM. The PCA measurements of the pulse period showed it to decrease non-monotonically and then to increase significantly. Doppler shifts due to orbital motion rather than accretion torques appear to be better able to explain the pulse period changes. Observations with the WFC during the extended outburst give an error box which is consistent with a previously determined PCA error box but is significantly smaller. The transient nature of XTE J1859+083 and the length of its pulse period are consistent with it being a Be/neutral star binary. The possible 61 day orbital period would be of the expected length for a Be star system with a 9.8 s pulse period.

  6. CHANDRA X-RAY OBSERVATIONS OF 12 MILLISECOND PULSARS IN THE GLOBULAR CLUSTER M28

    SciTech Connect

    Bogdanov, Slavko; Van den Berg, Maureen; Servillat, Mathieu; Grindlay, Jonathan E.; Heinke, Craig O.; Stairs, Ingrid H.; Begin, Steve; Ransom, Scott M.; Freire, Paulo C. C.; Becker, Werner

    2011-04-01

    We present a Chandra X-ray Observatory investigation of the millisecond pulsars in the globular cluster M28 (NGC 6626). In what is one of the deepest X-ray observations of a globular cluster, we firmly detect seven and possibly detect two of the 12 known M28 pulsars. With the exception of PSRs B1821-24 and J1824-2452H, the detected pulsars have relatively soft spectra, with X-ray luminosities 10{sup 30}-10{sup 31} erg s{sup -1} (0.3-8 keV), similar to most 'recycled' pulsars in 47 Tucanae and the field of the Galaxy, implying thermal emission from the pulsar magnetic polar caps. We present the most detailed X-ray spectrum to date of the energetic PSR B1821-24. It is well described by a purely non-thermal spectrum with spectral photon index {Gamma} = 1.23 and luminosity 1.4 x 10{sup 33}{Theta}(D/5.5 kpc){sup 2} erg s{sup -1} (0.3-8 keV), where {Theta} is the fraction of the sky covered by the X-ray emission beam(s). We find no evidence for the previously reported line emission feature around 3.3 keV, most likely as a consequence of improvements in instrument calibration. The X-ray spectrum and pulse profile of PSR B1821-24 suggest that the bulk of unpulsed emission from this pulsar is not of thermal origin, and is likely due to low-level non-thermal magnetospheric radiation, an unresolved pulsar wind nebula, and/or small-angle scattering of the pulsed X-rays by interstellar dust grains. The peculiar binary PSR J1824-2452H shows a relatively hard X-ray spectrum and possible variability at the binary period, indicative of an intrabinary shock formed by interaction between the relativistic pulsar wind and matter from its non-degenerate companion star.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. Observing and Modeling the Optical Counterparts of Short-Period Binary Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schroeder, Joshua

    In this dissertation, I explore the subject of short-period binary millisecond pulsars discovered by the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope and radio follow-up teams, and present observations of fields containing eight recently discovered short-period (Porb < 1 d) binary millisecond pulsars using the telescopes at MDM Observatory. The goal of these observations was to detect the optical counterparts of the binaries and, for the best-suited counterparts detected, to observe the photometric variation of the companion that happens over the course of the orbit in various filters. The hope was to then use the light curves to model the systems and obtain constraints on the mass of the neutron stars which are likely to be some of the most massive neutron stars in the galaxy. Optical counterparts to four of these systems are detected, one of which, PSR J2214+3000, is a novel detection. Additionally, I present the fully orbital phase-resolved B, V , and R light curves of the optical counterparts to two objects, PSR J1810+1744 and PSR J2215+5135, for which I employ the ELC model of Orosz & Hauschildt (2000) to measure the unknown system parameters. For PSR J1810+1744 I 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 MNS > 1.75 solar masses; at the 3-sigma level. I also find a discrepancy between the model temperature and the measured colors of this object which I 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 (Mc > 0.1 solar masses), I propose that similar

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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).

  13. EVOLUTION OF TRANSIENT LOW-MASS X-RAY BINARIES TO REDBACK MILLISECOND PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Jia, Kun; Li, Xiang-Dong

    2015-11-20

    Redback millisecond pulsars (MSPs; hereafter redbacks) are a subpopulation of eclipsing MSPs in close binaries. The formation processes of these systems are not clear. The three pulsars showing transitions between rotation- and accretion-powered states belong to both redbacks and transient low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs), suggesting a possible evolutionary link between them. Through binary evolution calculations, we show that the accretion disks in almost all LMXBs are subject to the thermal-viscous instability during certain evolutionary stages, and the parameter space for the disk instability covers the distribution of known redbacks in the orbital period—companion mass plane. We accordingly suggest that the abrupt reduction of the mass accretion rate during quiescence of transient LMXBs provides a plausible way to switch on the pulsar activity, leading to the formation of redbacks, if the neutron star has been spun up to be an energetic MSP. We investigate the evolution of redbacks, taking into account the evaporation feedback, and discuss its possible influence on the formation of black widow MSPs.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. An Update on the Timing of the Millisecond Pulsar in a Triple System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ransom, Scott M.; Archibald, Anne; Stairs, Ingrid H.; Hessels, Jason; Lorimer, Duncan; Lynch, Ryan S.

    2017-01-01

    The millisecond pulsar J0337+1715, in a hierarchical triple system with two white dwarfs, is providing continued high-precision timing and a unique new test of general relativity. Our relativistic timing model of the system, based on accurate three-body gravitational integrations, has provided high-precision orbital inclinations and masses of all three stars, and we have begun to measure secular changes in the inner orbit. Limits on predicted systematic variations of the shape of the inner orbit based on our fantastic timing data, primarily now from Arecibo and the GBT, are providing the best-ever test of the Strong Equivalence Principle (SEP). This test will have important implications for basic physics since general relativity is the only known workable theory of gravity where the SEP must hold.

  17. 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.

  18. An evolutionary channel towards the accreting millisecond pulsar SAX J1808.4-3658

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Wen-Cong

    2017-02-01

    Recent timing analysis reveals that the orbital period of the first-discovered accreting millisecond pulsar SAX J1808.4-3658 is increasing at a rate dot{P}_orb=(3.89± 0.15)× 10^{-12} s s^{-1}, which is at least one order of magnitude higher than the value arising from the conservative mass transfer. An ejection of mass-loss rate of 10- 9 M⊙ yr- 1 from the donor star at the inner Lagrangian point during the quiescence state could interpret the observed orbital-period derivative. However, it is unknown whether this source can offer such a high mass-loss rate. In this work, we attempt to investigate an evolutionary channel towards SAX J1808.4-3658. Once the accretion disc becomes thermally and viscously unstable, the spin-down luminosity of the millisecond pulsar and the X-ray luminosity during outbursts are assumed to evaporate the donor star, and the resulting winds carry away the specific orbital angular momentum at the inner Lagrangian point. Our scenario could yield the observed orbital period, the orbital-period derivative, and the peak X-ray luminosity during outbursts. Low-mass X-ray binaries with a 1.0 M⊙ donor star, and an orbital period in the range of 0.8-1.5 d, may be the progenitor of SAX J1808.4-3658. Our numerical calculations propose that the current donor-star mass is 0.044 M⊙, which is approximately in agreement with the minimum mass of the donor star. In addition, our scenario can also account for the formation of black widows or the diamond planets like PSR J1719-1438.

  19. Discovery of a new accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar in the globular cluster NGC 2808

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanna, A.; Papitto, A.; Burderi, L.; Bozzo, E.; Riggio, A.; Di Salvo, T.; Ferrigno, C.; Rea, N.; Iaria, R.

    2017-01-01

    We report on the discovery of coherent pulsations at a period of 2.9 ms from the X-ray transient MAXI J0911-655 in the globular cluster NGC 2808. We observed X-ray pulsations at a frequency of 339.97 Hz in three different observations of the source performed with XMM-Newton and NuSTAR during the source outburst. This newly discovered accreting millisecond pulsar is part of an ultra-compact binary system characterised by an orbital period of 44.3 min and a projected semi-major axis of 17.6 lt-ms. Based on the mass function, we estimate a minimum companion mass of 0.024 M⊙, which assumes a neutron star mass of 1.4 M⊙ and a maximum inclination angle of 75° (derived from the lack of eclipses and dips in the light-curve of the source). We find that the Roche-lobe of the companion star could either be filled by a hot (5 × 106 K) pure helium white dwarf with a 0.028 M⊙ mass (implying i ≃ 58°) or an old (>5 Gyr) brown dwarf with metallicity abundances between solar/sub-solar and mass ranging in the interval 0.065 to 0.085 (16 < i < 21). During the outburst, the broad-band energy spectra are well described by a superposition of a weak black-body component (kT 0.5 keV) and a hard cut-off power-law with photon index Γ 1.7 and cut-off at a temperature kTe 130 keV. Up until the latest Swift-XRT observation performed on 19th July, 2016, the source had been observed in outburst for almost 150 days, which makes MAXI J0911-655 the second accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar with outburst duration longer than 100 days.

  20. EVIDENCE OF FAST MAGNETIC FIELD EVOLUTION IN AN ACCRETING MILLISECOND PULSAR

    SciTech Connect

    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 {approx}180 Degree-Sign 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.

  1. SIX NEW MILLISECOND PULSARS FROM ARECIBO SEARCHES OF FERMI GAMMA-RAY SOURCES

    SciTech Connect

    Cromartie, H. T.; Camilo, F.; Kerr, M.; Deneva, J. S.; Ray, P. S.; Wood, K. S.; Ransom, S. M.; Ferrara, E. C.; Michelson, P. F.

    2016-03-01

    We have discovered six radio millisecond pulsars (MSPs) in a search with the Arecibo telescope of 34 unidentified gamma-ray sources from the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) four year point source catalog. Among the 34 sources, we also detected two MSPs previously discovered elsewhere. Each source was observed at a center frequency of 327 MHz, typically at three epochs with individual integration times of 15 minutes. The new MSP spin periods range from 1.99 to 4.66 ms. Five of the six pulsars are in interacting compact binaries (period ≤ 8.1 hr), while the sixth is a more typical neutron star-white dwarf binary with an 83 day orbital period. This is a higher proportion of interacting binaries than for equivalent Fermi-LAT searches elsewhere. The reason is that Arecibo's large gain afforded us the opportunity to limit integration times to 15 minutes, which significantly increased our sensitivity to these highly accelerated systems. Seventeen of the remaining 26 gamma-ray sources are still categorized as strong MSP candidates, and will be re-searched.

  2. OPTICAL IDENTIFICATION OF He WHITE DWARFS ORBITING FOUR MILLISECOND PULSARS IN THE GLOBULAR CLUSTER 47 TUCANAE

    SciTech Connect

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

    2015-10-10

    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{sub ⊙} and 0.20 M{sub ⊙}. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. MODELING MULTI-WAVELENGTH PULSE PROFILES OF THE MILLISECOND PULSAR PSR B1821–24

    SciTech Connect

    Du, Yuanjie; Shuai, Ping; Bei, Xiaomin; Chen, Shaolong; Fu, Linzhong; Huang, Liangwei; Lin, Qingqing; Meng, Jing; Wu, Yaojun; Zhang, Hengbin; Zhang, Qian; Zhang, Xinyuan; Qiao, Guojun

    2015-03-10

    PSR B1821–24 is a solitary millisecond pulsar that radiates multi-wavelength pulsed photons. It has complex radio, X-ray, and γ-ray pulse profiles with distinct peak phase separations that challenge the traditional caustic emission models. Using the single-pole annular gap model with a suitable magnetic inclination angle (α = 40°) and viewing angle (ζ = 75°), we managed to reproduce its pulse profiles of three wavebands. It is found that the middle radio peak originated from the core gap region at high altitudes, and the other two radio peaks originated from the annular gap region at relatively low altitudes. Two peaks of both X-ray and γ-ray wavebands basically originated from the annular gap region, while the γ-ray emission generated from the core gap region contributes somewhat to the first γ-ray peak. Precisely reproducing the multi-wavelength pulse profiles of PSR B1821–24 enables us to understand emission regions of distinct wavebands and justify pulsar emission models.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. Einstein@Home DISCOVERY OF A PALFA MILLISECOND PULSAR IN AN ECCENTRIC BINARY ORBIT

    SciTech Connect

    Knispel, B.; Allen, B.; Lyne, A. G.; Stappers, B. W.; Freire, P. C. C.; Lazarus, P.; Aulbert, C.; Bock, O.; Eggenstein, H.-B.; Fehrmann, H.; Bogdanov, S.; Camilo, F.; Brazier, A.; Chatterjee, S.; Cordes, J. M.; Cardoso, F.; Crawford, F.; Deneva, J. S.; Ferdman, R.; Hessels, J. W. T.; and others

    2015-06-10

    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{sub ⊙} 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.

  9. Multiwavelength observations of the transitional millisecond pulsar binary XSS J12270-4859

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Martino, D.; Papitto, A.; Belloni, T.; Burgay, M.; De Ona Wilhelmi, E.; Li, J.; Pellizzoni, A.; Possenti, A.; Rea, N.; Torres, D. F.

    2015-12-01

    We present an analysis of X-ray, ultraviolet and optical/near-IR photometric data of the transitional millisecond pulsar binary XSS J12270-4859, obtained at different epochs after the transition to a rotation-powered radio pulsar state. The observations, while confirming the large-amplitude orbital modulation found in previous studies after the state change, also reveal an energy dependence of the amplitudes as well as variations on time-scale of months. The amplitude variations are anticorrelated in the X-ray and the UV/optical bands. The average X-ray spectrum is described by a power law with Γ index of 1.07(8) without requiring an additional thermal component. The power-law index Γ varies from ˜1.2 to ˜1.0 between superior and inferior conjunction of the neutron star. We interpret the observed X-ray behaviour in terms of synchrotron radiation emitted in an extended intrabinary shock, located between the pulsar and the donor star, which is eclipsed due to the companion orbital motion. The G5-type donor dominates the UV/optical and near-IR emission and is similarly found to be heated up to ˜6500 K as in the disc state. The analysis of optical light curves gives a binary inclination 46° ≲ i ≲ 65° and a mass ratio 0.11 ≲ q ≲ 0.26. The donor mass is found to be 0.15 ≲ M2 ≲ 0.36 M⊙ for a neutron star mass of 1.4 M⊙. The variations in the amplitude of the orbital modulation are interpreted in terms of small changes in the mass-flow rate from the donor star. The spectral energy distribution from radio to gamma-rays is composed by multiple contributions that are different from those observed during the accretion-powered state.

  10. A Propeller Model for the Sub-luminous State of the Transitional Millisecond Pulsar PSR J1023+0038

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Papitto, A.; Torres, D. F.

    2015-07-01

    The discovery of millisecond pulsars switching between states powered either by the rotation of their magnetic field or by the accretion of matter has recently proved the tight link shared by millisecond radio pulsars and neutron stars in low-mass X-ray binaries. Transitional millisecond pulsars also show an enigmatic intermediate state in which the neutron star is surrounded by an accretion disk and emits coherent X-ray pulsations, but is sub-luminous in X-rays with respect to accreting neutron stars, and is brighter in gamma-rays than millisecond pulsars in the rotation-powered state. Here, we model the X-ray and gamma-ray emission observed from PSR J1023+0038 in such a state based on the assumptions that most of the disk in-flow is propelled away by the rapidly rotating neutron star magnetosphere, and that electrons can be accelerated to energies of a few GeV at the turbulent disk-magnetosphere boundary. We show that the synchrotron and self-synchrotron Compton emission coming from such a region, together with the hard disk emission typical of low states of accreting compact objects, is able to explain the radiation observed in the X-ray and gamma-ray bands. The average emission observed from PSR J1023+0038 is modeled by a disk in-flow with a rate of 1-3 × 10-11 M⊙ yr-1, truncated at a radius ranging between 30 and 45 km, compatible with the hypothesis of a propelling magnetosphere. We compare the results we obtained with models that assume that a rotation-powered pulsar is turned on, showing how the spin-down power released in similar scenarios is hardly able to account for the magnitude of the observed emission.

  11. A PROPELLER MODEL FOR THE SUB-LUMINOUS STATE OF THE TRANSITIONAL MILLISECOND PULSAR PSR J1023+0038

    SciTech Connect

    Papitto, A.; Torres, D. F.

    2015-07-01

    The discovery of millisecond pulsars switching between states powered either by the rotation of their magnetic field or by the accretion of matter has recently proved the tight link shared by millisecond radio pulsars and neutron stars in low-mass X-ray binaries. Transitional millisecond pulsars also show an enigmatic intermediate state in which the neutron star is surrounded by an accretion disk and emits coherent X-ray pulsations, but is sub-luminous in X-rays with respect to accreting neutron stars, and is brighter in gamma-rays than millisecond pulsars in the rotation-powered state. Here, we model the X-ray and gamma-ray emission observed from PSR J1023+0038 in such a state based on the assumptions that most of the disk in-flow is propelled away by the rapidly rotating neutron star magnetosphere, and that electrons can be accelerated to energies of a few GeV at the turbulent disk–magnetosphere boundary. We show that the synchrotron and self-synchrotron Compton emission coming from such a region, together with the hard disk emission typical of low states of accreting compact objects, is able to explain the radiation observed in the X-ray and gamma-ray bands. The average emission observed from PSR J1023+0038 is modeled by a disk in-flow with a rate of 1–3 × 10{sup −11} M{sub ⊙} yr{sup −1}, truncated at a radius ranging between 30 and 45 km, compatible with the hypothesis of a propelling magnetosphere. We compare the results we obtained with models that assume that a rotation-powered pulsar is turned on, showing how the spin-down power released in similar scenarios is hardly able to account for the magnitude of the observed emission.

  12. The Reawakening of the Sleeping X-ray Pulsar XTE J1946+274

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mueller, Sebastian; Mueller, Sebastian; Kuechnel, Matthias; Fuerst, Felix; Kreykenbohm, Ingo; Sagredo, Macarena; Obst, Maria; Wilms, Joern; Caballero, Isabel; Potttschmidt, Katja; Ferrigno, Carlo; Rothschild, Richard E.

    2012-01-01

    We report on a series of outbursts of the high mass X-ray binary XTE 11946+274 in 2010/2011 as observed with INTEGRAL, RXTE, and Swift. We discuss possible mechanisms resulting in the extraordinary outburst behavior of this source. The X-ray spectra can be described by standard phenomenological models, enhanced by an absorption feature of unknown origin at about 10 keV and a narrow iron K alpha fluorescence line at 6.4keV, which are variable in flux and pulse phase. We find possible evidence for the presence of a cyclotron resonance scattering feature at about 25 keV at the 93% level. The presence of a strong cyclotron line at 35 keV seen in data from the source's 1998 outburst and confirmed by a reanalysis of these data can be excluded. This result indicates that the cyclotron line feature in XTE 11946+274 is variable between individual outbursts.

  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. 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.

  15. Timing Results for the Binary Millisecond Pulsar J1640+2224 Obtained on the RT-64 Radio Telescope in Kalyazin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Potapov, V. A.; Ilyasov, Yu. P.; Oreshko, V. V.; Rodin, A. E.

    2003-04-01

    We present the timing results for the binary millisecond pulsar J1640+2224 obtained with the RT-64 radio telescope (TNA-1500, Special Design Bureau, Moscow Power Engineering Institute) at the Kalyazin Observatory (Astrospace Center of the Lebedev Institute of Physics) in 1997-2002. We obtained Keplerian and post-Keplerian parameters of the binary system, which allowed us to estimate an upper limit for the energy density of the stochastic gravitational-wave background radiation at very low frequencies.

  16. An Eccentric Binary Millisecond Pulsar with a Helium White Dwarf Companion in the Galactic field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Antoniadis, John; Kaplan, David L.; Stovall, Kevin; Freire, Paulo C. C.; Deneva, Julia S.; Koester, Detlev; Jenet, Fredrick; Martinez, Jose G.

    2016-10-01

    Low-mass white dwarfs (LMWDs) are believed to be exclusive products of binary evolution, as the universe is not old enough to produce them from single stars. Because of the strong tidal forces operating during the binary interaction phase, the remnant systems observed today are expected to have negligible eccentricities. Here, we report on the first unambiguous identification of an LMWD in an eccentric (e = 0.13) orbit around the millisecond pulsar PSR J2234+0511, which directly contradicts this picture. We use our spectra and radio-timing solution (derived elsewhere) to infer the WD temperature ({T}{{eff}}=8600+/- 190 K), and peculiar systemic velocity relative to the local standard of rest (≃ 31 km s-1). We also place model-independent constraints on the WD radius ({R}{{WD}}={0.024}-0.002+0.004 {R}⊙ ) and surface gravity ({log} g={7.11}-0.16+0.08 dex). The WD and kinematic properties are consistent with the expectations for low-mass X-ray binary evolution and disfavor a dynamic three-body formation channel. In the case of the high eccentricity being the result of a spontaneous phase transition, we infer a mass of ˜1.60 M ⊙ for the pulsar progenitor, which is too low for the quark-nova mechanism proposed by Jiang et al., and too high for the scenario of Freire & Tauris, in which a WD collapses into a neutron star via a rotationally delayed accretion-induced collapse. We find that eccentricity pumping via interaction with a circumbinary disk is consistent with our inferred parameters. Finally, we report tentative evidence for pulsations that, if confirmed, would transform the star into an unprecedented laboratory for WD physics.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. A millisecond pulsar candidate in a 21-h orbit: 3FGL J0212.1+5320

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Linares, Manuel; Miles-Páez, Paulo; Rodríguez-Gil, Pablo; Shahbaz, Tariq; Casares, Jorge; Fariña, Cecilia; Karjalainen, Raine

    2017-03-01

    We present the discovery of a variable optical counterpart to the unidentified gamma-ray source 3FGL J0212.1+5320 and argue that this is a new compact binary millisecond pulsar (MSP) candidate. We show 3FGL J0212.1+5320 hosts a semidetached binary with a 0.869 55 ± 0.000 15 d orbital period and an F6-type companion star at an estimated distance of D = 1.1 ± 0.2 kpc, with a radial velocity curve semi-amplitude K2 = 214.1 ± 5.0 km s-1 and a projected rotational velocity of V sin (i) = 73.2 ± 1.6 km s-1. We find a hard X-ray source at the same location with a 0.5-10 keV luminosity LX = 2.6 × 1032 (D/1.1 kpc)2 erg s-1, which strengthens the MSP identification. Our results imply a mass ratio q = M2/M1 = 0.26^{+0.02}_{-0.03} if the companion star fills its Roche lobe, and q ≳ 0.26 in any case. This classifies 3FGL J0212.1+5320 as a 'redback' binary MSP; if its MSP nature is confirmed, this will be the brightest compact binary MSP in the optical band (r″ ≃ 14.3 mag) and will have the longest orbital period among Galactic field systems (nearly 21 h). Based on the light curve peak-to-peak amplitude (Δr = 0.19 mag), we further suggest that the orbital inclination is high and the putative pulsar mass is close to canonical (M1 ≃ 1.3-1.6 M⊙). Finally, we discuss the lack of heating signatures and asymmetric optical light curves in the context of other redback MSPs.

  1. SCINTILLATION ARCS IN LOW-FREQUENCY OBSERVATIONS OF THE TIMING-ARRAY MILLISECOND PULSAR PSR J0437–4715

    SciTech Connect

    Bhat, N. D. R.; Ord, S. M.; Tremblay, S. E.; McSweeney, S. J.; Tingay, S. J.

    2016-02-10

    Low-frequency observations of pulsars provide a powerful means for probing the microstructure in the turbulent interstellar medium (ISM). Here we report on high-resolution dynamic spectral analysis of our observations of the timing-array millisecond pulsar PSR J0437–4715 with the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA), enabled by our recently commissioned tied-array beam processing pipeline for voltage data recorded from the high time resolution mode of the MWA. A secondary spectral analysis reveals faint parabolic arcs akin to those seen in high-frequency observations of pulsars with the Green Bank and Arecibo telescopes. Data from Parkes observations at a higher frequency of 732 MHz reveal a similar parabolic feature with a curvature that scales approximately as the square of the observing wavelength (λ{sup 2}) to the MWA's frequency of 192 MHz. Our analysis suggests that scattering toward PSR J0437–4715 predominantly arises from a compact region about 115 pc from the Earth, which matches well with the expected location of the edge of the Local Bubble that envelopes the local Solar neighborhood. As well as demonstrating new and improved pulsar science capabilities of the MWA, our analysis underscores the potential of low-frequency pulsar observations for gaining valuable insights into the local ISM and for characterizing the ISM toward timing-array pulsars.

  2. Estimating the GeV Emission of Millisecond Pulsars in Dwarf Spheroidal Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winter, Miles; Zaharijas, Gabrijela; Bechtol, Keith; Vandenbroucke, Justin

    2017-01-01

    Dwarf spheroidal satellite galaxies (dSphs) are among the most dark matter dominated systems in the cosmos, which, complemented by a favorable proximity to the Milky Way, makes them extremely important targets in the ongoing search for indirect dark matter detection via gamma rays. While the conventional astrophysical background in dSphs has long been assumed to be negligible, Fermi LAT measurements of a population of luminous gamma-ray emitting galactic millisecond pulsars (MSPs) potentially challenge this assumption. With that in mind, we present an estimate of the conventional astrophysical emission intrinsic to 30 dSphs of the Milky Way, focusing on MSPs, and evaluate the potential for confusion with dark matter annihilation signatures at GeV energies. We predict that MSPs in the highest stellar mass dSphs, Fornax and Sculptor, produce a gamma-ray flux that is approximately a factor of 10 below the current LAT sensitivity. However, for ultra-faint dSphs, typically the most dark matter dominated, we estimate the MSP emission to be several orders of magnitude below both the LAT sensitivity and the flux expected from dark matter annihilation, suggesting that these targets will remain safe for indirect dark matter searches in the foreseeable future.

  3. IGR J17062–6143 Is an Accreting Millisecond X-Ray Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strohmayer, Tod; Keek, Laurens

    2017-02-01

    We present the discovery of 163.65 Hz X-ray pulsations from IGR J17062‑6143 in the only observation obtained from the source with the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer. This detection makes IGR J17062‑6143 the lowest-frequency accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar presently known. The pulsations are detected in the 2–12 keV band with an overall significance of 4.3σ and an observed pulsed amplitude of 5.54% ± 0.67% (in this band). Both dynamic power spectral and coherent phase timing analysis indicate that the pulsation frequency is decreasing during the ≈1.2 ks observation in a manner consistent with orbital motion of the neutron star. Because the observation interval is short, we cannot precisely measure the orbital period; however, periods shorter than 17 minutes are excluded at 90% confidence. For the range of acceptable circular orbits the inferred binary mass function substantially overlaps the observed range for the AMXP population as a whole.

  4. IGR J170626143 is an Accreting Millisecond X-Ray Pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strohmayer, Tod E.; Keek, Laurens

    2017-01-01

    We present the discovery of 163.65 Hz X-ray pulsations from IGR J17062-6143 in the only observation obtained from the source with the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer. This detection makes IGR J17062-6143 the lowest frequency accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar presently known. The pulsations are detected in the 2-12 keV band with an overall significance of 4.3sigma and an observed pulsed amplitude of 5.54% +/-0.67% (in this band). Both dynamic power spectral and coherent phase timing analysis indicate that the pulsation frequency is decreasing during the approx. =1.2 ks observation in a manner consistent with orbital motion of the neutron star. Because the observation interval is short, we cannot precisely measure the orbital period; however, periods shorter than 17 minutes are excluded at 90% confidence. For the range of acceptable circular orbits the inferred binary mass function substantially overlaps the observed range for the AMXP population as a whole.

  5. The Stochastic X-Ray Variability of the Accreting Millisecond Pulsar MAXI J0911-655

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bult, Peter

    2017-01-01

    In this work, I report on the stochastic X-ray variability of the 340 hertz accreting millisecond pulsar MAXI J0911-655. Analyzing pointed observations of the XMM-Newton and NuSTAR observatories, I find that the source shows broad band-limited stochastic variability in the 0.01-10 hertz range with a total fractional variability of approximately 24 percent root mean square timing residuals in the 0.4 to 3 kiloelectronvolt energy band that increases to approximately 40 percent root mean square timing residuals in the 3 to 10 kiloelectronvolt band. Additionally, a pair of harmonically related quasi-periodic oscillations (QPOs) are discovered. The fundamental frequency of this harmonic pair is observed between frequencies of 62 and 146 megahertz. Like the band-limited noise, the amplitudes of the QPOs show a steep increase as a function of energy; this suggests that they share a similar origin, likely the inner accretion flow. Based on their energy dependence and frequency relation with respect to the noise terms, the QPOs are identified as low-frequency oscillations and discussed in terms of the Lense-Thirring precession model.

  6. The Stochastic X-Ray Variability of the Accreting Millisecond Pulsar MAXI J0911–655

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bult, Peter

    2017-03-01

    In this work, I report on the stochastic X-ray variability of the 340 Hz accreting millisecond pulsar MAXI J0911–655. Analyzing pointed observations of the XMM-Newton and NuSTAR observatories, I find that the source shows broad band-limited stochastic variability in the 0.01{--}10 {Hz} range with a total fractional variability of ∼ 24 % rms in the 0.4{--}3 {keV} energy band that increases to ∼ 40 % rms in the 3–10 keV band. Additionally, a pair of harmonically related quasi-periodic oscillations (QPOs) are discovered. The fundamental frequency of this harmonic pair is observed between frequencies of 62 and 146 mHz. Like the band-limited noise, the amplitudes of the QPOs show a steep increase as a function of energy; this suggests that they share a similar origin, likely the inner accretion flow. Based on their energy dependence and frequency relation with respect to the noise terms, the QPOs are identified as low-frequency oscillations and discussed in terms of the Lense–Thirring precession model.

  7. 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.

  8. A STRANGE STAR SCENARIO FOR THE FORMATION OF ECCENTRIC MILLISECOND PULSAR/HELIUM WHITE DWARF BINARIES

    SciTech Connect

    Jiang, Long; Li, Xiang-Dong; Dey, Jishnu; Dey, Mira

    2015-07-01

    According to the recycling scenario, millisecond pulsars (MSPs) have evolved from low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs). Their orbits are expected to be circular due to tidal interactions during binary evolution, as observed in most binary MSPs. There are some peculiar systems that do not fit this picture. Three recent examples are the PSRs J2234+06, J1946+3417, and J1950+2414, all of which are MSPs in eccentric orbits but with mass functions compatible with expected He white dwarf (WD) companions. It has been suggested these MSPs may have formed from delayed accretion-induced collapse of massive WDs, or the eccentricity may be induced by dynamical interaction between the binary and a circumbinary disk. Assuming that the core density of accreting neutron stars (NSs) in LMXBs may reach the density of quark deconfinement, which can lead to phase transition from NSs to strange quark stars, we show that the resultant MSPs are likely to have an eccentric orbit, due to the sudden loss of the gravitational mass of the NS during the transition. The eccentricities can be reproduced with a reasonable estimate of the mass loss. This scenario might also account for the formation of the youngest known X-ray binary Cir X–1, which also possesses a low-field compact star in an eccentric orbit.

  9. 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.

  10. The Identification of the Optical Companion to the Binary Millisecond Pulsar J0610-2100 in the Galactic Field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pallanca, C.; Mignani, R. P.; Dalessandro, E.; Ferraro, F. R.; Lanzoni, B.; Possenti, A.; Burgay, M.; Sabbi, E.

    2012-08-01

    We have used deep V and R images acquired at the ESO Very Large Telescope to identify the optical companion to the binary PSR J0610-2100, one of the black-widow millisecond pulsars recently detected by the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope in the Galactic plane. We found a faint star (V ~ 26.7) nearly coincident (δr ~ 0farcs28) with the pulsar nominal position. This star is visible only in half of the available images, while it disappears in the deepest ones (those acquired under the best-seeing conditions), thus indicating that it is variable. Although our observations do not sample the entire orbital period (P = 0.28 days) of the pulsar, we found that the optical modulation of the variable star nicely correlates with the pulsar orbital period and describes a well-defined peak (R ~ 25.6) at Φ = 0.75, suggesting a modulation due to the pulsar heating. We tentatively conclude that the companion to PSR J0610-2100 is a heavily ablated very low mass star (≈0.02 M ⊙) that completely filled its Roche lobe.

  11. 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.

  12. Implications of rapid rotation for pulse profile models of millisecond-period x-ray pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cadeau, Coire

    2007-08-01

    The rapid rotation of recycled neutron stars in accretion-powered millisecond- period X-ray pulsars has important consequences for models of their pulsed emission, and by extension, the analysis of observations of these objects. We begin by considering the problem of calculating the time-varying bolometric flux arising due to emission from a bright spot on the surface of a rapidly rotating neutron star, with rotational period on the order of a millisecond. We restrict to the case of isotropic emission from an infinitesimal emission zone, but carry out the calculations with sufficient generality to incorporate a precisely solved spacetime metric and stellar structure. The geodesic equation is integrated numerically. Using the computer code developed for this work, we investigate the effect that commonly-used simplifying approximations have on the shape of the pulse profile compared to the full calculation. In particular, we consider the effect of neglecting the phase-dependent travel time of photons, approximating the exterior metric as either Schwarzschild or Kerr, and neglecting the rotation- induced oblateness of the neutron star. We also consider the consequences that result when approximate pulse profiles are used to obtain neutron star parameters such as mass, radius, emission inclination, and observer inclination via least squares fitting. Specifically, we look at fitting light curves calculated using the Schwarzschild metric and a spherical star to a light curve calculated using a precisely-solved metric and stellar structure. We are able to conclude that, in an idealised case where there is no random noise component and all light curves are for bolometric fluxes from isotropic emission, neglecting photon times-of-flight or stellar oblateness in model light curves used for fitting can introduce errors at the level of several tens of percent on the determination of mass and radius individually. However, these errors will often offset each other such that the

  13. Using Fermi Large Area Telescope Observations to Constrain the Emission and Field Geometries of Young Gamma-ray Pulsars and to Guide Millisecond Pulsar Searches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeCesar, Megan Elizabeth

    This thesis has two parts, the first focusing on analysis and modeling of high-energy pulsar emission and the second on pulsar observations. In part 1, I constrain the magnetospheric emission geometry (magnetic inclination alpha, emission width w, maximum emission radius r, and observer colatitude zeta) by modeling >100 MeV light curves of four bright gamma-ray pulsars with geometrical representations of the slot gap and outer gap emission models. I also model the >100 MeV phase resolved spectra, measuring the power law cutoff energy Ec with phase. Assuming curvature radiation reaction (CRR) is the dominant emission process, I use Ec to compute the accelerating electric field strength, E||. The original contributions of this thesis to astrophysical research are the use of the force-free magnetic field solution in light curve modeling, the inclusion of an offset polar cap in the slot gap geometry, and the calculation of E|| from observationally determined quantities (i.e., Ec). The simulations reproduce observed light curve features and accurately match multi-wavelength zeta measurements, but the specific combination of best-fit emission and field geometry varies between pulsars. Perhaps pulsar magnetospheres contain some combination of slot gap and outer gap geometries, whose contributions to the light curve depend on viewing angle. The requirement that, locally, E||/B < 1 rules out the vacuum field as a valid approximation to the true pulsar field under the CRR assumption. The E|| values imply that the youngest, most energetic pulsar has a near-force-free field, and that CRR and/or narrow acceleration gaps may not be applicable to older pulsars. In part 2, I present discoveries of two radio millisecond pulsars (MSPs) from LAT-guided pulsar searches. I timed the first MSP, resulting in the detection of gamma-ray pulsations. The second MSP is in a globular cluster. My initial timing efforts show that it is in a highly eccentric ( e ~ 0.95) binary orbit with a

  14. Chandra X-Ray Observations of 19 Millisecond Pulsars in the Globular Cluster 47 Tucanae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanov, Slavko; Grindlay, Jonathan E.; Heinke, Craig O.; Camilo, Fernando; Freire, Paulo C. C.; Becker, Werner

    2006-08-01

    We present spectral and long-timescale variability analyses of Chandra X-Ray Observatory ACIS-S observations of the 19 millisecond pulsars (MSPs) with precisely known positions in the globular cluster 47 Tucanae. The X-ray emission of the majority of these MSPs is well described by a thermal (blackbody or neutron star hydrogen atmosphere) spectrum with a temperature Teff~(1-3)×106 K, emission radius Reff~0.1-3 km, and luminosity LX~1030-1031 ergs s-1. For several MSPs, there are indications that a second thermal component is required, similar to what is seen in some nearby field MSPs. The observed radiation most likely originates from the heated magnetic polar caps of the MSPs. The small apparent scatter in LX is consistent with thermal emission from the polar caps of a global dipole field, although the small emission areas may imply either a more complex small-scale magnetic field configuration near the neutron star surface or nonuniform polar cap heating. The radio eclipsing binary MSPs 47 Tuc J, O, and W show a significant nonthermal (power-law) component, with spectral photon index Γ~1-1.5, which most likely originates in an intrabinary shock formed due to interaction between the relativistic pulsar wind and matter from the stellar companion. We reexamine the X-ray-spin-down luminosity relation (LX-E˙ relation) and find that for the MSPs with thermal spectra LX~E˙β, where β~0.2+/-1.1. Due to the large uncertainties in both parameters, the result is consistent with both the linear LX-E˙ relation and the flatter LX~E˙0.5 predicted by polar cap heating models. In terms of X-ray properties, we find no clear systematic differences between MSPs in globular clusters and in the field of the Galaxy. We discuss the implications of these results on the present understanding of the X-ray emission properties of MSPs.

  15. 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.

  16. Estimating the GeV Emission of Millisecond Pulsars in Dwarf Spheroidal Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winter, Miles; Zaharijas, Gabrijela; Bechtol, Keith; Vandenbroucke, Justin

    2016-11-01

    We estimate the conventional astrophysical emission from dwarf spheroidal satellite galaxies (dSphs) of the Milky Way (MW), focusing on millisecond pulsars (MSPs), and evaluate the potential for confusion with dark matter (DM) annihilation signatures at GeV energies. In low-density stellar environments, such as dSphs, the abundance of MSPs is expected to be proportional to stellar mass. Accordingly, we construct the γ-ray luminosity function (LF) of MSPs in the MW disk, where >90 individual MSPs have been detected with the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT), and scale this LF to the stellar masses of 30 dSphs to estimate the cumulative emission from their MSP populations. We predict that MSPs within the highest stellar mass dSphs, Fornax and Sculptor, produce a γ-ray flux >500 MeV of ˜10-11 ph cm-2 s-1, which is a factor ˜10 below the current LAT sensitivity at high Galactic latitudes. The MSP emission in ultra-faint dSphs, including targets with the largest J-factors, is typically several orders of magnitude lower, suggesting that these targets will remain clean targets for indirect DM searches in the foreseeable future. For a DM particle of mass 25 GeV annihilating to b quarks at the thermal relic cross section (consistent with DM interpretations of the Galactic Center excess), we find that the expected γ-ray emission due to DM exceeds that of MSPs in all of the target dSphs. Using the same MW MSP population model, we also estimate the Galactic foreground MSP coincidence probability along the same sightlines to the dSphs.

  17. 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.

  18. A LIKELY MILLISECOND PULSAR BINARY COUNTERPART FOR FERMI SOURCE 2FGL J2039.6–5620

    SciTech Connect

    Romani, Roger W.

    2015-10-20

    We have identified an optical/X-ray binary with an orbital period of P{sub b} = 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. PULSE INTENSITY MODULATION AND THE TIMING STABILITY OF MILLISECOND PULSARS: A CASE STUDY OF PSR J1713+0747

    SciTech Connect

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

    2012-12-10

    Most millisecond pulsars, like essentially all other radio pulsars, show timing errors well in excess of what is expected from additive radiometer noise alone. We show that changes in amplitude, shape, and pulse phase for the millisecond pulsar J1713+0747 cause this excess error. These changes appear to be uncorrelated from one pulse period to the next. The resulting time of arrival (TOA) variations are correlated across a wide frequency range and is observed with different backend processors on different days, confirming that they are intrinsic in origin and not an instrumental effect or caused by strongly frequency-dependent interstellar scattering. Centroids of single pulses show an rms phase variation Almost-Equal-To 40 {mu}s, which dominates the timing error and is the same phase jitter phenomenon long known in slower spinning, canonical pulsars. We show that the amplitude modulations of single pulses are modestly correlated with their arrival time fluctuations. We also demonstrate that single-pulse variations are completely consistent with arrival time variations of pulse profiles obtained by integrating N pulses such that the arrival-time error decreases proportional to 1/{radical}N. We investigate methods for correcting TOAs for these pulse-shape changes, including multi-component TOA fitting and principal component analysis. These techniques are not found to improve the timing precision of the observations. We conclude that when pulse-shape changes dominate timing errors, the timing precision of PSR J1713+0747 can be only improved by averaging over a larger number of pulses.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. Millisecond pulsars and neutron stars in globular clusters: 47Tuc vs. NGC6397

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grindlay, J.; Heinke, C.; Edmonds, P.; Camilo, F.

    With the Chandra X-ray Observatory, we have discovered that millisecond pulsars (MSPs) in the globular cluster 47 Tuc are detected as soft x-ray sources with lumi- nosities in a surprisingly narrow range (Lx 1-4 1030 erg s-1 ). Of the 16 MSPs with precise positions derived from radio timing, 9 are well detected and 6 of the remain- ing 7 (two are unresolved) are likely also detected. The MSPs are predominantly soft and consistent with thermal emission with temperatures kT 0.2 keV from a small emission area of radius R 0.2km. This presumed polar cap emission appears to obey a flatter correlation, with Lx E 0.5) , than that found for MSPs in the field and the much more luminous MSP measured (pre-Chandra) in the globular cluster M28. The single MSP in the core-collapsed globular NGC 6397 is also consistent with the flatter Lx - E relation found for the 47Tuc population although the spectrum of this eclipsing system is significantly harder. A newly identified (by Edmonds et al) x-ray (Chandra) and optical (HST) counterpart of a second eclipsing system, 47Tuc-W, matched by binary period but without a precise (timing) position, is also dominated by harder emission. We compare the thermal (soft) sources with polar cap heating models and the harder spectrum (eclipsing) MSPs with MSP wind models. If the MSP winds carry energy (available for shock heating gas driven off the secondary star) proportional to the polar cap heating rate, the apparent continuity of the Lx - E relation between the soft and hard systems might be understood. The x-ray and optical properties of the hard eclipsing systems (e.g. 47Tuc-W) resemble accreting white dwarfs (cataclysmic variables) found in significant numbers in 47Tuc and especially NGC 6397. We re- consider the nature and statistics of the MSP vs. CV populations these two globulars (and others studied with Chandra/HST), together with the quiescent low mass x-ray binaries (qLMXBs) as the canonical MSP progenitors, for a new look at the

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Probing strange stars and color superconductivity by r-mode instabilities in millisecond pulsars

    PubMed

    Madsen

    2000-07-03

    r-mode instabilities in rapidly rotating quark matter stars (strange stars) lead to specific signatures in the evolution of pulsars with periods below 2.5 msec, and may explain the apparent lack of very rapid pulsars. Existing data seem consistent with pulsars being strange stars with a normal quark matter phase surrounded by an insulating nuclear crust. In contrast, quark stars in a color-flavor-locked phase are ruled out. Two-flavor color superconductivity is marginally inconsistent with pulsar data.

  14. The End of Accretion: The X-Ray Binary/Millisecond Pulsar Transition Object PSR J1023+0038

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Archibald, Anne

    2015-04-01

    Millisecond radio pulsars (MSRPs), those spinning hundreds of times per second, have long been understood to be old pulsars that have been spun up by the accretion of matter from a companion in a low-mass X-ray binary (LMXB) phase. Yet the details of this transformation, particularly the end of the accretion process and the birth of a radio pulsar, remain mysterious. I will describe the discovery and detailed study of the first object known to transition between MSRP and LMXB states, PSR J1023+0038. By dint of a multiwavelength campaign of observations in the RMSP state, we are able to measure all the key system parameters and show the existence of an X-ray shock close to the pulsar-facing side of the companion. Since the discovery of PSR J1023+0038, two more objects (XSS J12270-4859 and M28I) have been found to make the same transition, and the study of these transitioning objects has become an active field of research. Most interestingly, PSR J1023+0038 has transitioned back into an LMXB state, with an active accretion disk and a puzzling increase in gamma-ray flux. Our detailed picture of the system allows us to test models of accretion against the phenomena we observe in PSR J1023+0038, and in fact these observations challenge current models: in spite of the low luminosity of the system (and low inferred accretion rate) some material is penetrating the centrifugal barrier and falling on the neutron-star surface. Key evidence for explaining this puzzling behaviour will come when PSR J1023+0038 returns to an MSRP state and we are able to compare pulsar timing models from after the LMXB state with those we obtained in this work.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. Hubble Space Telescope Detection of the Millisecond Pulsar J2124-3358 and its Far-ultraviolet Bow Shock Nebula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rangelov, B.; Pavlov, G. G.; Kargaltsev, O.; Reisenegger, A.; Guillot, S.; van Kerkwijk, M. H.; Reyes, C.

    2017-02-01

    We observed the nearby millisecond pulsar J2124–3358 with the Hubble Space Telescope in broad far-UV (FUV) and optical filters. The pulsar is detected in both bands with fluxes F(1250–2000 Å) = (2.5 ± 0.3) × 10‑16 erg s‑1 cm‑2 and F(3800–6000 Å) = (6.4 ± 0.4) × 10‑17 erg s‑1 cm‑2, which corresponds to luminosities of ≈5.8 × 1027 and 1.4 × 1027 erg s‑1, for d = 410 pc and E(B ‑ V) = 0.03. The optical-FUV spectrum can be described by a power-law model, {f}ν \\propto {ν }α , with slope α = 0.18–0.48 for a conservative range of color excess, E(B ‑ V) = 0.01–0.08. Since a spectral flux rising with frequency is unusual for pulsar magnetospheric emission in this frequency range, it is possible that the spectrum is predominantly magnetospheric (power law with α < 0) in the optical, while it is dominated by thermal emission from the neutron star surface in the FUV. For a neutron star radius of 12 km, the surface temperature would be between 0.5 × 105 and 2.1 × 105 K for α ranging from ‑1 to 0, E(B ‑ V) = 0.01–0.08, and d = 340–500 pc. In addition to the pulsar, the FUV images reveal extended emission that is spatially coincident with the known Hα bow shock, making PSR J2124–3358 the second pulsar (after PSR J0437‑4715) with a bow shock detected in the FUV.

  18. A Search for Gamma-ray Emission from Wind-Wind Interactions in Black Widow and Redback Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Tyrel J.; Ray, Paul S.; Camilo, Fernando M.; Roberts, Mallory S. E.; Fermi Large Area Telescope Collaboration

    2015-01-01

    Recent radio surveys, particularly those targeting unassociated Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) sources with pulsar-like characteristics, have greatly increased the number of known millisecond pulsars (MSPs) in binary systems with short orbital periods (less than a day) and low-mass companions (of order 0.2 Solar masses for redbacks and less than 0.08 Solar masses for black widows). These systems are likely laboratories for studying wind-wind interactions, and we here describe a search for unpulsed gamma-ray emission, possibly arising from these interactions, in the off-peak intervals. We will also search the off-peak and phase-averaged data for evidence of modulation at the orbital periods, correcting for exposure variations, and stack the off-peak intervals in the event that the emission is below threshold in any given source. Studying this emission will allow us to better understand the pulsar wind and how these systems evolve. Portions of this research performed at the US Naval Research Laboratory are sponsored by NASA DPR S-15633-Y and Fermi GO proposal 061103.

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. Observations and Modeling of the Companions of Short Period Binary Millisecond Pulsars: Evidence for High-mass Neutron Stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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 & 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 NS > 1.75 M ⊙ 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 c > 0.1 M ⊙), 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.

  2. Millisecond Pulsars in the Galactic Bulge? An Extended Discussion on the Wavelet Analysis of the Fermi-LAT data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bartels, Richard; Weniger, Christoph

    2017-01-01

    A clear excess in the Fermi-LAT data is present at energies around a few GeV. The spectrum of this so-called 'GeV excess' is remarkably similar to the expected annihilation signal of WIMP dark matter. However, a large bulge population of millisecond pulsars living below the Fermi-LAT detection threshold could also explain the excess spectrum. In a recent work we optimized the search for sub-threshold sources, by applying a wavelet transform to the Fermi-LAT gamma-ray data. In the Inner-Galaxy the wavelet signal is significantly enhanced, providing supportive evidence for the point source interpretation of the excess. In these proceedings we will extent our previous work with a spectral analysis and elaborate on the potential contamination from substructures in the gas.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Hooper, Dan; Mohlabeng, Gopolang E-mail: gopolang.mohlabeng@ku.edu

    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.

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

    DOE PAGES

    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

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

    SciTech Connect

    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 detected 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.; Theureau, G.; Thorsett, S. E.; Webb, N.

    2012-01-01

    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 and timing solutions based on radio observations conducted at the Westerbork and Nançay radio telescopes. In addition, we analyzed archival Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer and XMM-Newton X-ray data for the two MSPs, confirming the X-ray emission properties of PSR B1937+21 and finding evidence (~4σ) 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 profiles suggests co-located emission regions in the outer magnetosphere.

  10. DISCOVERY OF A 205.89 Hz ACCRETING MILLISECOND X-RAY PULSAR IN THE GLOBULAR CLUSTER NGC 6440

    SciTech Connect

    Altamirano, D.; Patruno, A.; Linares, M.; Wijnands, R.; Van der Klis, M.; Heinke, C. O.; Markwardt, C.; Strohmayer, T. E.; Swank, J. H.

    2010-03-20

    We report on the discovery of the second accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar (AMXP) in the globular cluster NGC 6440. Pulsations with a frequency of 205.89 Hz were detected with RXTE on 2009 August 30, October 1 and October 28, during the decays of {approx}<4 day outbursts of a newly X-ray transient source in NGC 6440. By studying the Doppler shift of the pulsation frequency, we find that the system is an ultra-compact binary with an orbital period of 57.3 minutes and a projected semimajor axis of 6.22 lt-ms. Based on the mass function, we estimate a lower limit to the mass of the companion to be 0.0067 M {sub sun} (assuming a 1.4 M {sub sun} neutron star). This new pulsar shows the shortest outburst recurrence time among AMXPs ({approx}1 month). If this behavior does not cease, this AMXP has the potential to be one of the best sources in which to study how the binary system and the neutron star spin evolve. Furthermore, the characteristics of this new source indicate that there might exist a population of AMXPs undergoing weak outbursts which are undetected by current all-sky X-ray monitors. NGC 6440 is the only globular cluster to host two known AMXPs, while no AMXPs have been detected in any other globular cluster.

  11. PULSED GAMMA RAYS FROM THE ORIGINAL MILLISECOND AND BLACK WIDOW PULSARS: A CASE FOR CAUSTIC RADIO EMISSION?

    SciTech Connect

    Guillemot, L.; Kramer, M.; Freire, P. C. C.; Noutsos, A.; Johnson, T. J.; Harding, A. K.; Venter, C.; Kerr, M.; Michelson, P. F.; Pancrazi, B.; Livingstone, M.; Janssen, G. H.; Jaroenjittichai, P.; Stappers, B. W.; Espinoza, C. M.; Cognard, I.; Camilo, F.; Gargano, F.; Grove, J. E.; Johnston, S. E-mail: tyrel.j.johnson@gmail.com E-mail: kerrm@stanford.edu; and others

    2012-01-01

    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 and timing solutions based on radio observations conducted at the Westerbork and Nancay radio telescopes. In addition, we analyzed archival Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer 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 profiles suggests co-located emission regions in the outer magnetosphere.

  12. THE NANOGRAV NINE-YEAR DATA SET: OBSERVATIONS, ARRIVAL TIME MEASUREMENTS, AND ANALYSIS OF 37 MILLISECOND PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Arzoumanian, Zaven; Brazier, Adam; Chatterjee, Shami; Cordes, James M.; Dolch, Timothy; Burke-Spolaor, Sarah; Demorest, Paul B.; Chamberlin, Sydney; Christy, Brian; Cornish, Neil; Crowter, Kathryn; Fonseca, Emmanuel; Gonzalez, Marjorie E.; Ellis, Justin A.; Ferdman, Robert D.; Kaspi, Victoria M.; Garver-Daniels, Nathan; Jones, Megan L.; Jenet, Fredrick A.; Jones, Glenn; Collaboration: NANOGrav Collaboration; and others

    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.

  13. 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.

  14. The NANOGrav Nine-year Data Set: Mass and Geometric Measurements of Binary Millisecond Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-12-01

    We analyze 24 binary radio pulsars in the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves (NANOGrav) nine-year data set. We make 14 significant measurements of the Shapiro delay, including new detections in four pulsar-binary systems (PSRs J0613-0200, J2017+0603, J2302+4442, and J2317+1439), and derive estimates of the binary-component masses and orbital inclination for these MSP-binary systems. We find a wide range of binary pulsar masses, with values as low as {m}{{p}}={1.18}-0.09+0.10 {M}⊙ for PSR J1918-0642 and as high as {m}{{p}}={1.928}-0.017+0.017 {M}⊙ for PSR J1614-2230 (both 68.3% credibility). We make an improved measurement of the Shapiro timing delay in the PSR J1918-0642 and J2043+1711 systems, measuring the pulsar mass in the latter system to be {m}{{p}}={1.41}-0.18+0.21 {M}⊙ (68.3% credibility) for the first time. We measure secular variations of one or more orbital elements in many systems, and use these measurements to further constrain our estimates of the pulsar and companion masses whenever possible. In particular, we used the observed Shapiro delay and periastron advance due to relativistic gravity in the PSR J1903+0327 system to derive a pulsar mass of {m}{{p}}={1.65}-0.02+0.02 {M}⊙ (68.3% credibility). We discuss the implications that our mass measurements have on the overall neutron-star mass distribution, and on the “mass/orbital-period” correlation due to extended mass transfer.

  15. THE TRANSIENT ACCRETING X-RAY PULSAR XTE J1946+274: STABILITY OF X-RAY PROPERTIES AT LOW FLUX AND UPDATED ORBITAL SOLUTION

    SciTech Connect

    Marcu-Cheatham, Diana M.; Pottschmidt, Katja; Kühnel, Matthias; Müller, Sebastian; Falkner, Sebastian; Kreykenbohm, Ingo; Caballero, Isabel; Jenke, Peter J.; Wilson-Hodge, Colleen A.; Fürst, Felix; Grinberg, Victoria; Hemphill, Paul B.; Rothschild, Richard E.; Klochkov, Dmitry; Terada, Yukikatsu; and others

    2015-12-10

    We present a timing and spectral analysis of the X-ray pulsar XTE J1946+274 observed with Suzaku during an outburst decline in 2010 October and compare with previous results. XTE J1946+274 is a transient X-ray binary consisting of a Be-type star and a neutron star with a 15.75 s pulse period in a 172 days orbit with 2–3 outbursts per orbit during phases of activity. We improve the orbital solution using data from multiple instruments. The X-ray spectrum can be described by an absorbed Fermi–Dirac cut-off power-law model along with a narrow Fe Kα line at 6.4 keV and a weak Cyclotron Resonance Scattering Feature (CRSF) at ∼35 keV. The Suzaku data are consistent with the previously observed continuum flux versus iron line flux correlation expected from fluorescence emission along the line of sight. However, the observed iron line flux is slightly higher, indicating the possibility of a higher iron abundance or the presence of non-uniform material. We argue that the source most likely has only been observed in the subcritical (non-radiation dominated) state since its pulse profile is stable over all observed luminosities and the energy of the CRSF is approximately the same at the highest (∼5 × 10{sup 37} erg s{sup −1}) and lowest (∼5 × 10{sup 36} erg s{sup −1}) observed 3–60 keV luminosities.

  16. A MODEL FOR THE WAVEFORM BEHAVIOR OF ACCRETING MILLISECOND X-RAY PULSARS: NEARLY ALIGNED MAGNETIC FIELDS AND MOVING EMISSION REGIONS

    SciTech Connect

    Lamb, Frederick K.; Boutloukos, Stratos; Van Wassenhove, Sandor; Chamberlain, Robert T.; Lo, Ka Ho; Clare, Alexander; Yu Wenfei; Miller, M. Coleman

    2009-11-20

    We investigate further a model of the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars we proposed earlier. In this model, the X-ray-emitting regions of these pulsars are near their spin axes but move. This is to be expected if the magnetic poles of these stars are close to their spin axes, so that accreting gas is channeled there. As the accretion rate and the structure of the inner disk vary, gas is channeled along different field lines to different locations on the stellar surface, causing the X-ray-emitting areas to move. We show that this 'nearly aligned moving spot model' can explain many properties of the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsars, including their generally low oscillation amplitudes and nearly sinusoidal waveforms; the variability of their pulse amplitudes, shapes, and phases; the correlations in this variability; and the similarity of the accretion- and nuclear-powered pulse shapes and phases in some. It may also explain why accretion-powered millisecond pulsars are difficult to detect, why some are intermittent, and why all detected so far are transients. This model can be tested by comparing with observations the waveform changes it predicts, including the changes with accretion rate.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halpern, Jules P.

    1999-03-01

    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 1019 CM-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 10-3 s-1 corresponds to an unabsorbed 0. 1-2.4 keV flux of 6.4 x 10-14 ergs cm-2 s-1, similar to that reported previously. This counts-to-flux conversion is valid for NH = 5 x 1019 cm-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 1030 ergs s-1 is 5 X 10-4 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, such modulation will be further evidence that surface reheating by the impact

  2. GRAVITATIONAL-WAVE SPIN-DOWN AND STALLING LOWER LIMITS ON THE ELECTRICAL RESISTIVITY OF THE ACCRETED MOUNTAIN IN A MILLISECOND PULSAR

    SciTech Connect

    Vigelius, M.; Melatos, A.

    2010-07-01

    The electrical resistivity of the accreted mountain in a millisecond pulsar is limited by the observed spin-down rate of binary radio millisecond pulsars (BRMSPs) and the spins and X-ray fluxes of accreting millisecond pulsars (AMSPs). We find {eta}{>=}10{sup -28} s ({tau}{sub SD}/1 Gyr){sup -0.8} (where {tau}{sub SD} is the spin-down age) for BRMSPs and {eta}{>=}10{sup -25} s ( M-dot{sub a}/ M-dot{sub E}){sup 0.6} (where M-dot{sub a} and M-dot{sub E} are the actual and Eddington accretion rates) for AMSPs. These limits are inferred assuming that the mountain attains a steady state, where matter diffuses resistively across magnetic flux surfaces but is replenished at an equal rate by infalling material. The mountain then relaxes further resistively after accretion ceases. The BRMSP spin-down limit approaches the theoretical electron-impurity resistivity at temperatures {approx_gt}10{sup 5} K for an impurity concentration of {approx}0.1, while the AMSP stalling limit falls 2 orders of magnitude below the theoretical electron-phonon resistivity for temperatures above 10{sup 8} K. Hence, BRMSP observations are already challenging theoretical resistivity calculations in a useful way. Next-generation gravitational-wave interferometers will constrain {eta} at a level that will be competitive with electromagnetic observations.

  3. XTE Science Briefing from KSCNF

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1995-01-01

    The X-ray Timing Explorer (XTE), launched on Dec. 30, 1995, is a Satellite that observes the fast-moving, high-energy worlds of black holes, neutron stars, x-ray pulsars and bursts of X-rays that light up the sky and then disappear forever. This videotape presents a pre-launch science briefing to the press by a few of the scientist and managers associated with the XTE satellite. The moderator for the press briefing is Jim Sahli, from the Public Affairs Office at Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). He introduces Alan Bunner, of the High Energy Astrophysics at NASA Headquarters; Fred Lamb, from the University of Illinois; Richard Mashotzky, X Ray Scientist at GSFC; Rick Rothschild, Principal Investigator from the University of California at San Diego; and Dale Schultz, the XTE project manager at GSFC. Dr. Bunner explains the electromagnetic spectrum, the placement of x-rays and the importance of the XTE observations to a better understanding of the Universe. Dr. Lamb, explains the difference between white dwarfs, neutron stars and black holes, and the type of observations that the XTE will give to a further understanding of these phenomena. Dr. Mashotzky expands the viewpoint to beyond the galaxy, and explains the interests of scientists who hope to use XTE to further study Quasars and Active Galactic Nuclei. Dr. Rothschild reviews some of the features of XTE, using a diagram to show the features of interest, such as the X ray Telescopes, and the collecting Proportional Counter Array (PCA.) Mr. Schultz presents a videotape tour of the XTE, in which he shows the scientific instruments and the other features of the satellite. In this tour, the source of each of the instruments is noted. Questions from the members of the press are then fielded. Many of the questions are about the cost of the XTE and any problems that are anticipated in regards to the launch.

  4. 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.

  5. 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}.

  6. TESTING THE MILLISECOND PULSAR SCENARIO OF THE GALACTIC CENTER GAMMA-RAY EXCESS WITH VERY HIGH ENERGY GAMMA-RAYS

    SciTech Connect

    Yuan, Qiang; Ioka, Kunihito

    2015-04-01

    Recent analyses of Fermi Large Area Telescope data show an extended GeV γ-ray excess on top of the expected diffuse background in the Galactic center region, which can be explained by annihilating dark matter (DM) or a population of millisecond pulsars (MSPs). We propose observations of very high energy (VHE) γ-rays to distinguish the MSP scenario from the DM scenario. GeV γ-ray MSPs should release most of their energy to the relativistic e{sup ±} wind, which will diffuse into the Galaxy and radiate TeV γ-rays through inverse Compton scattering and bremsstrahlung processes. By calculating the spectrum and spatial distribution, we show that such emission is detectable with the next generation VHE γ-ray observatory, the Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA), under reasonable model parameters. It is essential to search for multi-wavelength counterparts to the GeV γ-ray excess in order to solve this mystery in the high-energy universe.

  7. The 2009 outburst of accretion-powered millisecond pulsar IGR J17511-3057 as observed by Swift and RXTE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ibragimov, Askar; Poutanen, Juri; Kajava, Jari

    Accretion-powered millisecond pulsars (AMPs) are very interesting astrophysical objects. Mat-ter from accretion disk is captured by star's magnetic field and falls along the field lines, creating "hotspots" near magnetic poles of the star. Typical spectrum of an AMP contains a disk emis-sion, blackbody emission of a hotspot and a powerlaw tail, produced by thermal Comptonizaion in accreting shock. Pulse profiles of these sources are modified by relativistic effects and can be used to put geometrical constraints and to understand physical processes near the compact object. IGR J17511-3057 was discovered on September 12, 2009 during the INTEGRAL Galactic Bulge monitoring program. The source has the pulse frequency of 245 Hz. In this work, we study spectral and temporal characheristics of IGR J17511-3057 during the outburst, based on Swift and RXTE data. We analyze its energy spectra in range 0.6-150 keV, phase-resolved spectra, pulse profiles, time lags and discuss physical conditions in the source.

  8. FORMATION OF BINARY MILLISECOND PULSARS BY ACCRETION-INDUCED COLLAPSE OF WHITE DWARFS UNDER WIND-DRIVEN EVOLUTION

    SciTech Connect

    Ablimit, Iminhaji; Li, Xiang-Dong

    2015-02-20

    Accretion-induced collapse (AIC) of massive white dwarfs (WDs) has been proposed to be an important channel to form binary millisecond pulsars (MSPs). Recent investigations on thermal timescale mass transfer in WD binaries demonstrate that the resultant MSPs are likely to have relatively wide orbit periods (≳ 10 days). Here we calculate the evolution of WD binaries taking into account the excited wind from the companion star induced by X-ray irradiation of the accreting WD, which may drive rapid mass transfer even when the companion star is less massive than the WD. This scenario can naturally explain the formation of the strong-field neutron star in the low-mass X-ray binary 4U 1822–37. After AIC the mass transfer resumes when the companion star refills its Roche lobe, and the neutron star is recycled owing to mass accretion. A large fraction of the binaries will evolve to become binary MSPs with an He WD companion, with the orbital periods distributed between ≳ 0.1 days and ≲ 30 days, while some of them may follow the cataclysmic variable-like evolution toward very short orbits. If we instead assume that the newborn neutron star appears as an MSP and that part of its rotational energy is used to ablate its companion star, the binaries may also evolve to be the redback-like systems.

  9. 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 .

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Fermi Study of Gamma-ray Millisecond Pulsars: the Spectral Shape and Pulsed Emission from J0614-3329 up to 60 GeV

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xing, Yi; Wang, Zhongxiang

    2016-11-01

    We report our analysis of the Fermi Large Area Telescope data for 39 millisecond pulsars (MSPs) listed in the second γ-ray pulsar catalog. Spectra of the pulsars are obtained. We fit the spectra with a function of a power law with exponential cutoff, and find the best-fit parameters of photon index {{Γ }}={1.54}-0.11+0.10 and cutoff energy {E}{{c}}={3.70}-0.70+0.95 GeV. This spectral shape, which includes the intrinsic differences in the spectra of the MSPs, can be used for finding candidate MSPs and unidentified types of sources detected by Fermi at high Galactic latitudes. In one of the MSPs, PSR J0614-3329, we find significant pulsed emission up to 60 GeV. The result has thus added this MSP to the group of pulsars that have been detected with pulsed emission at energies of tens of GeV. Comparing the γ-ray spectrum of PSR J0614-3329 with those of the Crab and Vela pulsars, we discuss possible emission mechanisms for the very high-energy component.

  13. 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.

  14. MULTI-WAVELENGTH OBSERVATIONS OF 3FGL J2039.6–5618: A CANDIDATE REDBACK MILLISECOND PULSAR

    SciTech Connect

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

    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 Γ{sub X} = 1.36 ± 0.09, and hydrogen column density N{sub H} < 4 × 10{sup 20} cm{sup −2}, which gives an unabsorbed 0.3–10 keV X-ray flux of 1.02 × 10{sup −13} erg cm{sup −2} s{sup −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.

  15. 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.

  16. VERY LONG BASELINE INTERFEROMETRY MEASURED PROPER MOTION AND PARALLAX OF THE γ-RAY MILLISECOND PULSAR PSR J0218+4232

    SciTech Connect

    Du, Yuanjie; Chen, Ding; Yang, Jun; Campbell, Robert M.; Janssen, Gemma; Stappers, Ben

    2014-02-20

    PSR J0218+4232 is a millisecond pulsar (MSP) with a flux density ∼0.9 mJy at 1.4 GHz. It is very bright in the high-energy X-ray and γ-ray domains. We conducted an astrometric program using the European VLBI Network (EVN) at 1.6 GHz to measure its proper motion and parallax. A model-independent distance would also help constrain its γ-ray luminosity. We achieved a detection of signal-to-noise ratio S/N >37 for the weak pulsar in all five epochs. Using an extragalactic radio source lying 20 arcmin away from the pulsar, we estimate the pulsar's proper motion to be μ{sub α}cos δ = 5.35 ± 0.05 mas yr{sup –1} and μ{sub δ} = –3.74 ± 0.12 mas yr{sup –1}, and a parallax of π = 0.16 ± 0.09 mas. The very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) proper motion has significantly improved upon the estimates from long-term pulsar timing observations. The VLBI parallax provides the first model-independent distance constraints: d=6.3{sub −2.3}{sup +8.0} kpc, with a corresponding 3σ lower-limit of d = 2.3 kpc. This is the first pulsar trigonometric parallax measurement based solely on EVN observations. Using the derived distance, we believe that PSR J0218+4232 is the most energetic γ-ray MSP known to date. The luminosity based on even our 3σ lower-limit distance is high enough to pose challenges to the conventional outer gap and slot gap models.

  17. Pulsars - The New Celestial Clocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Backer, D. C.

    Pulsars A Brief History of Neutron Stars Standard Model of Pulsars Origin and Evolution of Isolated Neutron Stars Radio Astronomy Fundamentals Radiation Properties Radio Telescopes Radio Astronomy Receivers Propogation in the Interstellar Medium Search Techniques Pulsar Timing Systems Further Topics on Radio Wave Propagation Absorption Birefringence Scattering Solar Wind and Ionosphere Relativistic Delay in Solar System Potential Pulsar Timing Arrival Time Measurement Time Correction Space Correction Pulsar Parameter Estimation Rotation Noise Astrometry Binary, Millisecond and Globular Cluster Pulsars Origin and Evolution Keplerian Binary Pulsar Timing Relativistic Binary Pulsars Globular Cluster Pulsars Planets Around Pulsars Pulsar Timing Array Time Coordinate Space Coordinate Gravitational Wave Background Pulsar Timing Array Experiments References

  18. FORMATION OF THE GALACTIC MILLISECOND PULSAR TRIPLE SYSTEM PSR J0337+1715—A NEUTRON STAR WITH TWO ORBITING WHITE DWARFS

    SciTech Connect

    Tauris, T. M.; Van den Heuvel, E. P. J.

    2014-01-20

    The millisecond pulsar in a triple system (PSR J0337+1715, recently discovered by Ransom et al.) is an unusual neutron star with two orbiting white dwarfs. The existence of such a system in the Galactic field poses new challenges to stellar astrophysics for understanding evolution, interactions, and mass transfer in close multiple stellar systems. In addition, this system provides the first precise confirmation for a very wide-orbit system of the white dwarf mass-orbital period relation. Here, we present a self-consistent, semi-analytical solution to the formation of PSR J0337+1715. Our model constrains the peculiar velocity of the system to be less than 160 km s{sup –1} and brings novel insight to, for example, common envelope evolution in a triple system, for which we find evidence for in-spiral of both outer stars. Finally, we briefly discuss our scenario in relation to alternative models.

  19. IDENTIFICATION OF THE HIGH-ENERGY GAMMA-RAY SOURCE 3FGL J1544.6–1125 AS A TRANSITIONAL MILLISECOND PULSAR BINARY IN AN ACCRETING STATE

    SciTech Connect

    Bogdanov, Slavko; Halpern, Jules P.

    2015-04-20

    We present X-ray, ultraviolet, and optical observations of 1RXS J154439.4–112820, the most probable counterpart of the unassociated Fermi-LAT source 3FGL J1544.6–1125. The optical data reveal rapid variability, which is a feature of accreting systems. The X-rays exhibit large-amplitude variations in the form of fast switching (within ∼10 s) between two distinct flux levels that differ by a factor of ≈10. The detailed optical and X-ray behavior is virtually identical to that seen in the accretion-disk-dominated states of the transitional millisecond pulsar (MSP) binaries PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270–4859, which are also associated with γ-ray sources. Based on the available observational evidence, we conclude that 1RXS J154439.4–112820 and 3FGL J1544.6–1125 are the same object, with the X-rays arising from intermittent low-luminosity accretion onto an MSP and the γ-rays originating from an accretion-driven outflow. 1RXS J154439.4–112820 is only the fourth γ-ray-emitting low-mass X-ray binary system to be identified and is likely to sporadically undergo transformations to a non-accreting rotation-powered pulsar system.

  20. THE OPTICAL COMPANION TO THE INTERMEDIATE-MASS MILLISECOND PULSAR J1439-5501 IN THE GALACTIC FIELD

    SciTech Connect

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

    2013-08-20

    We present the identification of the companion star to the intermediate-mass binary pulsar (PSR) J1439-5501 obtained by means of ground-based deep images in the B, V, and I bands, acquired with FORS2 mounted at the European Southern Observatory (ESO)-Very Large Telescope (VLT). The companion is a massive white dwarf (WD) with B = 23.57 {+-} 0.02, V = 23.21 {+-} 0.01, and I = 22.96 {+-} 0.01, located at only {approx}0.''05 from the pulsar radio position. Comparing the WD location in the (B, B-V) and (V, V-I) color-magnitude diagrams with theoretical cooling sequences, we derived a range of plausible combinations of companion masses (1 M{sub Sun} {approx}< M{sub COM} {approx}< 1.3 M{sub Sun }), distances (d {approx}< 1200 pc), radii ({approx}< 7.810{sup -3} R{sub Sun }), and temperatures (T=31350{sup +21500}{sub -7400}). From the PSR mass function and the estimated mass range we also constrained the inclination angle i {approx}> 55 Degree-Sign and the pulsar mass (M{sub PSR} {approx}< 2.2 M{sub Sun }). The comparison between the WD cooling age and the spin-down age suggests that the latter is overestimated by a factor of about 10.

  1. DISCOVERY OF PSR J1227−4853: A TRANSITION FROM A LOW-MASS X-RAY BINARY TO A REDBACK MILLISECOND PULSAR

    SciTech Connect

    Roy, Jayanta; Bhattacharyya, Bhaswati; Stappers, Ben; Ray, Paul S.; Wolff, Michael; Wood, Kent S.; Chengalur, Jayaram N.; Deneva, Julia; Camilo, Fernando; Johnson, Tyrel J.; Hessels, Jason W. T.; Bassa, Cees G.; Keane, Evan F.; Ferrara, Elizabeth C.; Harding, Alice K.

    2015-02-10

    XSS J12270−4859 is an X-ray binary associated with the Fermi Large Area Telescope gamma-ray source 1FGL J1227.9−4852. In 2012 December, this source underwent a transition where the X-ray and optical luminosity dropped and the spectral signatures of an accretion disk disappeared. We report the discovery of a 1.69 millisecond pulsar (MSP), PSR J1227−4853, at a dispersion measure of 43.4 pc cm{sup −3} associated with this source, using the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope (GMRT) at 607 MHz. This demonstrates that, post-transition, the system hosts an active radio MSP. This is the third system after PSR J1023+0038 and PSR J1824−2452I showing evidence of state switching between radio MSP and low-mass X-ray binary states. We report timing observations of PSR J1227−4853 with the GMRT and Parkes, which give a precise determination of the rotational and orbital parameters of the system. The companion mass measurement of 0.17–0.46 M{sub ⊙} suggests that this is a redback system. PSR J1227−4853 is eclipsed for about 40% of its orbit at 607 MHz with additional short-duration eclipses at all orbital phases. We also find that the pulsar is very energetic, with a spin-down luminosity of ∼10{sup 35} erg s{sup −1}. We report simultaneous imaging and timing observations with the GMRT, which suggests that eclipses are caused by absorption rather than dispersion smearing or scattering.

  2. Neutron star crustal plate tectonics. I. Magnetic dipole evolution in millisecond pulsars and low-mass X-ray binaries

    SciTech Connect

    Ruderman, M. )

    1991-01-01

    Crust lattices in spinning-up or spinning-down neutron stars have growing shear stresses caused by neutron superfluid vortex lines pinned to lattice nuclei. For the most rapidly spinning stars, this stress will break and move the crust before vortex unpinning occurs. In spinning-down neutron stars, crustal plates will move an equatorial subduction zone in which the plates are forced into the stellar core below the crust. The opposite plate motion occurs in spinning-up stars. Magnetic fields which pass through the crust or have sources in it move with the crust. Spun-up neutron stars in accreting low-mass X-ray binaries LMXBs should then have almost axially symmetric magnetic fields. Spun-down ones with very weak magnetic fields should have external magnetic fields which enter and leave the neutron star surface only near its equator. The lowest field millisecond radiopulsars seem to be orthogonal rotators implying that they have not previously been spun-up in LMXBs but are neutron stars initially formed with periods near 0.001 s that subsequently spin down to their present periods. Accretion-induced white dwarf collapse is then the most plausible genesis for them. 29 refs.

  3. Discovery of a soft X-ray 8 mHz QPO from the accreting millisecond pulsar IGR J00291+5934

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferrigno, C.; Bozzo, E.; Sanna, A.; Pintore, F.; Papitto, A.; Riggio, A.; Burderi, L.; Di Salvo, T.; Iaria, R.; D'Aì, A.

    2017-04-01

    We report on the analysis of the peculiar X-ray variability displayed by the accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar IGR J00291+5934 in a 80 ks-long joint NuSTAR and XMM-Newton observation performed during the source outburst in 2015. The light curve of the source is characterized by a flaring-like behaviour, with typical rise and decay time-scales of ∼120 s. The flares are accompanied by a remarkable spectral variability, with the X-ray emission being generally softer at the peak of the flares. A strong quasi-periodic oscillation (QPO) is detected at ∼8 mHz in the power spectrum of the source and clearly associated with the flaring-like behaviour. This feature has the strongest power at soft X-rays ( ≲ 3 keV). We carried out a dedicated hardness-ratio-resolved spectral analysis and a QPO phase-resolved spectral analysis, together with an in-depth study of the source-timing properties, to investigate the origin of this behaviour. We suggest that the unusual variability of IGR J00291+5934 observed by XMM-Newton and NuSTAR could be produced by a heartbeat-like mechanism, similar to that observed in black hole X-ray binaries. The possibility that this variability, and the associated QPO, are triggered by phases of quasi-stable nuclear burning, as sustained in the literature for a number of other neutron star binaries displaying a similar behaviour, cannot be solidly tested in the case of IGR J00291+5934 due to the paucity of type I X-ray bursts detected from this source.

  4. THE QUIESCENT X-RAY PROPERTIES OF THE ACCRETING MILLISECOND X-RAY PULSAR AND ECLIPSING BINARY SWIFT J1749.4-2807

    SciTech Connect

    Degenaar, N.; Patruno, A.; Wijnands, R.

    2012-09-10

    Swift J1749.4-2807 is a transient neutron star low-mass X-ray binary that contains an accreting millisecond X-ray pulsar spinning at 518 Hz. It is the first of its kind that displays X-ray eclipses, which holds significant promise to precisely constrain the mass of the neutron star. We report on a {approx_equal} 105 ks long XMM-Newton observation performed when Swift J1749.4-2807 was in quiescence. We detect the source at a 0.5-10 keV luminosity of {approx_equal}1 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 33}(D/6.7 kpc){sup 2} erg s{sup -1}. The X-ray light curve displays three eclipses that are consistent in orbital phase and duration with the ephemeris derived during outburst. Unlike most quiescent neutron stars, the X-ray spectrum can be adequately described with a simple power law, while a pure-hydrogen atmosphere model does not fit the data. We place an upper limit on the 0.01-100 keV thermal luminosity of the cooling neutron star of {approx}< 2 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 33} erg s{sup -1} and constrain its temperature to be {approx}< 0.1 keV (for an observer at infinity). Timing analysis does not reveal evidence for X-ray pulsations near the known spin frequency of the neutron star or its first overtone with a fractional rms of {approx}< 34% and {approx}< 28%, respectively. We discuss the implications of our findings for dynamical mass measurements, the thermal state of the neutron star, and the origin of the quiescent X-ray emission.

  5. Pulse structure of four pulsars.

    PubMed

    Drake, F D; Craft, H D

    1968-05-17

    The pulse structure of the four known pulsars is given. The pulse is about 38 milliseconds for the two pulsars of longest period, and within the pulsewidth three subpulses typically appear. The pulsar of next longest period typically radiates two pulses separated about 23 milliseconds in time. The one short-period pulsar emits single pulses of constant shape. The first subpulses of all pulsars have nearly the same shape. The shape of the first subpulse agrees well with the pulse shape expected from a radio-emitting sphere which is excited by a spherically expanding disturbance, and in which the radio emission, once excited, decays exponentially.

  6. Gamma-Ray Pulsars

    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 detection of over 80 gamma-ray pulsars. Several new populations have been discovered, including 24 radio quiet pulsars found through gamma-ray pulsations alone and about 20 millisecond gamma-ray pulsars. The gamma-ray pulsations from millisecond pulsars were discovered by both folding at periods of known radio millisecond pulsars 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 -35 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. The higher sensitivity and larger energy range of the Fermi Large Area Telescope has produced detailed energy-dependent light curves and phase-resolved spectroscopy on brighter pulsars, that have ruled out polar cap models as the major source of the emission in favor of outer magnetosphere accelerators. The large number of gamma-ray pulsars now allows for the first time meaningful population and sub-population studies that are revealing surprising properties of these fascinating sources.

  7. Ensemble Pulsar Time Scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yin, D. S.; Gao, Y. P.; Zhao, S. H.

    2016-05-01

    Millisecond pulsars can generate another type of time scale that is totally independent of the atomic time scale, because the physical mechanisms of the pulsar time scale and the atomic time scale are quite different from each other. Usually the pulsar timing observational data are not evenly sampled, and the internals between data points range from several hours to more than half a month. What's more, these data sets are sparse. And all these make it difficult to generate an ensemble pulsar time scale. Hence, a new algorithm to calculate the ensemble pulsar time scale is proposed. Firstly, we use cubic spline interpolation to densify the data set, and make the intervals between data points even. Then, we employ the Vondrak filter to smooth the data set, and get rid of high-frequency noise, finally adopt the weighted average method to generate the ensemble pulsar time scale. The pulsar timing residuals represent clock difference between the pulsar time and atomic time, and the high precision pulsar timing data mean the clock difference measurement between the pulsar time and atomic time with a high signal to noise ratio, which is fundamental to generate pulsar time. We use the latest released NANOGRAV (North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves) 9-year data set to generate the ensemble pulsar time scale. This data set is from the newest NANOGRAV data release, which includes 9-year observational data of 37 millisecond pulsars using the 100-meter Green Bank telescope and 305-meter Arecibo telescope. We find that the algorithm used in this paper can lower the influence caused by noises in timing residuals, and improve long-term stability of pulsar time. Results show that the long-term (> 1 yr) frequency stability of the pulsar time is better than 3.4×10-15.

  8. Pulsar-irradiated stars in dense globular clusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tavani, Marco

    1992-01-01

    We discuss the properties of stars irradiated by millisecond pulsars in 'hard' binaries of dense globular clusters. Irradiation by a relativistic pulsar wind as in the case of the eclipsing millisecond pulsar PSR 1957+20 alter both the magnitude and color of the companion star. Some of the blue stragglers (BSs) recently discovered in dense globular clusters can be irradiated stars in binaries containing powerful millisecond pulsars. The discovery of pulsar-driven orbital modulations of BS brightness and color with periods of a few hours together with evidence for radio and/or gamma-ray emission from BS binaries would valuably contribute to the understanding of the evolution of collapsed stars in globular clusters. Pulsar-driven optical modulation of cluster stars might be the only observable effect of a new class of binary pulsars, i.e., hidden millisecond pulsars enshrouded in the evaporated material lifted off from the irradiated companion star.

  9. Torque Enhancement, Spin Equilibrium, and Jet Power from Disk-Induced Opening of Pulsar Magnetic Fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parfrey, Kyle; Spitkovsky, Anatoly; Beloborodov, Andrei M.

    2016-05-01

    The interaction of a rotating star’s magnetic field with a surrounding plasma disk lies at the heart of many questions posed by neutron stars in X-ray binaries. We consider the opening of stellar magnetic flux due to differential rotation along field lines coupling the star and disk, using a simple model for the disk-opened flux, the torques exerted on the star by the magnetosphere, and the power extracted by the electromagnetic wind. We examine the conditions under which the system enters an equilibrium spin state, in which the accretion torque is instantaneously balanced by the pulsar wind torque alone. For magnetic moments, spin frequencies, and accretion rates relevant to accreting millisecond pulsars, the spin-down torque from this enhanced pulsar wind can be substantially larger than that predicted by existing models of the disk-magnetosphere interaction, and is in principle capable of maintaining spin equilibrium at frequencies less than 1 kHz. We speculate that this mechanism may account for the non-detection of frequency increases during outbursts of SAX J1808.4-3658 and XTE J1814-338, and may be generally responsible for preventing spin-up to sub-millisecond periods. If the pulsar wind is collimated by the surrounding environment, the resulting jet can satisfy the power requirements of the highly relativistic outflows from Cir X-1 and Sco X-1. In this framework, the jet power scales relatively weakly with accretion rate, {L}{{j}}\\propto {\\dot{M}}4/7, and would be suppressed at high accretion rates only if the stellar magnetic moment is sufficiently low.

  10. X-Ray and Optical Study of the Gamma-ray Source 3FGL J0838.8–2829: Identification of a Candidate Millisecond Pulsar Binary and an Asynchronous Polar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halpern, Jules P.; Bogdanov, Slavko; Thorstensen, John R.

    2017-04-01

    We observed the field of the Fermi source 3FGL J0838.8‑2829 in optical and X-rays, initially motivated by the cataclysmic variable (CV) 1RXS J083842.1‑282723 that lies within its error circle. Several X-ray sources first classified as CVs have turned out to be γ-ray emitting millisecond pulsars (MSPs). We find that 1RXS J083842.1‑282723 is in fact an unusual CV, a stream-fed asynchronous polar in which accretion switches between magnetic poles (that are ≈120° apart) when the accretion rate is at minimum. High-amplitude X-ray modulation at periods of 94.8 ± 0.4 minutes and 14.7 ± 1.2 hr are seen. The former appears to be the spin period, while the latter is inferred to be one-third of the beat period between the spin and the orbit, implying an orbital period of 98.3 ± 0.5 minutes. We also measure an optical emission-line spectroscopic period of 98.413 ± 0.004 minutes, which is consistent with the orbital period inferred from the X-rays. In any case, this system is unlikely to be the γ-ray source. Instead, we find a fainter variable X-ray and optical source, XMMU J083850.38‑282756.8, that is modulated on a timescale of hours in addition to exhibiting occasional sharp flares. It resembles the black widow or redback pulsars that have been discovered as counterparts of Fermi sources, with the optical modulation due to heating of the photosphere of a low-mass companion star by, in this case, an as-yet undetected MSP. We propose XMMU J083850.38‑282756.8 as the MSP counterpart of 3FGL J0838.8‑2829.

  11. Chandra X-Ray Observatory Observations of the Globular Cluster M28 and its Millisecond Pulsar PSR B1821-24

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Becker, Werner; Swartz, Douglas A.; Pavlov, George G.; Elsner, Ronald F.; Grindlay, Jonathan; Mignani, Roberto; Tennant, Allyn F.; Backer, Don; Weisskopf, Martin C.

    2003-01-01

    We report here the results of the first Chandra X-Ray Observatory observations of the globular cluster M28 (NGC 6626). We detect 46 X-ray sources of which 12 lie within one core radius of the center. We show that the apparently extended X-ray core emission seen with the ROSAT HRI is due to the superposition of multiple discrete sources for which we determine the X-ray luminosity function down to a limit of about 6 x 10(exp 30) erg/s. We measure the radial distribution of the X-ray sources and fit it to a King profile finding a core radius of r(sub c,x) approx. 11 sec. We obtain the best-fit mass of the X-ray sources to be M(sub x) approx. 1.9 solar masses. We measure for the first time the unconfused phase-averaged X-ray spectrum of the 3.05-ms pulsar B1821-24 and find it best described by a power law with photon-index Gamma approx. equal to 1.2. We find marginal evidence of an emission line centered at 3.3 kev in the pulsar spectrum, which could be interpreted as cyclotron emission from a corona above the pulsar's polar cap if the the magnetic field is strongly different from a centered dipole. The unabsorbed pulsar flux in the 0.5-8.0 keV band is approx. 3.5 x 10(exp -13) ergs/s/sq cm. We present spectral analyses of the 5 brightest unidentified sources. Based on the spectral parameters of the brightest of these sources, we suggest that it is a transiently accreting neutron star in a low-mass X-ray binary, in quiescence. Fitting its spectrum with a hydrogen neutron star atmosphere model yields the effective temperature T(sup infinity)(sub eff) = 90(sup +30)(sub -10) eV and the radius R(sup infinity)(sub NS) = 14.5(sup +6.9)(sub -3.8) km. In addition to the resolved sources, we detect fainter, unresolved X-ray emission from the central core. Using the Chandra-derived positions, we also present a preliminary report on the result of searching archival Hubble Space Telescope data for possible optical counterparts.

  12. Atomic time scales and pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petit, G.

    2014-12-01

    I review the atomic time scales generated by the BIPM, International Atomic Time TAI and the realization of Terrestrial Time TT(BIPM). TT(BIPM) is shown to be now accurate to within a few 10..16 in relative frequency and the performances of TAI and TT(BIPM) are compared. Millisecond pulsars have a very regular period of rotation and data from several pulsars may be used to realize an ensemble pulsar timescale. It is shown that a pulsar timescale may detect past instabilities in TAI. However TT(BIPM) is much more stable than TAI and should be used as a reference in pulsar analysis. Since the beginning of regular millisecond pulsar observations in the 1980s, primary standards and atomic time have gained one order of magnitude in accuracy every ~ 12 years, and this trend should continue for some time.

  13. The 2015 outburst of the accreting millisecond pulsar IGR J17511-3057 as seen by INTEGRAL, Swift, and XMM-Newton

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Papitto, A.; Bozzo, E.; Sanchez-Fernandez, C.; Romano, P.; Torres, , D. F.; Ferrigno, C.; Kajava, J. J. E.; Kuulkers, E.

    2016-12-01

    We report on INTEGRAL, Swift, and XMM-Newton observations of IGR J17511-3057 performed during the outburst that occurred between March 23 and April 25, 2015. The source reached a peak flux of 0.7(2) × 10-9 erg cm-2 s-1 and decayed to quiescence in approximately a month. The X-ray spectrum was dominated by a power law with photon index between 1.6 and 1.8, which we interpreted as thermal Comptonization in an electron cloud with temperature >20 keV. A broad (σ ≃ 1 keV) emission line was detected at an energy ( keV) compatible with the K-α transition of ionized Fe, suggesting an origin in the inner regions of the accretion disk. The outburst flux and spectral properties shown during this outburst were remarkably similar to those observed during the previous accretion event detected from the source in 2009. Coherent pulsations at the pulsar spin period were detected in the XMM-Newton and INTEGRAL data at a frequency compatible with the value observed in 2009. Assuming that the source spun up during the 2015 outburst at the same rate observed during the previous outburst, we derive a conservative upper limit on the spin-down rate during quiescence of 3.5 × 10-15 Hz s-1. Interpreting this value in terms of electromagnetic spin-down yields an upper limit of 3.6 × 1026 G cm3 to the pulsar magnetic dipole (assuming a magnetic inclination angle of 30°). We also report on the detection of five type-I X-ray bursts (three in the XMM-Newton data, two in the INTEGRAL data), none of which indicated photospheric radius expansion.

  14. Ejector and propeller spin-down: how might a superluminous supernova millisecond magnetar become the 6.67 h pulsar in RCW 103

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ho, Wynn C. G.; Andersson, Nils

    2017-01-01

    The X-ray source 1E 161348-5055 in the supernova remnant RCW 103 recently exhibited X-ray activity typical of magnetars, i.e. neutron stars with magnetic fields ≳ 1014-1015 G. However, 1E 161348-5055 has an observed period of 6.67 h, in contrast to magnetars which have a spin period of seconds. Here we describe a simple model which can explain the spin evolution of 1E 161348-5055, as well as other magnetars, from an initial period of milliseconds that would be required for dynamo generation of magnetar-strength magnetic fields. We propose that the key difference between 1E 161348-5055 and other magnetars is the persistence of a remnant disc of small total mass. This disc caused 1E 161348-5055 to undergo ejector and propeller phases in its life, during which strong torques caused a rapid increase of its spin period. By matching its observed spin period and ≈1-3 kyr age, we find that 1E 161348-5055 has the (slightly) highest magnetic field of all known magnetars, with B ˜ 5 × 1015 G, and that its disc had a mass of ˜1024 g, comparable to that of the asteroid Ceres.

  15. Different twins in the millisecond pulsar recycling scenario: Optical polarimetry of PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270-4859

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baglio, M. C.; D'Avanzo, P.; Campana, S.; Coti Zelati, F.; Covino, S.; Russell, D. M.

    2016-06-01

    We present the first optical polarimetric study of the two transitional pulsars PSR J1023+0038 and XSS J12270-4859. This work is focused on the search for intrinsically linearly polarised optical emission from the two systems. To this aim, we carried out multiband optical (BVRi) and near-infrared (NIR; JHK) photo-polarimetric observations of the two systems using the ESO New Technology Telescope (NTT) at La Silla (Chile), equipped with the EFOSC2 and the SOFI instruments. The system XSS J12270-4859 was observed during its radio-pulsar state; we did not detect a significant degree of polarisation in any of the bands, with 3σ upper limits, for example, of 1.4% in the R-band. We built the NIR-optical averaged spectral energy distribution (SED) of the system, which could be described well by an irradiated black body with radius R∗ = 0.33 ± 0.03 R⊙ and albedo η = 0.32 ± 0.05, without the need for further components. Thus, we excluded the visible presence of an extended accretion disc and/or of relativistic jets. The case was different for PSR J1023+0038, which was in its accretion phase during our campaign. We measured a linear polarisation of 1.09 ± 0.27% and 0.90 ± 0.17% in the V and R bands, respectively. The phase-resolved polarimetric curve of the source in the R band reveals a hint of a sinusoidal modulation at the source 4.75 h orbital period, peaked at the same orbital phase as the light curve. The measured optical polarisation of PSR J1023+0038 could, in principle, be interpreted as electron scattering with free electrons, which can be found in the accretion disc of the system or even in the hot corona that sorrounds the disc itself, or as synchrotron emission from a jet of relativistic particles or an outflow. However, the NIR-optical SED of the system built from our dataset did not suggest the presence of a jet. We conclude that the optical linear polarisation observed for PSR J1023+0038 is possibly due to Thomson scattering with electrons in the

  16. Discovery of a Transient Magnetar: XTE J1810-197

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ibrahim, Alaa I.; Markwardt, Craig B.; Swank, Jean H.; Ransom, Scott; Roberts, Mallory; Kaspi, Victoria; Woods, Peter M.; Safi-Harb, Samar; Balman, Solen; Parke, William C.

    2004-01-01

    We report the discovery of a new X-ray pulsar, XTE J1810-197, that was serendipitously discovered on 2003 July 15 by the Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) while observing the soft gamma repeater SGR 1806-20. The pulsar has a 5.54 s spin period, a soft X-ray spectrum (with a photon index of approx. = 4). and is detectable in earlier RXTE observations back to 2003 January but not before. These show that a transient outburst began between 2002 November 17 and 2003 January 23 and that the source's persistent X-ray flux has been declining since then. The pulsar exhibits a high spin-down rate P approx.= l0(exp -11) s/s with no evidence of Doppler shifts due to a binary companion. The rapid spin-down rate and slow spin period imply a supercritical characteristic magnetic field B approx. = 3 x l0(exp 14) G and a young age tau less than or = 7600 yr. Follow-up Chandra observations provided an accurate position of the source. Within its error radius, the 1.5 m Russian-Turkish Optical Telescope found a limiting magnitude R(sub c) = 21.5. All such properties are strikingly similar to those of anomalous X-ray pulsars ad soft gamma repeaters, providing strong evidence that the source is a new magnetar. However, archival ASCA and ROSAT observations found the source nearly 2 orders of magnitude fainter. This transient behavior and the observed long-term flux variability of the source in absence of an observed SGR-like burst activity make it the first confirmed transient magnetar and suggest that other neutron stars that share the properties of XTE 51810- 197 during its inactive phase may be unidentified transient magnetars awaiting detection via a similar activity. This implies a larger population of magnetars than previously surmised and a possible evolutionary connection between magnetars and other neutron star families. Subject headings: pulsars: general -pulsars: individual (XTE 51810- 197) - stars: magnetic fields -

  17. SEXTANT: A Demonstration of X-ray Pulsar-Based Navigation Using NICER

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, Paul S.; Mitchell, Jason W; Winternitz, Luke M; Hasouneh, Monther A; Price, Samuel R; Valdez, Jennifer; Yu, Wayne H; Semper, Sean R; Wood, Kent S.; Wolff, Michael Thomas; Arzoumanian, Zaven; Litchford, Ronald J; Gendreau, Keith

    2014-08-01

    The Station Explorer for X-ray Timing and Navigation Technology (SEXTANT) is a technology-demonstration enhancement to the Neutron-star Interior Composition Explorer (NICER) mission. NICER is a NASA Explorer Mission of Opportunity that will be hosted on the International Space Station (ISS). SEXTANT will, for the first time, demonstrate real-time, on-board X-ray pulsar-based navigation (XNAV), a significant milestone in the quest to establish a GPS-like navigation capability available throughout our Solar System and beyond. The SEXTANT XNAV demonstration will exploit the large collecting area (>1800 cm^2), low background (<0.2 counts/s), and precise timing (<300 ns) of the NICER X-ray Timing Instrument (XTE). Taking advantage of NICER’s science observations of X-ray emitting millisecond pulsars, which are nature’s most stable clocks, the SEXTANT flight software will demonstrate real-time orbit determination with error less than 10 km in any direction, through measurements made over 2 weeks or less in the highly dynamic low-Earth ISS orbit. The completed technology demonstration will bring the XNAV concept and algorithms to a Technology Readiness Level of 8 and will inform the design and configuration of future practical XNAV implementations.

  18. Improving Recent Large-Scale Pulsar Surveys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cardoso, Rogerio Fernando; Ransom, S.

    2011-01-01

    Pulsars are unique in that they act as celestial laboratories for precise tests of gravity and other extreme physics (Kramer 2004). There are approximately 2000 known pulsars today, which is less than ten percent of pulsars in the Milky Way according to theoretical models (Lorimer 2004). Out of these 2000 known pulsars, approximately ten percent are known millisecond pulsars, objects used for their period stability for detailed physics tests and searches for gravitational radiation (Lorimer 2008). As the field and instrumentation progress, pulsar astronomers attempt to overcome observational biases and detect new pulsars, consequently discovering new millisecond pulsars. We attempt to improve large scale pulsar surveys by examining three recent pulsar surveys. The first, the Green Bank Telescope 350MHz Drift Scan, a low frequency isotropic survey of the northern sky, has yielded a large number of candidates that were visually inspected and identified, resulting in over 34.000 thousands candidates viewed, dozens of detections of known pulsars, and the discovery of a new low-flux pulsar, PSRJ1911+22. The second, the PALFA survey, is a high frequency survey of the galactic plane with the Arecibo telescope. We created a processing pipeline for the PALFA survey at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in Charlottesville- VA, in addition to making needed modifications upon advice from the PALFA consortium. The third survey examined is a new GBT 820MHz survey devoted to find new millisecond pulsars by observing the target-rich environment of unidentified sources in the FERMI LAT catalogue. By approaching these three pulsar surveys at different stages, we seek to improve the success rates of large scale surveys, and hence the possibility for ground-breaking work in both basic physics and astrophysics.

  19. Limits to the Stability of Pulsar Time

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Petit, Gerard

    1996-01-01

    The regularity of the rotation rate of millisecond pulsars is the underlying hypothesis for using these neutron stars as 'celestial clocks'. Given their remote location in our galaxy and to our lack of precise knowledge on the galactic environment, a number of phenomena effect the apparent rotation rate observed on Earth. This paper reviews these phenomena and estimates the order of magnitude of their effect. It concludes that an ensemble pulsar time based on a number of selected millisecond pulsars should have a fractional frequency stability close to 2 x 10(sup -15) for an averaging time of a few years.

  20. Population statistics of radio and γ-ray pulsars from the Galactic disk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonthier, Peter L.; Story, Sarah A.; Clow, Brian D.; Harding, Alice K.

    2008-01-01

    We present results of our population synthesis of normal and millisecond pulsars from the Galactic disk. Over the past several years, a program has been developed to simulate pulsar birth, evolution, and emission using Monte Carlo techniques. We have added to the program the capability to simulate millisecond pulsars, which are old, recycled pulsars with extremely short periods. We model the spatial distribution of millisecond pulsars by assuming they start with a random kick velocity and then evolve through the Galactic potential. We use a polar cap/slot gap model for gamma-ray emission from both millisecond and normal pulsars. We also include gamma-ray emission from an outer-gap model to compare the statistics of radio-loud and radio-faint gamma-ray pulsars on the same footing as pulsars from our polar cap/slot gap model. From our studies of radio pulsars that have clearly identifiable core and cone components, in which we fit the polarization sweep as well as the pulse profiles to constrain the viewing geometry, we develop a model describing the ratio of radio core-to-cone peak fluxes. In this model, short period pulsars are more cone-dominated than in our previous studies. We present the preliminary results of our recent study including comparisons between these two groups of pulsars and the implications for observing these pulsars with GLAST and AGILE. GLAST should detect significant numbers of millisecond pulsars.

  1. Basic physics and cosmology from pulsar timing data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Taylor, J. H.

    1991-01-01

    Radio pulsars provide unparalleled opportunities for making measurements of astrophysically interesting phenomena. The author concentrates on two particular applications of high precision timing observations of pulsars: tests of relativistic gravitation theory using the binary pulsar 1913+16, and tests of cosmological models using timing data from millisecond pulsars. New upper limits are presented for the energy density of a cosmic background of low frequency gravitational radiation.

  2. Pulsar timing and general relativity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Backer, D. C.; Hellings, R. W.

    1986-01-01

    Techniques are described for accounting for relativistic effects in the analysis of pulsar signals. Design features of instrumentation used to achieve millisecond accuracy in the signal measurements are discussed. The accuracy of the data permits modeling the pulsar physical characteristics from the natural glitches in the emissions. Relativistic corrections are defined for adjusting for differences between the pulsar motion in its spacetime coordinate system relative to the terrestrial coordinate system, the earth's motion, and the gravitational potentials of solar system bodies. Modifications of the model to allow for a binary pulsar system are outlined, including treatment of the system as a point mass. Finally, a quadrupole model is presented for gravitational radiation and techniques are defined for using pulsars in the search for gravitational waves.

  3. Pulsar lensing geometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Siqi; Pen, Ue-Li; Macquart, J.-P.; Brisken, Walter; Deller, Adam

    2016-05-01

    We test the inclined sheet pulsar scintillation model (Pen & Levin) against archival very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) data on PSR 0834+06 and show that its scintillation properties can be precisely reproduced by a model in which refraction occurs on two distinct lens planes. These data strongly favour a model in which grazing-incidence refraction instead of diffraction off turbulent structures is the primary source of pulsar scattering. This model can reproduce the parameters of the observed diffractive scintillation with an accuracy at the percent level. Comparison with new VLBI proper motion results in a direct measure of the ionized interstellar medium (ISM) screen transverse velocity. The results are consistent with ISM velocities local to the PSR 0834+06 sight-line (through the Galaxy). The simple 1-D structure of the lenses opens up the possibility of using interstellar lenses as precision probes for pulsar lens mapping, precision transverse motions in the ISM, and new opportunities for removing scattering to improve pulsar timing. We describe the parameters and observables of this double screen system. While relative screen distances can in principle be accurately determined, a global conformal distance degeneracy exists that allows a rescaling of the absolute distance scale. For PSR B0834+06, we present VLBI astrometry results that provide (for the first time) a direct measurement of the distance of the pulsar. For most of the recycled millisecond pulsars that are the targets of precision timing observations, the targets where independent distance measurements are not available. The degeneracy presented in the lens modelling could be broken if the pulsar resides in a binary system.

  4. BeppoSAX observations of XTE J1946+274

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doroshenko, R.; Santangelo, A.; Doroshenko, V.; Piraino, S.

    2017-03-01

    We report on the BeppoSAX monitoring of a giant outburst of the transient X-ray pulsar XTE J1946+274 in 1998. The source was detected with a flux of 4 × 10-9 erg cm-2 s-1 (in 0.1-120 keV range). The broadband spectrum, typical for accreting pulsars, is well described by a cutoff power law with a cyclotron resonance scattering feature (CRSF) at 38 keV. This value is consistent with earlier reports based on the observations with Suzaku at factor of ten lower luminosity, which implies that the feature is formed close to the neutron star surface rather than in the accretion column. Pulsations with P 15.82 s were observed up to 70 keV. The pulse profile strongly depends on energy and is characterised by a "soft" and a "hard" peaks shifted by half period, which suggests a strong phase dependence of the spectrum, and that two components with roughly orthogonal beam patterns are responsible for the observed pulse shape. This conclusion is supported by the fact that the CRSF, despite its relatively high energy, is only detected in the spectrum of the soft peak of the pulse profile. Along with the absence of correlation of the line energy with luminosity, this could be explained in the framework of the recently proposed "reflection" model for CRSF formation. However more detailed modelling of both line and continuum formation are required to confirm this interpretation.

  5. A digital pulsar backend based on FPGA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Jin-Tao; Chen, Lan; Han, Jin-Lin; Esamdin, Ali; Wu, Ya-Jun; Li, Zhi-Xuan; Hao, Long-Fei; Zhang, Xiu-Zhong

    2017-01-01

    A digital pulsar backend based on a Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) is developed. It is designed for incoherent de-dispersion of pulsar observations and has a maximum bandwidth of 512 MHz. The channel bandwidth is fixed to 1 MHz, and the highest time resolution is 10 {{μ }} s. Testing observations were carried out using the Urumqi 25-m telescope administered by Xinjiang Astronomical Observatory and the Kunming 40-m telescope administered by Yunnan Observatories, targeting PSR J0332+5434 in the L band and PSR J0437–4715 in the S band, respectively. The successful observation of PSR J0437–4715 demonstrates its ability to observe millisecond pulsars.

  6. Pulsar Animation

    NASA Video Gallery

    Pulsars are thought to emit relatively narrow radio beams, shown as green in this animation. If these beams don't sweep toward Earth, astronomers cannot detect the radio signals. Pulsar gamma-ray e...

  7. Application of the Gaussian mixture model in pulsar astronomy - pulsar classification and candidates ranking for the Fermi 2FGL catalogue

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, K. J.; Guillemot, L.; Yue, Y. L.; Kramer, M.; Champion, D. J.

    2012-08-01

    Machine learning, algorithms designed to extract empirical knowledge from data, can be used to classify data, which is one of the most common tasks in observational astronomy. In this paper, we focus on Bayesian data classification algorithms using the Gaussian mixture model and show two applications in pulsar astronomy. After reviewing the Gaussian mixture model and the related expectation-maximization algorithm, we present a data classification method using the Neyman-Pearson test. To demonstrate the method, we apply the algorithm to two classification problems. First, it is applied to the well-known period-period derivative diagram, where we find that the pulsar distribution can be modelled with six Gaussian clusters, with two clusters for millisecond pulsars (recycled pulsars) and the rest for normal pulsars. From this distribution, we derive an empirical definition for millisecond pulsars as {P\\dot;}/{10-17}≤3.23({P}/{100ms})-2.34. The two millisecond pulsar clusters may have different evolutionary origins, since the companion stars to these pulsars in the two clusters show different chemical compositions. Four clusters are found for normal pulsars. Possible implications for these clusters are also discussed. Our second example is to calculate the likelihood of unidentified Fermi point sources being pulsars and rank them accordingly. In the ranked point-source list, the top 5 per cent sources contain 50 per cent known pulsars, the top 50 per cent contain 99 per cent known pulsars and no known active galaxy (the other major population) appears in the top 6 per cent. Such a ranked list can be used to help the future follow-up observations for finding pulsars in unidentified Fermi point sources.

  8. Searching for Pulsars with the SKA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ransom, Scott

    2007-12-01

    One of the SKA Key Science Projects involves "strong field tests of gravity using pulsars and black holes". However, we currently don't know of any pulsar - black hole binaries! Another component of this key science project involves the detection of nano-Hertz gravitational waves using an ensemble of many tens or hundreds of very high-precision millisecond pulsars, many of which are also, as yet, unknown. It is clear that some of the first major pulsar projects conducted with early phases of the SKA will involve large-area surveys. Given the likely nature of the mid-frequency-range SKA (i.e. large numbers of small dishes), such surveys will be incredibly challenging, and will require extremely large data and computational rates. However, the technical issues are likely surmountable, and the resulting surveys will find thousands of new pulsars, many of which will be useful for these and other basic physics tests.

  9. Arecibo pulsar survey using ALFA. III. Precursor survey and population synthesis

    SciTech Connect

    Swiggum, J. K.; Lorimer, D. R.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Bates, S. D.; Senty, T. R.; Champion, D. J.; Lazarus, P.; Ransom, S. M.; Brazier, A.; Chatterjee, S.; Cordes, J. M.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Nice, D. J.; Ellis, J.; Allen, B.; Bhat, N. D. R.; Bogdanov, S.; Camilo, F.; Crawford, F.; Deneva, J. S.; and others

    2014-06-01

    The Pulsar Arecibo L-band Feed Array (PALFA) Survey uses the ALFA 7-beam receiver to search both inner and outer Galactic sectors visible from Arecibo (32° ≲ ℓ ≲ 77° and 168° ≲ ℓ ≲ 214°) close to the Galactic plane (|b| ≲ 5°) for pulsars. The PALFA survey is sensitive to sources fainter and more distant than have previously been seen because of Arecibo's unrivaled sensitivity. In this paper we detail a precursor survey of this region with PALFA, which observed a subset of the full region (slightly more restrictive in ℓ and |b| ≲ 1°) and detected 45 pulsars. Detections included 1 known millisecond pulsar and 11 previously unknown, long-period pulsars. In the surveyed part of the sky that overlaps with the Parkes Multibeam Pulsar Survey (36° ≲ ℓ ≲ 50°), PALFA is probing deeper than the Parkes survey, with four discoveries in this region. For both Galactic millisecond and normal pulsar populations, we compare the survey's detections with simulations to model these populations and, in particular, to estimate the number of observable pulsars in the Galaxy. We place 95% confidence intervals of 82,000 to 143,000 on the number of detectable normal pulsars and 9000 to 100,000 on the number of detectable millisecond pulsars in the Galactic disk. These are consistent with previous estimates. Given the most likely population size in each case (107,000 and 15,000 for normal and millisecond pulsars, respectively), we extend survey detection simulations to predict that, when complete, the full PALFA survey should have detected 1000{sub −230}{sup +330} normal pulsars and 30{sub −20}{sup +200} millisecond pulsars. Identical estimation techniques predict that 490{sub −115}{sup +160} normal pulsars and 12{sub −5}{sup +70} millisecond pulsars would be detected by the beginning of 2014; at the time, the PALFA survey had detected 283 normal pulsars and 31 millisecond pulsars, respectively. We attribute the deficiency in normal pulsar detections

  10. Formation of Planets around Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banit, M.; Ruderman, M. A.; Shaham, J.; Applegate, J. H.

    1993-10-01

    Pulse arrival-time delays PSR 1257+ 12 suggest the existence of at least two planets in nearly circular orbits around it. In this paper we discuss different scenarios for the formation of planets in circular orbits around pulsars. Among other topics, we look in some detail at wind emission mechanisms that are particularly relevant to the process of evaporation of planets around pulsars and discuss their possible role in orbit circularization. We conclude that the formation of such planets may occur in a very late phase of low-mass X-ray binary (LMXB) or binary millisecond pulsar (BMP) evolution. Evaporation of the companion star in these phases supplies matter to a circumbinary "excretion" disk in which the physical conditions, similar to those appropriate for the BMP 1957+20 system, may allow the formation of planets like those observed in PSR 1257+12.

  11. EINSTEIN-HOME DISCOVERY OF 24 PULSARS IN THE PARKES MULTI-BEAM PULSAR SURVEY

    SciTech Connect

    Knispel, B.; Kim, H.; Allen, B.; Aulbert, C.; Bock, O.; Eggenstein, H.-B.; Fehrmann, H.; Machenschalk, B.; Eatough, R. P.; Keane, E. F.; Kramer, M.; Anderson, D.; Crawford, F.; Rastawicki, D.; Hammer, D.; Papa, M. A.; Siemens, X.; Lyne, A. G.; Miller, R. B.; Sarkissian, J.; and others

    2013-09-10

    We have conducted a new search for radio pulsars in compact binary systems in the Parkes multi-beam pulsar survey (PMPS) data, employing novel methods to remove the Doppler modulation from binary motion. This has yielded unparalleled sensitivity to pulsars in compact binaries. The required computation time of Almost-Equal-To 17, 000 CPU core years was provided by the distributed volunteer computing project Einstein-Home, which has a sustained computing power of about 1 PFlop s{sup -1}. We discovered 24 new pulsars in our search, 18 of which were isolated pulsars, and 6 were members of binary systems. Despite the wide filterbank channels and relatively slow sampling time of the PMPS data, we found pulsars with very large ratios of dispersion measure (DM) to spin period. Among those is PSR J1748-3009, the millisecond pulsar with the highest known DM ( Almost-Equal-To 420 pc cm{sup -3}). We also discovered PSR J1840-0643, which is in a binary system with an orbital period of 937 days, the fourth largest known. The new pulsar J1750-2536 likely belongs to the rare class of intermediate-mass binary pulsars. Three of the isolated pulsars show long-term nulling or intermittency in their emission, further increasing this growing family. Our discoveries demonstrate the value of distributed volunteer computing for data-driven astronomy and the importance of applying new analysis methods to extensively searched data.

  12. Serendipitous Detections of XTE J1906+09 with the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson, Colleen A.; Finger, Mark H.; Gogus, Ersin; Woods, Peter M.; Whitaker, Ann F. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    In 1996 during Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) observations of SCR 1900+14, the 89-second X-ray pulsar XTE J1906+09 was discovered. As a result of monitoring campaigns of SGR 1900+14, XTE J1906+09 was also monitored regularly in 1996 September, 1998 May-June, 1998 August-1999 July, and 2000 March-2001 January. A frequency grid search of these observations resulted in detections of only the two previously reported outbursts in 1996 September and 1998 August-September. The non-detection of XTE J1906+09 in most observations indicates that it is a transient X-ray pulsar and therefore likely has a Be star companion, Pulse timing analysis of the second outburst revealed a sinusoidal signature in the pulse frequencies that is likely produced by periastron passage in a long period, eccentric, orbit. During the second outburst, the pulse shape changed with increasing intensity, Low intensity pulse profiles from the second outburst are consistent with profiles from the fainter first outburst. Energy dependent pulse shape variations were seen in both outbursts. Pulse phase spectroscopy was used to quantify these variations. The phase averaged spectrum, using the pulse minimum spectrum as the background spectrum to eliminate effects from SGR 1900+14 and the galactic ridge, was well fitted by an absorbed power law with a high energy cutoff with column density N(sub H) = (6 +/- 1) x 10(exp 22) cm(sup -2), photon index = 1.01 +/- 0.08, cutoff energy E(sub cut) = 11 +/- 1 keV, and folding energy E(sub fold) = 19 +/- 4 keV.

  13. The Future of Pulsar Timing Arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stappers, B. W.

    Significant advances have been made in the sensitivity of pulsar timing arrays for the detection of gravitational waves in the last decade. This presentation looked forward to consider where the development of pulsar timing arrays might go as we head towards the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) and then beyond. I reviewed where progress needs to be made in terms of sensitivity to gravitational waves, including improvements to existing observing approaches and new telescopes such as MeerKAT and FAST and techniques like LEAP. The dramatic increase in the number of millisecond pulsars is presented and how that might affect progress towards a first detection is discussed. Developments in analytic techniques were also discussed, including the removal of interstellar medium effects, red noise and pulse profile variations. A summary of how the SKA can contribute through an increased millisecond pulsar population and pulsar timing sensitivity was presented. With the likelihood that the SKA will implement some form of Key Science Project approach, some ideas of how will this affect how the International Pulsar Timing Array effort and how it might evolve into a KSP were discussed.

  14. A novel mechanism for creating double pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sigurdsson, Steinn; Hernquist, Lars

    1992-01-01

    Simulations of encounters between pairs of hard binaries, each containing a neutron star and a main-sequence star, reveal a new formation mechanism for double pulsars in dense cores of globular clusters. In many cases, the two normal stars are disrupted to form a common envelope around the pair of neutron stars, both of which will be spun up to become millisecond pulsars. We predict that a new class of pulsars, double millisecond pulsars, will be discovered in the cores of dense globular clusters. The genesis proceeds through a short-lived double-core common envelope phase, with the envelope ejected in a fast wind. It is possible that the progenitor may also undergo a double X-ray binary phase. Any circular, short-period double pulsar found in the galaxy would necessarily come from disrupted disk clusters, unlike Hulse-Taylor class pulsars or low-mass X-ray binaries which may be ejected from clusters or formed in the galaxy.

  15. PULSAR OBSERVATIONS USING THE FIRST STATION OF THE LONG WAVELENGTH ARRAY AND THE LWA PULSAR DATA ARCHIVE

    SciTech Connect

    Stovall, K.; Dowell, J.; Eftekhari, T.; McCrackan, M.; Schinzel, F. K.; Taylor, G. B.; Ray, P. S.; Blythe, J.; Garcia, A.; Lazio, T. J. W.

    2015-08-01

    We present initial pulsar results from the first station of the Long Wavelength Array (LWA1) obtained during the commissioning period of LWA1 and in early science results. We present detections of periodic emission from 44 previously known pulsars, including 3 millisecond pulsars. The effects of the interstellar medium (ISM) on pulsar emission are significantly enhanced at the low frequencies of the LWA1 band (10–88 MHz), making LWA1 a very sensitive instrument for characterizing changes in the dispersion measure (DM) and other effects from the ISM. Pulsars also often have significant evolution in their pulse profile at low frequency and a break in their spectral index. We report DM measurements for 44 pulsars, mean flux density measurements for 36 pulsars, and multi-frequency component spacing and widths for 15 pulsars with more than one profile component. For 27 pulsars, we report spectral index measurements within our frequency range. We also introduce the LWA1 Pulsar Data Archive, which stores reduced data products from LWA1 pulsar observations. Reduced data products for the observations presented here can be found in the archive. Reduced data products from future LWA1 pulsar observations will also be made available through the archive.

  16. Observing peculiar γ-ray pulsars with AGILE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pilia, M.; Pellizzoni, A.

    2011-08-01

    The AGILE γ-ray satellite provides large sky exposure levels (>=109 cm2 s per year on the Galactic Plane) with sensitivity peaking at E ~100 MeV where the bulk of pulsar energy output is typically released. Its ~1 μs absolute time tagging capability makes it perfectly suited for the study of γ-ray pulsars. AGILE collected a large number of γ-ray photons from EGRET pulsars (>=40,000 pulsed counts for Vela) in two years of observations unveiling new interesting features at sub-millisecond level in the pulsars' high-energy light-curves, γ-ray emission from pulsar glitches and Pulsar Wind Nebulae. AGILE detected about 20 nearby and energetic pulsars with good confidence through timing and/or spatial analysis. Among the newcomers we find pulsars with very high rotational energy losses, such as the remarkable PSR B1509-58 with a magnetic field in excess of 1013 Gauss, and PSR J2229+6114 providing a reliable identification for the previously unidentified EGRET source 3EG2227+6122. Moreover, the powerful millisecond pulsar B1821-24, in the globular cluster M28, is detected during a fraction of the observations.

  17. The Guitar Nebula, Bow Shocks From High Velocity Pulsars, and Companions of Recycled Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lundgren, S. C.; Cordes, J. M.; Romani, R. W.

    1992-12-01

    We report results of optical studies of neutron star interactions with companion objects and the surrounding medium. In Hα observations of 11 high velocity, high spindown energy pulsars we have discovered one spectacular bow shock nebula, the Guitar Nebula, produced by the motion of the pulsar, PSR 2224+65, through partially neutral gas. One other pulsar, PSR 0136+57, has a faint feature near the pulsar position with a nonstellar morphology. We discuss the possibility that this is another shock and give upper limits on shock emission for the rest of the pulsars. Further, we consider possible scaling of shock emission with pulsar spindown energy and velocity, and detectability of shocks in other pulsars. Shocks may even reveal the existence of neutron stars not detectable as pulsars due to beaming or lack of pulsed radio emission. Our observations of several binary millisecond pulsars show some intriquing counterparts in some cases and allow strong limits to be placed on the magnitude of any counterparts in others. In pulsars 1534+12 and 1953+29 optical counterparts near the pulsar position are most likely chance coincidence with foreground stars. We imaged PSR 1257+12 in the hope of seeing the remnants of the disk which resulted in formation of planets or another pulsar wind driven shock nebula. We place upper limits on optical emission from nebulosity in the vicinity of the pulsar. This work was supported by grants from NSF, NASA and the National Astronomy and Ionosphere Center which operates Arecibo Observatory under contract with the NSF.

  18. Monitoring The Crab Pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rots, Arnold H.; Swank, Jean (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The monitoring of the X-ray pulses from the Crab pulsar is still ongoing at the time of this writing, and we hope to be able to continue the campaign for the life of the XTE mission. We have established beyond all doubt that: (1) the X-ray main pulse leads the radio pulse by approximately 300 microseconds, (2) this phase lag is constant and not influenced by glitches, (3) this lag does not depend on X-ray energy, (4) the relative phase of the two X-ray pulses does not vary, and (5) the spectral indices of primary, secondary, and inter-pulse are distinct and constant. At this time we are investigating whether the radio timing ephemeris can be replaced by an x-ray ephemeris and whether any long-time timing ephemeris can be established. If so, it would enable use to study variations in pulse arrival times at a longer time scales. Such a study is easier in x-rays than at radio wavelengths since the dispersion measure plays no role. These results were reported at the 2000 HEAD Meeting in Honolulu, HI. Travel was paid partly out of this grant. The remainder was applied toward the acquisition of a laptop computer that allows independent and fast analysis of all monitoring observations.

  19. THE TIMING OF NINE GLOBULAR CLUSTER PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Lynch, Ryan S.; Freire, Paulo C. C.; Ransom, Scott M.; Jacoby, Bryan A. E-mail: pfreire@mpifr-bonn.mpg.de E-mail: bryan.jacoby@gmail.com

    2012-02-01

    We have used the Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope to time nine previously known pulsars without published timing solutions in the globular clusters (GCs) M62, NGC 6544, and NGC 6624. We have full timing solutions that measure the spin, astrometric, and (where applicable) binary parameters for six of these pulsars. The remaining three pulsars (reported here for the first time) were not detected enough to establish solutions. We also report our timing solutions for five pulsars with previously published solutions, and find good agreement with other authors, except for PSR J1701-3006B in M62. Gas in this system is probably responsible for the discrepancy in orbital parameters, and we have been able to measure a change in the orbital period over the course of our observations. Among the pulsars with new solutions we find several binary pulsars with very low mass companions (members of the so-called 'black widow' class) and we are able to place constraints on the mass-to-light ratio in two clusters. We confirm that one of the pulsars in NGC 6624 is indeed a member of the rare class of non-recycled pulsars found in GCs. We have also measured the orbital precession and Shapiro delay for a relativistic binary in NGC 6544. If we assume that the orbital precession can be described entirely by general relativity, which is likely, we are able to measure the total system mass (2.57190(73) M{sub Sun }) and companion mass (1.2064(20) M{sub Sun }), from which we derive the orbital inclination (sin i = 0.9956(14)) and the pulsar mass (1.3655(21) M{sub Sun }), the most precise such measurement ever obtained for a millisecond pulsar. The companion is the most massive known around a fully recycled pulsar.

  20. Long-Term Timing of Globular Cluster Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roi Smith, Sergio; Lynch, Ryan S.

    2017-01-01

    Pulsar timing is a powerful astrophysical tool that allows us to study both pulsars and their environment. Timing models provide information about the pulsar itself, including mass, position, and orbital parameters for pulsars in binary systems. Timing models also provide information about the pulsar’s neighborhood and about the interstellar medium (ISM) between the pulsar and the Earth. We present the results of timing two millisecond globular cluster pulsars over five years, as well as steps involved in preparing the data for use in the timing model. Data was obtained using the Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) observing at 1.5 GHz between 2011 and 2015. Here, a description of the data processing procedure is given, and timing results including dispersion measure and higher order rotational period derivatives are discussed.

  1. The High Time Resolution Universe Pulsar Survey - I. System configuration and initial discoveries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keith, M. J.; Jameson, A.; van Straten, W.; Bailes, M.; Johnston, S.; Kramer, M.; Possenti, A.; Bates, S. D.; Bhat, N. D. R.; Burgay, M.; Burke-Spolaor, S.; D'Amico, N.; Levin, L.; McMahon, Peter L.; Milia, S.; Stappers, B. W.

    2010-12-01

    We have embarked on a survey for pulsars and fast transients using the 13-beam multibeam receiver on the Parkes Radio Telescope. Installation of a digital backend allows us to record 400 MHz of bandwidth for each beam, split into 1024 channels and sampled every 64 μs. Limits of the receiver package restrict us to a 340 MHz observing band centred at 1352 MHz. The factor of 8 improvement in frequency resolution over previous multibeam surveys allows us to probe deeper into the Galactic plane for short-duration signals such as the pulses from millisecond pulsars. We plan to survey the entire southern sky in 42641 pointings, split into low, mid and high Galactic latitude regions, with integration times of 4200, 540 and 270 s, respectively. Simulations suggest that we will discover 400 pulsars, of which 75 will be millisecond pulsars. With ~30 per cent of the mid-latitude survey complete, we have redetected 223 previously known pulsars and discovered 27 pulsars, five of which are millisecond pulsars. The newly discovered millisecond pulsars tend to have larger dispersion measures than those discovered in previous surveys, as expected from the improved time and frequency resolution of our instrument.

  2. The gamma-ray pulsar population of globular clusters: Implications for the GeV excess

    SciTech Connect

    Hooper, Dan; Linden, Tim

    2016-08-09

    In this study, it has been suggested that the GeV excess, observed from the region surrounding the Galactic Center, might originate from a population of millisecond pulsars that formed in globular clusters. With this in mind, we employ the publicly available Fermi data to study the gamma-ray emission from 157 globular clusters, identifying a statistically significant signal from 25 of these sources (ten of which are not found in existing gamma-ray catalogs). We combine these observations with the predicted pulsar formation rate based on the stellar encounter rate of each globular cluster to constrain the gamma-ray luminosity function of millisecond pulsars in the Milky Way's globular cluster system. We find that this pulsar population exhibits a luminosity function that is quite similar to those millisecond pulsars observed in the field of the Milky Way (i.e. the thick disk). After pulsars are expelled from a globular cluster, however, they continue to lose rotational kinetic energy and become less luminous, causing their luminosity function to depart from the steady-state distribution. Using this luminosity function and a model for the globular cluster disruption rate, we show that millisecond pulsars born in globular clusters can account for only a few percent or less of the observed GeV excess. Among other challenges, scenarios in which the entire GeV excess is generated from such pulsars are in conflict with the observed mass of the Milky Way's Central Stellar Cluster.

  3. The gamma-ray pulsar population of globular clusters: implications for the GeV excess

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hooper, Dan; Linden, Tim

    2016-08-01

    It has been suggested that the GeV excess, observed from the region surrounding the Galactic Center, might originate from a population of millisecond pulsars that formed in globular clusters. With this in mind, we employ the publicly available Fermi data to study the gamma-ray emission from 157 globular clusters, identifying a statistically significant signal from 25 of these sources (ten of which are not found in existing gamma-ray catalogs). We combine these observations with the predicted pulsar formation rate based on the stellar encounter rate of each globular cluster to constrain the gamma-ray luminosity function of millisecond pulsars in the Milky Way's globular cluster system. We find that this pulsar population exhibits a luminosity function that is quite similar to those millisecond pulsars observed in the field of the Milky Way (i.e. the thick disk). After pulsars are expelled from a globular cluster, however, they continue to lose rotational kinetic energy and become less luminous, causing their luminosity function to depart from the steady-state distribution. Using this luminosity function and a model for the globular cluster disruption rate, we show that millisecond pulsars born in globular clusters can account for only a few percent or less of the observed GeV excess. Among other challenges, scenarios in which the entire GeV excess is generated from such pulsars are in conflict with the observed mass of the Milky Way's Central Stellar Cluster.

  4. Detecting dark matter with imploding pulsars in the galactic center.

    PubMed

    Bramante, Joseph; Linden, Tim

    2014-11-07

    The paucity of old millisecond pulsars observed at the galactic center of the Milky Way could be the result of dark matter accumulating in and destroying neutron stars. In regions of high dark matter density, dark matter clumped in a pulsar can exceed the Schwarzschild limit and collapse into a natal black hole which destroys the pulsar. We examine what dark matter models are consistent with this hypothesis and find regions of parameter space where dark matter accumulation can significantly degrade the neutron star population within the galactic center while remaining consistent with observations of old millisecond pulsars in globular clusters and near the solar position. We identify what dark matter couplings and masses might cause a young pulsar at the galactic center to unexpectedly extinguish. Finally, we find that pulsar collapse age scales inversely with the dark matter density and linearly with the dark matter velocity dispersion. This implies that maximum pulsar age is spatially dependent on position within the dark matter halo of the Milky Way. In turn, this pulsar age spatial dependence will be dark matter model dependent.

  5. THE PECULIAR PULSAR POPULATION OF THE CENTRAL PARSEC

    SciTech Connect

    Dexter, Jason; O'Leary, Ryan M. E-mail: oleary@berkeley.edu

    2014-03-01

    Pulsars orbiting the Galactic center black hole, Sgr A*, would be potential probes of its mass, distance, and spin, and may even be used to test general relativity. Despite predictions of large populations of both ordinary and millisecond pulsars in the Galactic center, none have been detected within 25 pc by deep radio surveys. One explanation has been that hyperstrong temporal scattering prevents pulsar detections, but the recent discovery of radio pulsations from a highly magnetized neutron star (magnetar) within 0.1 pc shows that the temporal scattering is much weaker than predicted. We argue that an intrinsic deficit in the ordinary pulsar population is the most likely reason for the lack of detections to date: a ''missing pulsar problem'' in the Galactic center. In contrast, we show that the discovery of a single magnetar implies efficient magnetar formation in the region. If the massive stars in the central parsec form magnetars rather than ordinary pulsars, their short lifetimes could explain the missing pulsars. Efficient magnetar formation could be caused by strongly magnetized progenitors, or could be further evidence of a top-heavy initial mass function. Furthermore, current high-frequency surveys should already be able to detect bright millisecond pulsars, given the measured degree of temporal scattering.

  6. Pulsar searches in nearby dwarf spheroidal galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rubio-Herrera, Eduardo; Maccarone, Thomas

    2013-03-01

    We have been undertaking a comprehensive survey for pulsars and fast radio transients in the dwarf spheroidal satellite galaxies of the Milky Way using the Green Bank Radio Telescope operating at a central frequency of 350 MHz. Our search pipeline allows the detection of periodical signals and single dispersed pulses and it is optimized to search for millisecond radio pulsars. Here we present preliminary results of the searches we have conducted in the Ursa Minoris, Draco and Leo I dwarf spheroidal satellite galaxies. Our searches have revealed no periodic signals but a few unconfirmed millisecond single pulses at various dispersion measures, possibly related to neutron stars. Detecting neutron stars in these systems can potentially help to test the existence of haloes of dark matter surrounding these systems as predicted by Dehnen & King (2006).

  7. Multi-wavelength analysis of young pulsars: an overview.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maritz, J. M.; Meintjes, P. J.; Buchner, S. J.

    Young pulsars emit a broad spectrum of radiation that range from radio to gamma ray energies. These pulsars are considered as rotation powered pulsars that spin rapidly and are strongly magnetized. Following the discovery of pulsars nearly four decades ago, the population of known pulsars already reached a number of roughly two thousand. This known population of pulsars includes both millisecond and normal pulsars that were discovered by several telescopes. We analyze both HartRAO radio data and Fermi gamma ray data of the Vela pulsar. We also explore a proposed method of probing the electron column density of the instellar gas through analyzing the gamma ray diffuse data associated with the Fermi two-year observation. This paper serves as an overview of gamma ray and radio timing analysis of bright young pulsars with respect to the use of open source timing analysis tools (Tempo2, Psrchive, Enrico and the Fermi tools). We reason that the multi-wavelength picture of pulsars can help clarify questions regarding the origin of pulsed radiation emission mechanisms in several energy bands, but that radio observations will prove adequate for timing noise analysis, given the accurate and long radio data sets. The process of identifying gravitational waves in timing data, rests on gaining a deeper insight into the timing noise phenomena.

  8. The second fermi large area telescope catalog of gamma-ray pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Abdo, A. A.; Ajello, M.; Allafort, A.; Baldini, L.; Ballet, J.; Barbiellini, G.; Baring, M. G.; Bastieri, D.; Belfiore, A.; Bellazzini, R.; Bhattacharyya, B.; Bissaldi, E.; Bloom, E. D.; Bonamente, E.; Bottacini, E.; Brandt, T. J.; Bregeon, J.; Brigida, M.; Bruel, P.; Buehler, R.; Burgay, M.; Burnett, T. H.; Busetto, G.; Buson, S.; Caliandro, G. A.; Cameron, R. A.; Camilo, F.; Caraveo, P. A.; Casandjian, J. M.; Cecchi, C.; Çelik, Ö.; Charles, E.; Chaty, S.; Chaves, R. C. G.; Chekhtman, A.; Chen, A. W.; Chiang, J.; Chiaro, G.; Ciprini, S.; Claus, R.; Cognard, I.; Cohen-Tanugi, J.; Cominsky, L. R.; Conrad, J.; Cutini, S.; D'Ammando, F.; de Angelis, A.; DeCesar, M. E.; De Luca, A.; den Hartog, P. R.; de Palma, F.; Dermer, C. D.; Desvignes, G.; Digel, S. W.; Di Venere, L.; Drell, P. S.; Drlica-Wagner, A.; Dubois, R.; Dumora, D.; Espinoza, C. M.; Falletti, L.; Favuzzi, C.; Ferrara, E. C.; Focke, W. B.; Franckowiak, A.; Freire, P. C. C.; Funk, S.; Fusco, P.; Gargano, F.; Gasparrini, D.; Germani, S.; Giglietto, N.; Giommi, P.; Giordano, F.; Giroletti, M.; Glanzman, T.; Godfrey, G.; Gotthelf, E. V.; Grenier, I. A.; Grondin, M. -H.; Grove, J. E.; Guillemot, L.; Guiriec, S.; Hadasch, D.; Hanabata, Y.; Harding, A. K.; Hayashida, M.; Hays, E.; Hessels, J.; Hewitt, J.; Hill, A. B.; Horan, D.; Hou, X.; Hughes, R. E.; Jackson, M. S.; Janssen, G. H.; Jogler, T.; Jóhannesson, G.; Johnson, R. P.; Johnson, A. S.; Johnson, T. J.; Johnson, W. N.; Johnston, S.; Kamae, T.; Kataoka, J.; Keith, M.; Kerr, M.; Knödlseder, J.; Kramer, M.; Kuss, M.; Lande, J.; Larsson, S.; Latronico, L.; Lemoine-Goumard, M.; Longo, F.; Loparco, F.; Lovellette, M. N.; Lubrano, P.; Lyne, A. G.; Manchester, R. N.; Marelli, M.; Massaro, F.; Mayer, M.; Mazziotta, M. N.; McEnery, J. E.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Mehault, J.; Michelson, P. F.; Mignani, R. P.; Mitthumsiri, W.; Mizuno, T.; Moiseev, A. A.; Monzani, M. E.; Morselli, A.; Moskalenko, I. V.; Murgia, S.; Nakamori, T.; Nemmen, R.; Nuss, E.; Ohno, M.; Ohsugi, T.; Orienti, M.; Orlando, E.; Ormes, J. F.; Paneque, D.; Panetta, J. H.; Parent, D.; Perkins, J. S.; Pesce-Rollins, M.; Pierbattista, M.; Piron, F.; Pivato, G.; Pletsch, H. J.; Porter, T. A.; Possenti, A.; Rainò, S.; Rando, R.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Razzano, M.; Rea, N.; Reimer, A.; Reimer, O.; Renault, N.; Reposeur, T.; Ritz, S.; Romani, R. W.; Roth, M.; Rousseau, R.; Roy, J.; Ruan, J.; Sartori, A.; Saz Parkinson, P. M.; Scargle, J. D.; Schulz, A.; Sgrò, C.; Shannon, R.; Siskind, E. J.; Smith, D. A.; Spandre, G.; Spinelli, P.; Stappers, B. W.; Strong, A. W.; Suson, D. J.; Takahashi, H.; Thayer, J. G.; Thayer, J. B.; Theureau, G.; Thompson, D. J.; Thorsett, S. E.; Tibaldo, L.; Tibolla, O.; Tinivella, M.; Torres, D. F.; Tosti, G.; Troja, E.; Uchiyama, Y.; Usher, T. L.; Vandenbroucke, J.; Vasileiou, V.; Venter, C.; Vianello, G.; Vitale, V.; Wang, N.; Weltevrede, P.; Winer, B. L.; Wolff, M. T.; Wood, D. L.; Wood, K. S.; Wood, M.; Yang, Z.

    2013-09-19

    This catalog summarizes 117 high-confidence ≥0.1 GeV gamma-ray pulsar detections using three years of data acquired by the Large Area Telescope (LAT) on the Fermi satellite. Half are neutron stars discovered using LAT data through periodicity searches in gamma-ray and radio data around LAT unassociated source positions. The 117 pulsars are evenly divided into three groups: millisecond pulsars, young radio-loud pulsars, and young radio-quiet pulsars. We characterize the pulse profiles and energy spectra and derive luminosities when distance information exists. Spectral analysis of the off-peak phase intervals indicates probable pulsar wind nebula emission for four pulsars, and off-peak magnetospheric emission for several young and millisecond pulsars. We compare the gamma-ray properties with those in the radio, optical, and X-ray bands. We provide flux limits for pulsars with no observed gamma-ray emission, highlighting a small number of gamma-faint, radio-loud pulsars. The large, varied gamma-ray pulsar sample constrains emission models. Fermi's selection biases complement those of radio surveys, enhancing comparisons with predicted population distributions.

  9. The Second Fermi Large Area Telescope Catalog of Gamma-Ray Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdo, A. A.; Ajello, M.; Allafort, A.; Baldini, L.; Ballet, J.; Barbiellini, G.; Baring, M. G.; Bastieri, D.; Belfiore, A.; Bellazzini, R.; Bhattacharyya, B.; Bissaldi, E.; Bloom, E. D.; Bonamente, E.; Bottacini, E.; Brandt, T. J.; Bregeon, J.; Brigida, M.; Bruel, P.; Buehler, R.; Burgay, M.; Burnett, T. H.; Busetto, G.; Buson, S.; Caliandro, G. A.; Cameron, R. A.; Camilo, F.; Caraveo, P. A.; Casandjian, J. M.; Cecchi, C.; Çelik, Ö.; Charles, E.; Chaty, S.; Chaves, R. C. G.; Chekhtman, A.; Chen, A. W.; Chiang, J.; Chiaro, G.; Ciprini, S.; Claus, R.; Cognard, I.; Cohen-Tanugi, J.; Cominsky, L. R.; Conrad, J.; Cutini, S.; D'Ammando, F.; de Angelis, A.; DeCesar, M. E.; De Luca, A.; den Hartog, P. R.; de Palma, F.; Dermer, C. D.; Desvignes, G.; Digel, S. W.; Di Venere, L.; Drell, P. S.; Drlica-Wagner, A.; Dubois, R.; Dumora, D.; Espinoza, C. M.; Falletti, L.; Favuzzi, C.; Ferrara, E. C.; Focke, W. B.; Franckowiak, A.; Freire, P. C. C.; Funk, S.; Fusco, P.; Gargano, F.; Gasparrini, D.; Germani, S.; Giglietto, N.; Giommi, P.; Giordano, F.; Giroletti, M.; Glanzman, T.; Godfrey, G.; Gotthelf, E. V.; Grenier, I. A.; Grondin, M.-H.; Grove, J. E.; Guillemot, L.; Guiriec, S.; Hadasch, D.; Hanabata, Y.; Harding, A. K.; Hayashida, M.; Hays, E.; Hessels, J.; Hewitt, J.; Hill, A. B.; Horan, D.; Hou, X.; Hughes, R. E.; Jackson, M. S.; Janssen, G. H.; Jogler, T.; Jóhannesson, G.; Johnson, R. P.; Johnson, A. S.; Johnson, T. J.; Johnson, W. N.; Johnston, S.; Kamae, T.; Kataoka, J.; Keith, M.; Kerr, M.; Knödlseder, J.; Kramer, M.; Kuss, M.; Lande, J.; Larsson, S.; Latronico, L.; Lemoine-Goumard, M.; Longo, F.; Loparco, F.; Lovellette, M. N.; Lubrano, P.; Lyne, A. G.; Manchester, R. N.; Marelli, M.; Massaro, F.; Mayer, M.; Mazziotta, M. N.; McEnery, J. E.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Mehault, J.; Michelson, P. F.; Mignani, R. P.; Mitthumsiri, W.; Mizuno, T.; Moiseev, A. A.; Monzani, M. E.; Morselli, A.; Moskalenko, I. V.; Murgia, S.; Nakamori, T.; Nemmen, R.; Nuss, E.; Ohno, M.; Ohsugi, T.; Orienti, M.; Orlando, E.; Ormes, J. F.; Paneque, D.; Panetta, J. H.; Parent, D.; Perkins, J. S.; Pesce-Rollins, M.; Pierbattista, M.; Piron, F.; Pivato, G.; Pletsch, H. J.; Porter, T. A.; Possenti, A.; Rainò, S.; Rando, R.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Razzano, M.; Rea, N.; Reimer, A.; Reimer, O.; Renault, N.; Reposeur, T.; Ritz, S.; Romani, R. W.; Roth, M.; Rousseau, R.; Roy, J.; Ruan, J.; Sartori, A.; Saz Parkinson, P. M.; Scargle, J. D.; Schulz, A.; Sgrò, C.; Shannon, R.; Siskind, E. J.; Smith, D. A.; Spandre, G.; Spinelli, P.; Stappers, B. W.; Strong, A. W.; Suson, D. J.; Takahashi, H.; Thayer, J. G.; Thayer, J. B.; Theureau, G.; Thompson, D. J.; Thorsett, S. E.; Tibaldo, L.; Tibolla, O.; Tinivella, M.; Torres, D. F.; Tosti, G.; Troja, E.; Uchiyama, Y.; Usher, T. L.; Vandenbroucke, J.; Vasileiou, V.; Venter, C.; Vianello, G.; Vitale, V.; Wang, N.; Weltevrede, P.; Winer, B. L.; Wolff, M. T.; Wood, D. L.; Wood, K. S.; Wood, M.; Yang, Z.

    2013-10-01

    This catalog summarizes 117 high-confidence >=0.1 GeV gamma-ray pulsar detections using three years of data acquired by the Large Area Telescope (LAT) on the Fermi satellite. Half are neutron stars discovered using LAT data through periodicity searches in gamma-ray and radio data around LAT unassociated source positions. The 117 pulsars are evenly divided into three groups: millisecond pulsars, young radio-loud pulsars, and young radio-quiet pulsars. We characterize the pulse profiles and energy spectra and derive luminosities when distance information exists. Spectral analysis of the off-peak phase intervals indicates probable pulsar wind nebula emission for four pulsars, and off-peak magnetospheric emission for several young and millisecond pulsars. We compare the gamma-ray properties with those in the radio, optical, and X-ray bands. We provide flux limits for pulsars with no observed gamma-ray emission, highlighting a small number of gamma-faint, radio-loud pulsars. The large, varied gamma-ray pulsar sample constrains emission models. Fermi's selection biases complement those of radio surveys, enhancing comparisons with predicted population distributions.

  10. THE SECOND FERMI LARGE AREA TELESCOPE CATALOG OF GAMMA-RAY PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Abdo, A. A.; Ajello, M.; Allafort, A.; Bloom, E. D.; Bottacini, E.; Baldini, L.; Ballet, J.; Baring, M. G.; Bastieri, D.; Belfiore, A.; Bellazzini, R.; Bregeon, J.; Bhattacharyya, B.; Bissaldi, E.; Bonamente, E.; Brandt, T. J.; Brigida, M.; and others

    2013-10-01

    This catalog summarizes 117 high-confidence ≥0.1 GeV gamma-ray pulsar detections using three years of data acquired by the Large Area Telescope (LAT) on the Fermi satellite. Half are neutron stars discovered using LAT data through periodicity searches in gamma-ray and radio data around LAT unassociated source positions. The 117 pulsars are evenly divided into three groups: millisecond pulsars, young radio-loud pulsars, and young radio-quiet pulsars. We characterize the pulse profiles and energy spectra and derive luminosities when distance information exists. Spectral analysis of the off-peak phase intervals indicates probable pulsar wind nebula emission for four pulsars, and off-peak magnetospheric emission for several young and millisecond pulsars. We compare the gamma-ray properties with those in the radio, optical, and X-ray bands. We provide flux limits for pulsars with no observed gamma-ray emission, highlighting a small number of gamma-faint, radio-loud pulsars. The large, varied gamma-ray pulsar sample constrains emission models. Fermi's selection biases complement those of radio surveys, enhancing comparisons with predicted population distributions.

  11. The second FERMI large area telescope catalog of gamma-ray pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Abdo, A. A.; Ajello, M.; Allafort, A.; Baldini, L.; Ballet, J.; Barbiellini, G.; Baring, M. G.; Bastieri, D.; Belfiore, A.; Bellazzini, R.; Bhattacharyya, B.; Bissaldi, E.; Bloom, E. D.; Bonamente, E.; Bottacini, E.; Brandt, T. J.; Bregeon, J.; Brigida, M.; Bruel, P.; Buehler, R.; Burgay, M.; Burnett, T. H.; Busetto, G.; Buson, S.; Caliandro, G. A.; Cameron, R. A.; Camilo, F.; Caraveo, P. A.; Casandjian, J. M.; Cecchi, C.; Çelik, Ö.; Charles, E.; Chaty, S.; Chaves, R. C. G.; Chekhtman, A.; Chen, A. W.; Chiang, J.; Chiaro, G.; Ciprini, S.; Claus, R.; Cognard, I.; Cohen-Tanugi, J.; Cominsky, L. R.; Conrad, J.; Cutini, S.; D'Ammando, F.; de Angelis, A.; DeCesar, M. E.; De Luca, A.; den Hartog, P. R.; de Palma, F.; Dermer, C. D.; Desvignes, G.; Digel, S. W.; Di Venere, L.; Drell, P. S.; Drlica-Wagner, A.; Dubois, R.; Dumora, D.; Espinoza, C. M.; Falletti, L.; Favuzzi, C.; Ferrara, E. C.; Focke, W. B.; Franckowiak, A.; Freire, P. C. C.; Funk, S.; Fusco, P.; Gargano, F.; Gasparrini, D.; Germani, S.; Giglietto, N.; Giommi, P.; Giordano, F.; Giroletti, M.; Glanzman, T.; Godfrey, G.; Gotthelf, E. V.; Grenier, I. A.; Grondin, M. -H.; Grove, J. E.; Guillemot, L.; Guiriec, S.; Hadasch, D.; Hanabata, Y.; Harding, A. K.; Hayashida, M.; Hays, E.; Hessels, J.; Hewitt, J.; Hill, A. B.; Horan, D.; Hou, X.; Hughes, R. E.; Jackson, M. S.; Janssen, G. H.; Jogler, T.; Jóhannesson, G.; Johnson, R. P.; Johnson, A. S.; Johnson, T. J.; Johnson, W. N.; Johnston, S.; Kamae, T.; Kataoka, J.; Keith, M.; Kerr, M.; Knödlseder, J.; Kramer, M.; Kuss, M.; Lande, J.; Larsson, S.; Latronico, L.; Lemoine-Goumard, M.; Longo, F.; Loparco, F.; Lovellette, M. N.; Lubrano, P.; Lyne, A. G.; Manchester, R. N.; Marelli, M.; Massaro, F.; Mayer, M.; Mazziotta, M. N.; McEnery, J. E.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Mehault, J.; Michelson, P. F.; Mignani, R. P.; Mitthumsiri, W.; Mizuno, T.; Moiseev, A. A.; Monzani, M. E.; Morselli, A.; Moskalenko, I. V.; Murgia, S.; Nakamori, T.; Nemmen, R.; Nuss, E.; Ohno, M.; Ohsugi, T.; Orienti, M.; Orlando, E.; Ormes, J. F.; Paneque, D.; Panetta, J. H.; Parent, D.; Perkins, J. S.; Pesce-Rollins, M.; Pierbattista, M.; Piron, F.; Pivato, G.; Pletsch, H. J.; Porter, T. A.; Possenti, A.; Rainò, S.; Rando, R.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Razzano, M.; Rea, N.; Reimer, A.; Reimer, O.; Renault, N.; Reposeur, T.; Ritz, S.; Romani, R. W.; Roth, M.; Rousseau, R.; Roy, J.; Ruan, J.; Sartori, A.; Saz Parkinson, P. M.; Scargle, J. D.; Schulz, A.; Sgrò, C.; Shannon, R.; Siskind, E. J.; Smith, D. A.; Spandre, G.; Spinelli, P.; Stappers, B. W.; Strong, A. W.; Suson, D. J.; Takahashi, H.; Thayer, J. G.; Thayer, J. B.; Theureau, G.; Thompson, D. J.; Thorsett, S. E.; Tibaldo, L.; Tibolla, O.; Tinivella, M.; Torres, D. F.; Tosti, G.; Troja, E.; Uchiyama, Y.; Usher, T. L.; Vandenbroucke, J.; Vasileiou, V.; Venter, C.; Vianello, G.; Vitale, V.; Wang, N.; Weltevrede, P.; Winer, B. L.; Wolff, M. T.; Wood, D. L.; Wood, K. S.; Wood, M.; Yang, Z.

    2013-09-19

    This catalog summarizes 117 high-confidence ≥0.1 GeV gamma-ray pulsar detections using three years of data acquired by the Large Area Telescope (LAT) on the Fermi satellite. Half are neutron stars discovered using LAT data through periodicity searches in gamma-ray and radio data around LAT unassociated source positions. The 117 pulsars are evenly divided into three groups: millisecond pulsars, young radio-loud pulsars, and young radio-quiet pulsars. We characterize the pulse profiles and energy spectra and derive luminosities when distance information exists. Spectral analysis of the off-peak phase intervals indicates probable pulsar wind nebula emission for four pulsars, and off-peak magnetospheric emission for several young and millisecond pulsars. We compare the gamma-ray properties with those in the radio, optical, and X-ray bands. We provide flux limits for pulsars with no observed gamma-ray emission, highlighting a small number of gamma-faint, radio-loud pulsars. The large, varied gamma-ray pulsar sample constrains emission models. Fermi's selection biases complement those of radio surveys, enhancing comparisons with predicted population distributions.

  12. PEACE: pulsar evaluation algorithm for candidate extraction - a software package for post-analysis processing of pulsar survey candidates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, K. J.; Stovall, K.; Jenet, F. A.; Martinez, J.; Dartez, L. P.; Mata, A.; Lunsford, G.; Cohen, S.; Biwer, C. M.; Rohr, M.; Flanigan, J.; Walker, A.; Banaszak, S.; Allen, B.; Barr, E. D.; Bhat, N. D. R.; Bogdanov, S.; Brazier, A.; Camilo, F.; Champion, D. J.; Chatterjee, S.; Cordes, J.; Crawford, F.; Deneva, J.; Desvignes, G.; Ferdman, R. D.; Freire, P.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Karuppusamy, R.; Kaspi, V. M.; Knispel, B.; Kramer, M.; Lazarus, P.; Lynch, R.; Lyne, A.; McLaughlin, M.; Ransom, S.; Scholz, P.; Siemens, X.; Spitler, L.; Stairs, I.; Tan, M.; van Leeuwen, J.; Zhu, W. W.

    2013-07-01

    Modern radio pulsar surveys produce a large volume of prospective candidates, the majority of which are polluted by human-created radio frequency interference or other forms of noise. Typically, large numbers of candidates need to be visually inspected in order to determine if they are real pulsars. This process can be labour intensive. In this paper, we introduce an algorithm called Pulsar Evaluation Algorithm for Candidate Extraction (PEACE) which improves the efficiency of identifying pulsar signals. The algorithm ranks the candidates based on a score function. Unlike popular machine-learning-based algorithms, no prior training data sets are required. This algorithm has been applied to data from several large-scale radio pulsar surveys. Using the human-based ranking results generated by students in the Arecibo Remote Command Center programme, the statistical performance of PEACE was evaluated. It was found that PEACE ranked 68 per cent of the student-identified pulsars within the top 0.17 per cent of sorted candidates, 95 per cent within the top 0.34 per cent and 100 per cent within the top 3.7 per cent. This clearly demonstrates that PEACE significantly increases the pulsar identification rate by a factor of about 50 to 1000. To date, PEACE has been directly responsible for the discovery of 47 new pulsars, 5 of which are millisecond pulsars that may be useful for pulsar timing based gravitational-wave detection projects.

  13. Star Cluster Buzzing With Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-01-01

    A dense globular star cluster near the center of our Milky Way Galaxy holds a buzzing beehive of rapidly-spinning millisecond pulsars, according to astronomers who discovered 21 new pulsars in the cluster using the National Science Foundation's 100-meter Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia. The cluster, called Terzan 5, now holds the record for pulsars, with 24, including three known before the GBT observations. Pulsar Diagram Pulsar Diagram: Click on image for more detail. "We hit the jackpot when we looked at this cluster," said Scott Ransom, an astronomer at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in Charlottesville, VA. "Not only does this cluster have a lot of pulsars -- and we still expect to find more in it -- but the pulsars in it are very interesting. They include at least 13 in binary systems, two of which are eclipsing, and the four fastest-rotating pulsars known in any globular cluster, with the fastest two rotating nearly 600 times per second, roughly as fast as a household blender," Ransom added. Ransom and his colleagues reported their findings to the American Astronomical Society's meeting in San Diego, CA, and in the online journal Science Express. The star cluster's numerous pulsars are expected to yield a bonanza of new information about not only the pulsars themselves, but also about the dense stellar environment in which they reside and probably even about nuclear physics, according to the scientists. For example, preliminary measurements indicate that two of the pulsars are more massive than some theoretical models would allow. "All these exotic pulsars will keep us busy for years to come," said Jason Hessels, a Ph.D student at McGill University in Montreal. Globular clusters are dense agglomerations of up to millions of stars, all of which formed at about the same time. Pulsars are spinning, superdense neutron stars that whirl "lighthouse beams" of radio waves or light around as they spin. A neutron star is what is

  14. SUBARCSECOND LOCATION OF IGR J17480-2446 WITH ROSSI XTE

    SciTech Connect

    Riggio, A.; Burderi, L.; Egron, E.; Di Salvo, T.; D'Ai, A.; Iaria, R.; Robba, N. R.; Papitto, A.; Belloni, T.; Motta, S.; Floris, M.; Testa, V.; Menna, M. T.

    2012-07-20

    On 2010 October 13, the X-ray astronomical satellite Rossi XTE, during the observation of the newly discovered accretion powered X-ray pulsar IGR J17480-2446, detected a lunar occultation of the source. From knowledge of the lunar topography and Earth, Moon, and spacecraft ephemerides at the epoch of the event, we determined the source position with an accuracy of 40 mas (1{sigma} c.l.), which is interesting, given the very poor imaging capabilities of RXTE ({approx}1 Degree-Sign ). For the first time, using a non-imaging X-ray observatory, the position of an X-ray source with a subarcsecond accuracy is derived, demonstrating the neat capabilities of a technique that can be fruitfully applied to current and future X-ray missions.

  15. Imprints of relic gravitational waves on pulsar timing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tong, Ming-Lei; Ding, Yong-Heng; Zhao, Cheng-Shi; Gao, Feng; Yan, Bao-Rong; Yang, Ting-Gao; Gao, Yu-Ping

    2016-03-01

    Relic gravitational waves (RGWs), a background originating during inflation, would leave imprints on pulsar timing residuals. This makes RGWs an important source for detection of RGWs using the method of pulsar timing. In this paper, we discuss the effects of RGWs on single pulsar timing, and quantitatively analyze the timing residuals caused by RGWs with different model parameters. In principle, if the RGWs are strong enough today, they can be detected by timing a single millisecond pulsar with high precision after the intrinsic red noises in pulsar timing residuals are understood, even though simultaneously observing multiple millisecond pulsars is a more powerful technique for extracting gravitational wave signals. We correct the normalization of RGWs using observations of the cosmic microwave background (CMB), which leads to the amplitudes of RGWs being reduced by two orders of magnitude or so compared to our previous works. We obtained new constraints on RGWs using recent observations from the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array, employing the tensor-to-scalar ratio r = 0.2 due to the tensor-type polarization observations of CMB by BICEP2 as a reference value, even though its reliability has been brought into question. Moreover, the constraints on RGWs from CMB and Big Bang nucleosynthesis will also be discussed for comparison.

  16. MILLISECOND IMAGING OF RADIO TRANSIENTS WITH THE POCKET CORRELATOR

    SciTech Connect

    Law, C. J.; Backer, D. C.; Bower, G. C.; Gutierrez-Kraybill, C.; Williams, P. K. G.; Jones, G.; Barott, W. C.; Werthimer, D. E-mail: jones_gl@caltech.edu

    2011-11-20

    We demonstrate a signal-processing concept for imaging the sky at millisecond rates with radio interferometers. The 'Pocket Correlator' (PoCo) correlates the signals from multiple elements of a radio interferometer fast enough to image brief, dispersed pulses. By the nature of interferometry, a millisecond correlator functions like a large, single-dish telescope, but with improved survey speed, spatial localization, calibration, and interference rejection. To test the concept, we installed PoCo at the Allen Telescope Array (ATA) to search for dispersed pulses from the Crab pulsar, B0329+54, and M31 using total-power, visibility-based, and image-plane techniques. In 1.7 hr of observing, PoCo detected 191 giant pulses from the Crab pulsar brighter than a typical 5{sigma} sensitivity limit of 60 Jy over pulse widths of 3 ms. Roughly 40% of pulses from pulsar B0329+54 were detected by using novel visibility-based techniques. Observations of M31 constrain the rate of pulses brighter than 190 Jy in a three-degree region surrounding the galaxy to <4.3 hr{sup -1}. We calculate the computational demand of various visibility-based pulse search algorithms and demonstrate how compute clusters can help meet this demand. Larger implementations of the fast imaging concept will conduct blind searches for millisecond pulses in our Galaxy and beyond, providing a valuable probe of the interstellar/intergalactic media, discovering new kinds of radio transients, and localizing them to constrain models of their origin.

  17. Do the enigmatic ``Infrared-Faint Radio Sources'' include pulsars?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hobbs, George; Middelberg, Enno; Norris, Ray; Keith, Michael; Mao, Minnie; Champion, David

    2009-04-01

    The Australia Telescope Large Area Survey (ATLAS) team have surveyed seven square degrees of sky at 1.4GHz. During processing some unexpected infrared-faint radio sources (IFRS sources) were discovered. The nature of these sources is not understood, but it is possible that some of these sources may be pulsars within our own galaxy. We propose to observe the IFRS sources with steep spectral indices using standard search techniques to determine whether or not they are pulsars. A pulsar detection would 1) remove a subset of the IFRS sources from the ATLAS sample so they would not need to be observed with large optical/IR telescopes to find their hosts and 2) be intrinsically interesting as the pulsar would be a millisecond pulsar and/or have an extreme spatial velocity.

  18. DETECTING GRAVITATIONAL WAVE MEMORY WITH PULSAR TIMING

    SciTech Connect

    Cordes, J. M.; Jenet, F. A. E-mail: merlyn@phys.utb.edu

    2012-06-10

    We compare the detectability of gravitational bursts passing through the solar system with those passing near each millisecond pulsar in an N-pulsar timing array. The sensitivity to Earth-passing bursts can exploit the correlation expected in pulse arrival times while pulsar-passing bursts, though uncorrelated between objects, provide an N-fold increase in overall time baseline that can compensate for the lower sensitivity. Bursts with memory from mergers of supermassive black holes produce step functions in apparent spin frequency that are the easiest to detect in pulsar timing. We show that the burst rate and amplitude distribution, while strongly dependent on inadequately known cosmological evolution, may favor detection in the pulsar terms rather than the Earth timing perturbations. Any contamination of timing data by red spin noise makes burst detection more difficult because both signals grow with the length of the time data span T. Furthermore, the different bursts that could appear in one or more data sets of length T Almost-Equal-To 10 yr also affect the detectability of the gravitational wave stochastic background that, like spin noise, has a red power spectrum. A burst with memory is a worthwhile target in the timing of multiple pulsars in a globular cluster because it should produce a correlated signal with a time delay of less than about 10 years in some cases.

  19. THE PULSAR SEARCH COLLABORATORY: DISCOVERY AND TIMING OF FIVE NEW PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Rosen, R.; Swiggum, J.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Lorimer, D. R.; Yun, M.; Boyles, J.; Heatherly, S. A.; Scoles, S.; Lynch, R.; Kondratiev, V. I.; Ransom, S. M.; Moniot, M. L.; Thompson, C.; Cottrill, A.; Raycraft, M.; Weaver, M.; Snider, A.; Dudenhoefer, J.; Allphin, L.; Thorley, J.; and others

    2013-05-01

    We present the discovery and timing solutions of five new pulsars by students involved in the Pulsar Search Collaboratory, a NSF-funded joint program between the National Radio Astronomy Observatory and West Virginia University designed to excite and engage high-school students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) and related fields. We encourage students to pursue STEM fields by apprenticing them within a professional scientific community doing cutting edge research, specifically by teaching them to search for pulsars. The students are analyzing 300 hr of drift-scan survey data taken with the Green Bank Telescope at 350 MHz. These data cover 2876 deg{sup 2} of the sky. Over the course of five years, more than 700 students have inspected diagnostic plots through a web-based graphical interface designed for this project. The five pulsars discovered in the data have spin periods ranging from 3.1 ms to 4.8 s. Among the new discoveries are PSR J1926-1314, a long period, nulling pulsar; PSR J1821+0155, an isolated, partially recycled 33 ms pulsar; and PSR J1400-1438, a millisecond pulsar in a 9.5 day orbit whose companion is likely a white dwarf star.

  20. The Pulsar Search Collaboratory: Discovery and Timing of Five New Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosen, R.; Swiggum, J.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Lorimer, D. R.; Yun, M.; Heatherly, S. A.; Boyles, J.; Lynch, R.; Kondratiev, V. I.; Scoles, S.; Ransom, S. M.; Moniot, M. L.; Cottrill, A.; Weaver, M.; Snider, A.; Thompson, C.; Raycraft, M.; Dudenhoefer, J.; Allphin, L.; Thorley, J.; Meadows, B.; Marchiny, G.; Liska, A.; O'Dwyer, A. M.; Butler, B.; Bloxton, S.; Mabry, H.; Abate, H.; Boothe, J.; Pritt, S.; Alberth, J.; Green, A.; Crowley, R. J.; Agee, A.; Nagley, S.; Sargent, N.; Hinson, E.; Smith, K.; McNeely, R.; Quigley, H.; Pennington, A.; Chen, S.; Maynard, T.; Loope, L.; Bielski, N.; McGough, J. R.; Gural, J. C.; Colvin, S.; Tso, S.; Ewen, Z.; Zhang, M.; Ciccarella, N.; Bukowski, B.; Novotny, C. B.; Gore, J.; Sarver, K.; Johnson, S.; Cunningham, H.; Collins, D.; Gardner, D.; Monteleone, A.; Hall, J.; Schweinhagen, R.; Ayers, J.; Jay, S.; Uosseph, B.; Dunkum, D.; Pal, J.; Dydiw, S.; Sterling, M.; Phan, E.

    2013-05-01

    We present the discovery and timing solutions of five new pulsars by students involved in the Pulsar Search Collaboratory, a NSF-funded joint program between the National Radio Astronomy Observatory and West Virginia University designed to excite and engage high-school students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) and related fields. We encourage students to pursue STEM fields by apprenticing them within a professional scientific community doing cutting edge research, specifically by teaching them to search for pulsars. The students are analyzing 300 hr of drift-scan survey data taken with the Green Bank Telescope at 350 MHz. These data cover 2876 deg2 of the sky. Over the course of five years, more than 700 students have inspected diagnostic plots through a web-based graphical interface designed for this project. The five pulsars discovered in the data have spin periods ranging from 3.1 ms to 4.8 s. Among the new discoveries are PSR J1926-1314, a long period, nulling pulsar; PSR J1821+0155, an isolated, partially recycled 33 ms pulsar; and PSR J1400-1438, a millisecond pulsar in a 9.5 day orbit whose companion is likely a white dwarf star.

  1. The Ages, Speeds and Offspring of Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, Bradley Miles Stougaard

    1996-01-01

    We investigate the cooling of low mass white dwarfs with helium cores. We construct a detailed numerical model using the most modern input physics, including our own calculations of low temperature hydrogen opacities. We use our models to constrain the ages of binary millisecond pulsars from the optical observations of their white dwarf companions. We use this to place limits on the initial spin periods, magnetic field decay times and accretion histories of the millisecond pulsars. Our models can also be used along with observations of spectroscopic gravities and radial velocities to place interesting constraints on the neutron star equation of state. We provide grids of temperature and luminosity as a function of age for various white dwarf masses and surface compositions to facilitate future analyses. We have investigated the effect of the pulsar wind on the atmospheric composition of binary companions. The spallation of atmospheric helium to hydrogen increases the cooling age of the white dwarf. We find that all white dwarf companions in binaries with orbital period < 300 days should cool as DA (hydrogen surface layer) white dwarfs, irrespective of their original hydrogen content. We investigate the effect of various wind compositions and note that, if almost all the hydrogen on the surface of a pulsar companion is the result of spallation of an ionic wind, then the D/H ratio is large. We investigate the processes by which planets might form around a millisecond pulsar such as PSR B1257 + 12. We study the evolution of accretion disks of different mass, angular momentum and composition, corresponding to various proposed formation scenarios. We find that most formation scenarios require a high efficiency of conversion of metal-rich material into planets if they are to produce the observed parameters of the 1257 + 12 planetary system. We have studied the distribution of pulsar proper motions in the light of the recent analysis of Lyne & Lorimer (1994). Using a

  2. Radio Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beskin, V. S.; Chernov, S. V.; Gwinn, C. R.; Tchekhovskoy, A. A.

    2015-10-01

    Almost 50 years after radio pulsars were discovered in 1967, our understanding of these objects remains incomplete. On the one hand, within a few years it became clear that neutron star rotation gives rise to the extremely stable sequence of radio pulses, that the kinetic energy of rotation provides the reservoir of energy, and that electromagnetic fields are the braking mechanism. On the other hand, no consensus regarding the mechanism of coherent radio emission or the conversion of electromagnetic energy to particle energy yet exists. In this review, we report on three aspects of pulsar structure that have seen recent progress: the self-consistent theory of the magnetosphere of an oblique magnetic rotator; the location, geometry, and optics of radio emission; and evolution of the angle between spin and magnetic axes. These allow us to take the next step in understanding the physical nature of the pulsar activity.

  3. Astronomers Discover Fastest-Spinning Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2006-01-01

    discovered in 1982. For reference, the fastest speeds of common kitchen blenders are 250-500 Hz. The scientists say the object's fast rotation speed means that it cannot be any larger than about 20 miles across. According to Hessels, "If it were any larger, material from the surface would be flung into orbit around the star." The scientists' calculation assumed that the neutron star contains less than two times the mass of the Sun, an assumption that is consistent with the masses of all known neutron stars. The spinning pulsar has a companion star that orbits it once every 26 hours. The companion passes in front of the pulsar, eclipsing the pulsar about 40 percent of the time. The long eclipse period, probably due to bloating of the companion, makes it difficult for the astronomers to learn details of the orbital configuration that would allow them to precisely measure the masses of the pulsar and its companion. "If we could pin down these masses more precisely, we could then get a better limit on the size of the pulsar. That, in turn, would then give us a better figure for the true density inside the neutron star," explained Ingrid Stairs, an assistant professor at the University of British Columbia and another collaborator on the work. Competing theoretical models for the types and distributions of elementary particles inside neutron stars make widely different predictions about the pressure and density of such an object. "We want observational data that shows which models fit the reality of nature," Hessels said. If the scientists can't use PSR J1748-2446ad to do that, they are hopeful some of its near neighbors will yield the data they seek. Using the GBT, the astronomers so far have found 30 new fast "millisecond pulsars" in the cluster Terzan 5, making 33 pulsars known in the cluster in total. This is the largest number of such pulsars ever found in a single globular cluster. Dense globular clusters of stars are excellent places to find fast-rotating millisecond

  4. The gamma-ray pulsar population of globular clusters: Implications for the GeV excess

    DOE PAGES

    Hooper, Dan; Linden, Tim

    2016-08-09

    In this study, it has been suggested that the GeV excess, observed from the region surrounding the Galactic Center, might originate from a population of millisecond pulsars that formed in globular clusters. With this in mind, we employ the publicly available Fermi data to study the gamma-ray emission from 157 globular clusters, identifying a statistically significant signal from 25 of these sources (ten of which are not found in existing gamma-ray catalogs). We combine these observations with the predicted pulsar formation rate based on the stellar encounter rate of each globular cluster to constrain the gamma-ray luminosity function of millisecondmore » pulsars in the Milky Way's globular cluster system. We find that this pulsar population exhibits a luminosity function that is quite similar to those millisecond pulsars observed in the field of the Milky Way (i.e. the thick disk). After pulsars are expelled from a globular cluster, however, they continue to lose rotational kinetic energy and become less luminous, causing their luminosity function to depart from the steady-state distribution. Using this luminosity function and a model for the globular cluster disruption rate, we show that millisecond pulsars born in globular clusters can account for only a few percent or less of the observed GeV excess. Among other challenges, scenarios in which the entire GeV excess is generated from such pulsars are in conflict with the observed mass of the Milky Way's Central Stellar Cluster.« less

  5. Timing will Tell: Constraining Pulsar Timing Errors in the Search for Gravitational Waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwab, Ellianna; Ransom, Scott M.; NANOGrav

    2017-01-01

    Millisecond pulsars produce extremely precise, clock-like electromagnetic radiation pulses. Theoretically, noise in the arrival times (TOAs) of these individual pulses could be used to measure nanohertz-frequency gravitational waves. However, variability in the individual pulse shapes and TOAs due to intrinsic effects of the pulsar, known as pulsar jitter, can mask the noise caused by gravitational waves. We examine the effects of both brightness and time resolution on jitter in a sample of 10 millisecond pulsars observed by the NANOGrav collaboration regularly over an 11-year observation span. We find that several pulsars show quantifiable jitter on their brightest days while others do not, and that jitter grows more pronounced both in pulsars with a high signal-to-noise ratio and as the observer approaches the time resolution of a single millisecond pulse. We provide two methods of quantifying jitter to allow for comparison, both between observations of different pulsars and between observations of the same pulsar on different days.

  6. A radio pulsar/x-ray binary link.

    PubMed

    Archibald, Anne M; Stairs, Ingrid H; Ransom, Scott M; Kaspi, Victoria M; Kondratiev, Vladislav I; Lorimer, Duncan R; McLaughlin, Maura A; Boyles, Jason; Hessels, Jason W T; Lynch, Ryan; van Leeuwen, Joeri; Roberts, Mallory S E; Jenet, Frederick; Champion, David J; Rosen, Rachel; Barlow, Brad N; Dunlap, Bart H; Remillard, Ronald A

    2009-06-12

    Radio pulsars with millisecond spin periods are thought to have been spun up by the transfer of matter and angular momentum from a low-mass companion star during an x-ray-emitting phase. The spin periods of the neutron stars in several such low-mass x-ray binary (LMXB) systems have been shown to be in the millisecond regime, but no radio pulsations have been detected. Here we report on detection and follow-up observations of a nearby radio millisecond pulsar (MSP) in a circular binary orbit with an optically identified companion star. Optical observations indicate that an accretion disk was present in this system within the past decade. Our optical data show no evidence that one exists today, suggesting that the radio MSP has turned on after a recent LMXB phase.

  7. Large scale pulsar surveys, new pulsar discoveries, and the observability of pulsar beams strongly bent by the Sag. A* black hole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stovall, Kevin

    Pulsars are useful tools for a large range of topics including but not limited to the detection of gravitational waves; tests of theories of gravity; population studies of pulsars, neutron stars, and binary systems; and analysis of Galactic structure. In the case of detections of gravitational waves, large numbers of extremely fast pulsars with periods of a few milliseconds distributed across a large number of angular separations are needed. In the case of population and Galactic structure studies, large numbers of pulsars distributed throughout the Galaxy are necessary. In order to find pulsars in the exotic systems useful for tests of theories of gravity, large number of pulsar discoveries are necessary in order to find these rare objects. As all of these efforts require the discovery of large numbers of pulsars, a significant effort has been made over the past few years, and will continue into the foreseeable future, to detect many more new radio pulsars through large scale pulsar surveys. The surveys related to this work include the Pulsar Arecibo L-Band Feed Array, the Green Bank 350MHz Drift Scan Survey, the Arecibo 327MHz Drift Scan Survey (AO327), and the Green Bank North Celestial Cap (GBNCC) survey. Data analysis from each of these surveys has resulted or will result in millions of pulsar candidates to be combed through, in some way, in order to find new radio pulsars. Here we discuss these surveys and the data analysis pipelines for two of them (AO327 and GBNCC). We also introduce a web based software system called ARCC Explorer, which enables researchers of varying levels, including high school and undergraduate students, to assist in the discovery process. In addition, we give discovery or timing solutions for 93 new pulsars directly discovered as a result of this work. One particularly interesting, but not yet detected, pulsar system is the pulsar-black hole system. Attempts have been made (and are still ongoing) to detect pulsars orbiting the black

  8. Pulsars Magnetospheres

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Timokhin, Andrey

    2012-01-01

    Current density determines the plasma flow regime. Cascades are non-stationary. ALWAYS. All flow regimes look different: multiple components (?) Return current regions should have particle accelerating zones in the outer magnetosphere: y-ray pulsars (?) Plasma oscillations in discharges: direct radio emission (?)

  9. Pulsars for the Beginner

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DiLavore, Phillip; Wayland, James R.

    1971-01-01

    Presents the history of the discovery of pulsars, observations that have been made on pulsar radiation, and theories that have been presented for its presence and origin. Illustrations using pulsar's properties are presented in mechanics, electromagnetic radiation and thermodynamics. (DS)

  10. High-energy pulsar models: Developments and new questions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Venter, C.; Harding, A. K.

    2014-03-01

    The past few years have seen a major advance in observational knowledge of high-energy (HE) pulsars. The Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) and {AGILE} have increased the number of known γ-ray pulsars by an order of magnitude, its members being divided roughly equally among millisecond pulsars (MSPs), young radio-loud pulsars, and young radio-quiet pulsars. Many new and diverse emission characteristics are being measured, while radio and X-ray follow-up observations increase the pulsar detection rate and enrich our multiwavelength picture of these extreme sources. The wealth of new data has provided impetus for further development and improvement of existing theoretical pulsar models. Geometric light curve (LC) modelling has uncovered three broad classes into which HE pulsars fall: those where the radio profile leads, is aligned with, or lags the γ-ray profile. For example, the original MSP and original black widow system are members of the second class, requiring co-located emission regions and thereby breaking with traditional notions of radio emission origin. These models imply narrow accelerator gaps in the outer magnetosphere, indicating copious pair production even in MSP magnetospheres that were previously thought to be pair-starved. The increased quality and variety of the LCs necessitate construction of ever more sophisticated models. We will review progress in global magnetosphere solutions which specify a finite conductivity on field lines above the stellar surface, filling the gap between the standard vacuum and force-free (FF; plasma-filled) models. The possibility of deriving phase-resolved spectra for the brightest pulsars, coupled with the fact that the HE pulsar population is sizable enough to allow sampling of various pulsar geometries, will enable much more stringent testing of future radiation models. Reproduction of the observed phase-resolved behavior of this disparate group will be one of the next frontiers in pulsar science, impacting on our

  11. High-Energy Pulsar Models: Developments and New Questions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Venter, C.; Harding, A. K.

    2014-01-01

    The past few years have seen a major advance in observational knowledge of high-energy (HE) pulsars. The Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) and AGILE have increased the number of known gamma-ray pulsars by an order of magnitude, its members being divided roughly equally among millisecond pulsars (MSPs), young radio-loud pulsars, and young radio-quiet pulsars. Many new and diverse emission characteristics are being measured, while radio and X-ray follow-up observations increase the pulsar detection rate and enrich our multiwavelength picture of these extreme sources. The wealth of new data has provided impetus for further development and improvement of existing theoretical pulsar models. Geometric light curve (LC) modelling has uncovered three broad classes into which HE pulsars fall: those where the radio profile leads, is aligned with, or lags the gamma-ray profile. For example, the original MSP and original black widow system are members of the second class, requiring co-located emission regions and thereby breaking with traditional notions of radio emission origin. These models imply narrow accelerator gaps in the outer magnetosphere, indicating copious pair production even in MSP magnetospheres that were previously thought to be pair-starved. The increased quality and variety of the LCs necessitate construction of ever more sophisticated models. We will review progress in global magnetosphere solutions which specify a finite conductivity on field lines above the stellar surface, filling the gap between the standard vacuum and force-free (FF; plasma-filled) models. The possibility of deriving phase-resolved spectra for the brightest pulsars, coupled with the fact that the HE pulsar population is sizable enough to allow sampling of various pulsar geometries, will enable much more stringent testing of future radiation models. Reproduction of the observed phase-resolved behavior of this disparate group will be one of the next frontiers in pulsar science, impacting on

  12. Probing Microstructure in Interstellar Plasma with Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Backer, Donald

    1999-11-01

    Pulsars provide excellent probes of small structure in the interstellar plasma. The list of observable effects includes dispersion, Faraday rotation, diffraction and refraction. Of great interest recently has been episodes of lensing and dual path propagation when the plasma perturbation has just the right focal length for the pulsar-perturber-earth geometry at a given frequency. I will discuss a recent study of the variable dispersion, refraction and diffraction of the millisecond pulsar B1937+21. This is based mainly on daily observations at 327 and 610 MHz with a pulsar monitoring telescope in Green Bank, WV. Further observations at 820 and 1395 MHz allow us to investigate the limits on dispersion measure determination set by diffraction. Length scales in the medium from 10^10 to 10^15 cm are probed. A second study focuses on a rare event in the Crab pulsar where the dispersion measure jumped by 0.1 pc cm-3 within one week and, prior to the jump, a faint and delayed ghost of the pulsed emission was observed. These phenomena can be explained in terms of a plasma wedge crossing the line of sight. The most likely location of this wedge is in the Rayleigh-Taylor unstable interface between the expanding supernova remains and the pre-supernova stellar wind debris.

  13. Prospects for Pulsar Studies with the GLAST Large Area Telescope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.

    2007-01-01

    The Large Area Telescope (LAT) on the Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope (GLAST), due to launch in November 2007, will have unprecedented sensitivity and energy resolution for gamma-rays in the range of 30 MeV to 200 GeV. GLAST is therefore expected to provide major advances in the understanding of high-energy emission from rotation-powered pulsars. As the only presently known galactic GeV source class; pulsars will be one of the most important sources for study with GLAST. The main science goals of the LAT for pulsar studies include an increase in the number of detected radio-loud and radio-quiet gamma-ray pulsars, including millisecond pulsars, giving much better statistics for elucidating population characteristics, measurement of the high-energy spectrum and the shape of spectral cutoffs and determining pulse profiles for a variety of pulsars of different age. Further, measurement of phase-resolved spectra and energy dependent pulse profiles of the brighter pulsars should allow detailed tests of magnetospheric particle acceleration and radiation mechanisms, by comparing data with theoretical models that have been developed. Additionally, the LAT will have the sensitivity to allow blind pulsation searches of nearly all unidentified EGRET sources, to possibly uncover more radio-quiet Geminga-like pulsars.

  14. Prospects for Pulsar Studies with the GLAST Large Area Telescope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.

    2006-01-01

    The Large Area Telescope (LAT) on the Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope (GLAST) will have unprecedented sensitivity and energy resolution for gamma-rays in the range of 30 MeV to 200 GeV. GLAST is therefore expected to provide major advances in the understanding of high-energy emission from rotation-powered pulsars. As the only presently known galactic GeV source class, pulsars will be one of the most important sources for study with GLAST. The main science goals of the LAT for pulsar studies include an increase in the number of detected radio-loud and radio-quiet gamma ray pulsars, including millisecond pulsars, giving much better statistics for elucidating population characteristics, measurement of the high-energy spectrum and the shape of spectral cutoffs and determining pulse profiles for a variety of pulsars of different age. Further, measurement of phase-resolved spectra and energy dependent pulse profiles of the brighter pulsars should allow detailed tests of magnetospheric particle acceleration and radiation mechanisms, by comparing data with theoretical models that have been developed. Additionally, the LAT will have the sensitivity to allow blind pulsation searches of nearly all unidentified EGRET sources, to possibly uncover more radio-quiet Geminga-like pulsars.

  15. Parameters of radio pulsars in binary systems and globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loginov, A. A.; Malov, I. F.

    2017-02-01

    The parameters of radio pulsars in binary systems and globular clusters are investigated. It is shown that such pulsars tend to have short periods (of the order of several milliseconds). Themagnetic fields of most of the pulsars considered are weak (surface fields of the order of 108-109 G). This corresponds to the generally accepted view that short-period neutron stars are spun up by angular momentum associated with the stellar wind from a companion. However, the fields at the light cylinders in these objects are two to three orders of magnitude higher than for the main population of single neutron stars. The dependence of the pulse width on the period does not differ from the corresponding dependences for single pulsars, assuming the emission is generated inside the polar cap, at moderate distances from the surface or near the light cylinder. The radio luminosities of pulsars in binary systems do not show the correlation with the rate of loss of rotational energy that is characteristic for single pulsars, probably due to the influence of accreting matter from a companion. Moreover, accretion apparently decreases the power of the emergent radiation, and can explain the observed systematic excess of the radio luminosity of single pulsars compared to pulsars in binary systems. The distributions and dependences presented in the article support generally accepted concepts concerning the processes occurring in binary systems containing neutron stars.

  16. Millisecond Oxidation of Alkanes

    SciTech Connect

    Scott Han

    2011-09-30

    This project was undertaken in response to the Department of Energy's call to research and develop technologies 'that will reduce energy consumption, enhance economic competitiveness, and reduce environmental impacts of the domestic chemical industry.' The current technology at the time for producing 140 billion pounds per year of propylene from naphtha and Liquified Petroleum Gas (LPG) relied on energy- and capital-intensive steam crackers and Fluidized Catalytic Cracking (FCC) units. The propylene is isolated from the product stream in a costly separation step and subsequently converted to acrylic acid and other derivatives in separate production facilities. This project proposed a Short Contact Time Reactor (SCTR)-based catalytic oxydehydrogenation process that could convert propane to propylene and acrylic acid in a cost-effective and energy-efficient fashion. Full implementation of this technology could lead to sizeable energy, economic and environmental benefits for the U. S. chemical industry by providing up to 45 trillion BTUs/year, cost savings of $1.8 billion/year and a combined 35 million pounds/year reduction in environmental pollutants such as COx, NOx, and SOx. Midway through the project term, the program directive changed, which approval from the DOE and its review panel, from direct propane oxidation to acrylic acid at millisecond contact times to a two-step process for making acrylic acid from propane. The first step was the primary focus, namely the conversion of propane to propylene in high yields assisted by the presence of CO2. The product stream from step one was then to be fed directly into a commercially practiced propylene-to-acrylic acid tandem reactor system.

  17. Enabling pulsar and fast transient searches using coherent dedispersion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bassa, C. G.; Pleunis, Z.; Hessels, J. W. T.

    2017-01-01

    We present an implementation of the coherent dedispersion algorithm capable of dedispersing high-time-resolution radio observations to many different dispersion measures (DMs). This approach allows the removal of the dispersive effects of the interstellar medium and enables searches for pulsed emission from pulsars and other millisecond-duration transients at low observing frequencies and/or high DMs where time broadening of the signal due to dispersive smearing would otherwise severely reduce the sensitivity. The implementation, called cdmt, for coherent dispersion measure trials, exploits the parallel processing capability of general-purpose graphics processing units to accelerate the computations. We describe the coherent dedispersion algorithm and detail how cdmt implements the algorithm to efficiently compute many coherent DM trials. We apply the concept of a semi-coherent dedispersion search, where coherently dedispersed trials at coarsely separated DMs are subsequently incoherently dedispersed at finer steps in DM. The software is used in an ongoing LOFAR pilot survey to test the feasibility of performing semi-coherent dedispersion searches for millisecond pulsars at 135 MHz. This pilot survey has led to the discovery of a radio millisecond pulsar-the first at these low frequencies. This is the first time that such a broad and comprehensive search in DM-space has been done using coherent dedispersion, and we argue that future low-frequency pulsar searches using this approach are both scientifically compelling and feasible. Finally, we compare the performance of cdmt with other available alternatives.

  18. The Effect of Geometrical Factors on Pulsar Rotation Parameters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, L.; Wang, G. L.; Guo, L.

    2016-09-01

    This paper presents a detailed investigation of the effects of geometrical factors on pulsar rotation parameters, such as the Earth orientation parameters, precession-nutation model, relative velocity, relative radial acceleration, and planetary ephemeris error. We derive the magnitude of the effect of secular variations in the observed periods and period derivatives, assuming that pulsars have typical values of the parameters. The effects of Earth orientation parameters and precession-nutation model are neglected at the current accuracy level of observation. Furthermore, the planetary ephemeris error has a marginal effect on the pulsar period parameters, and the effect of relative radial velocity is also ignored. However, the transverse velocity and relative radial acceleration stand as the likely sources of period derivative, especially for millisecond pulsars, where they may dominate the observed value of period derivative.

  19. Nanohertz gravitational wave searches with interferometric pulsar timing experiments.

    PubMed

    Tinto, Massimo

    2011-05-13

    We estimate the sensitivity to nano-Hertz gravitational waves of pulsar timing experiments in which two highly stable millisecond pulsars are tracked simultaneously with two neighboring radio telescopes that are referenced to the same timekeeping subsystem (i.e., "the clock"). By taking the difference of the two time-of-arrival residual data streams we can exactly cancel the clock noise in the combined data set, thereby enhancing the sensitivity to gravitational waves. We estimate that, in the band (10(-9)-10(-8))  Hz, this "interferometric" pulsar timing technique can potentially improve the sensitivity to gravitational radiation by almost 2 orders of magnitude over that of single-telescopes. Interferometric pulsar timing experiments could be performed with neighboring pairs of antennas of the NASA's Deep Space Network and the forthcoming large arraying projects.

  20. Inferring the Composition of Super-Jupiter Mass Companions of Pulsars with Radio Line Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, Alak; Loeb, Abraham

    2017-02-01

    We propose using radio line spectroscopy to detect molecular absorption lines (such as OH at 1.6–1.7 GHz) before and after the total eclipse of black widow and other short orbital period binary pulsars with low-mass companions. The companion in such a binary may be ablated away by energetic particles and high-energy radiation produced by the pulsar wind. The observations will probe the eclipsing wind being ablated by the pulsar and constrain the nature of the companion and its surroundings. Maser emission from the interstellar medium stimulated by a pulsar beam might also be detected from the intrabinary medium. The short temporal resolution allowed by the millisecond pulsars can probe this medium with the high angular resolution of the pulsar beam.

  1. Is XTE J1701-407 Extended?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaplan, David

    2007-09-01

    We recently observed the neutron star X-ray transient XTE J1701-407 with Chandra, using 1 ks of ACIS-S data for localization. However, the Chandra data do not show a point source. Instead the source appears extended over ~6 arcsec. We have investigated the data, consulting with experts both at MIT and SAO, and cannot ascribe the data to purely instrumental effects (aspect errors or pileup). The extended X-ray emission could come from an outflow or a dust scattering halo - both very interesting and rare phenomena. Jets allow detailed calorimetry of the outbursts, while scattering halos lead to geometric distances. We request a 5 ks ACIS-S subarray observation to definitively assess the morphology, trying to discriminate between these scenarios before the target fades into quiescence.

  2. SIX NEW RECYCLED GLOBULAR CLUSTER PULSARS DISCOVERED WITH THE GREEN BANK TELESCOPE

    SciTech Connect

    Lynch, Ryan S.; Ransom, Scott M.; Freire, Paulo C. C.; Stairs, Ingrid H. E-mail: sransom@nrao.edu E-mail: stairs@astro.ubc.ca

    2011-06-20

    We have completed sensitive searches for new pulsars in seven globular clusters using the Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope, and have discovered six new recycled pulsars (four in NGC 6517 and two in M22), five of which are fully recycled millisecond pulsars with P < 10 ms. We report full timing solutions for all six new pulsars and provide estimates of their flux densities and spectral indices. None of the pulsars is detected in archival Chandra data down to L{sub X} {approx} 10{sup 32} erg s{sup -1} for NGC 6517 and L{sub X} {approx} 10{sup 31} erg s{sup -1} for M22. One of the millisecond pulsars in M22 appears to have a very low mass companion, and is likely a new 'black widow'. A second binary pulsar in NGC 6517 is in a long-period, mildly eccentric orbit. We are able to set some lower limits on the age of the system, and find that it may be less than a few hundred million years old, which would indicate recent pulsar recycling in NGC 6517. An isolated pulsar in NGC 6517 that lies about 20 core radii from the cluster center appears to have been ejected from the core by interacting with a massive binary. By analyzing the luminosity function of the pulsars in NGC 6517, we predict the cluster to harbor roughly a dozen pulsars. We use the observed period derivatives of three pulsars to set lower limits on the mass-to-light ratios in the cores of their host clusters, and find no evidence for large amounts of low-luminosity matter. We also discuss reasons for non-detections in some of the clusters we searched.

  3. Determination of Mass Limits Around Pulsars at 10 and 90 umu m with ISO- 0.3 cm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koch Miramond, Lydie; Podsiadlowski, Philipp; Haas, Martin; Naylor, Tim; Sauvage, Marc

    We present mid-infrared photometric results obtained with ISOCAM and ISOPHOT on 3 millisecond pulsars and 3 ordinary radio pulsars. No detections have been obtained for the three ms pulsars nor the two more distant radio pulsars. A faint enhancement in the brightness map at 90 microns is seen at about 5 arcsec from the radio position of PSR J0108-1431, the nearest radio pulsar (Tauris et al, 1994), located at 85 pc from us. We conclude that this 90 micron emission, amounting to about 12 mJy, originates either from material orbiting the pulsar or from cirrus on the line of sight. We deduce the upper limits on mass of dust orbiting this pulsar and on the mean temperature of grains.

  4. Anomalous Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malov, I. F.

    Many astrophysicists believe that Anomalous X-Ray Pulsars (AXP), Soft Gamma-Ray Repeaters (SGR), Rotational Radio Transients (RRAT), Compact Central Objects (CCO) and X-Ray Dim Isolated Neutron Stars (XDINS) belong to different classes of anomalous objects with neutron stars as the central bodies inducing all their observable peculiarities. We have shown earlier [1] that AXPs and SGRs could be described by the drift model in the framework of the preposition on usual properties of the central neutron star (rotation periods P 0.01 - 1 sec and, surface magnetic fields B ~ 10^11-10^13 G). Here we shall try to show that some differences of the sources under consideration will be explained by their geometry (particularly, by the angle β between their rotation and magnetic axes). If β <~ 100 (the aligned rotator) the drift waves at the outer layers of the neutron star magnetosphere should play a key role in the observable periodicity. For large values of β (the case of the nearly orthogonal rotator) an accretion from the surrounding medium (for example, from the relic disk) can cause some modulation and transient events in received radiation. Recently Kramer et al. [2] and Camilo et al. [3] have shown that AXPs J1810-197 and 1E 1547.0 - 5408 have both small angles β, that is these sources are nearly aligned rotators, and the drift model should be used for their description. On the other hand, Wang et al. [4] detected IR radiation from the cold disk around the isolated young X-ray pulsar 4U 0142+61. This was the first evidence of the disk-like matter around the neutron star. Probably there is the bimodality of anomalous pulsars. AXPs, SGRs and some radio transients belong to the population of aligned rotators with the angle between the rotation axis and the magnetic moment β < 200. These objects are described by the drift model, and their observed periods are connected with a periodicity of drift waves. Other sources have β ~ 900, and switching on's and switching off

  5. PRESTO: PulsaR Exploration and Search TOolkit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ransom, Scott

    2011-07-01

    PRESTO is a large suite of pulsar search and analysis software. It was primarily designed to efficiently search for binary millisecond pulsars from long observations of globular clusters (although it has since been used in several surveys with short integrations and to process a lot of X-ray data as well). To date, PRESTO has discovered well over a hundred and fifty pulsars, including approximately 100 recycled pulsars, about 80 of which are in binaries. It is written primarily in ANSI C, with many of the recent routines in Python. Written with portability, ease-of-use, and memory efficiency in mind, it can currently handle raw data from the following pulsar machines or formats: PSRFITS search-format data (as from GUPPI at the GBT and the Mock Spectrometers at Arecibo)SPIGOT at the GBTMost Wideband Arecibo Pulsar Processor (WAPP) at AreciboThe Parkes and Jodrell Bank 1-bit filterbank formatsBerkeley-Caltech Pulsar Machine (BCPM) at the GBT (may it RIP...)8-bit filterbank format from SIGPROC (other formats will be added if required)A time series composed of single precision (i.e. 4-byte) floating point dataPhoton arrival times (or events) in ASCII or double-precision binary formats

  6. Prospects for Pulsar Studies with the GLAST Large Area Telescope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.

    2007-01-01

    The Large Area Telescope (LAT) on the Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope (GLAST), due to launch in November 2007, will have unprecedented sensitivity and energy resolution for gamma-rays in the range of 30 MeV to 200 GeV. GLAST is therefore expected to provide major advances in the understanding of high-energy emission from rotation-powered p ulsars. As the only presently known galactic GeV source class, pulsar s will be one of the most important sources for study with GLAST. The main science goals of the LAT for pulsar studies include an increase in the number of detected radio-loud and radio-quiet gamma-ray pulsar s, including millisecond pulsars, giving much better statistics for e lucidating population characteristics, measurement of the high-energy spectrum and the shape of spectral cutoffs and determining pulse profiles for a variety of pulsars of different age. Further, measurement of phase-resolved spectra and energy dependent pulse profiles of the brighter pulsars should allow detailed tests of magnetospheric partic le acceleration and radiation mechanisms, by comparing data with theo retical models that have been developed. Additionally, the LAT will have the sensitivity to allow blind pulsation searches of nearly all un identified EGRET sources, to possibly uncover more radio-quiet Geming a-like pulsars.

  7. Towards robust detection of gravitational waves by pulsar timing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cornish, Neil J.; Sampson, Laura

    2016-01-01

    Precision timing of highly stable milli-second pulsars is a promising technique for detecting very low frequency sources of gravitational waves. In any one pulsar, the gravitational wave signal appears as an additional source of timing noise, and it is only by considering the coherent response across a network of pulsars that the signal can be distinguished from other sources of noise. In the limit where there are many gravitational wave sources, or in the limit where there are many pulsars in the array, the waves produce a unique tensor correlation pattern that depends only on the angular separation of each pulsar pair. It is this distinct fingerprint that is used to search for gravitational waves using pulsar timing arrays. Here we consider how the prospects for detection are diminished when there are a finite number of signals and pulsars, which breaks the statistical isotropy of the timing array and of the gravitational wave sky. We also study the use of "sky-scrambles'' to break the signal correlations in the data as a way to increase confidence in a detection.

  8. Pulsar Wind Nebulae, Space Velocities and Supernova Remnant

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    The original proposal for this LTSA grant was for X-ray studies of pulsars, and especially pulsar wind nebulae and what they could tell us about pulsar properties, especially their space velocities. By any metric, this program has been very successful. No fewer than 14 papers on directly related topics (and several dozen more on related topics) have been published in refereed journals with the PI as lead or co-author, all observational results that have had significant impact on the field. These include the first X-ray detection of the "Duck" pulsar, a clear demonstration that estimated pulsar ages can be off by over an order of magnitude (via observations of the young supernova remnant G11.2-0.3) and the detection of the first pulsar wind nebula around a millisecond pulsar. These publications have also resulted in 4 press releases. Moreover, they also represent the thesis work of two PhD students at MIT (Froney Crawford and Mike Pivovaroff) and one postdoctoral fellow, Bryan Gaensler, now Assistant Professor at Harvard.

  9. Mildly Recycled Pulsars at High-Energies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pellizzoni, A.

    2011-08-01

    Mildly recyled pulsars (MRP), conventionally defined as neutron star having spin period in the 20-100 ms range and surface magnetic field <1011 Gauss, probably rise from binary systems (disrupted or not) with an intermediate or an high mass companion. Despite their relatively low spin-down energies compared to the ``fully'' recycled millisecond pulsars (arising from common low mass X-ray binaries), nearby MRPs can be detected by deep X-ray observations and by timing analysis of the very long data span provided by gamma-ray space detectors. The discovery of peculiar timing and spectral properties, possibly transitional, of the MRPs can be of the utmost importance to link different classes of neutron stars and study their evolution.

  10. Tackling radio polarization of energetic pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Craig, H. A.

    2014-08-01

    The traditional, geometrical rotating vector model (RVM) has proved particularly poor at capturing the polarization sweeps of the young energetic and millisecond pulsars detected by Fermi. We augment this model by including finite altitude effects using a swept back vacuum dipole geometry. By further including the effects of orthogonal mode jumps, multiple emission altitudes, open zone growth via y-point lowering, and interstellar scattering, we show that a wide range of departures from RVM can be modeled well while retaining a geometrical picture. We illustrate these effects by fitting six Fermi-detected pulsars (J0023+0923, J1024–0719, J1744–1134, J1057–5226, J1420–6048, and J2124–3358) and we describe how such modeling can improve our understanding of their emission geometry.

  11. Pulsars and supernova remnants

    SciTech Connect

    Narayan, R.; Schaudt, K.J.

    1988-02-01

    With the recent discovery of the pulsar PSR 1951 + 22 in CTB 80, four pulsars are now known in supernova remnants (SNRs) of the plerion and composite classes. It is argued that this success rate of pulsar detections implies that young fast pulsars have long fan-beams that enable them to be seen from most directions. Based on calculations that use a pulsar luminosity model and allow for selection effects, it is suggested that the best SNRs for future pulsar searches are 3C 58, MSH 11-62, G24.7 + 0.6, and MSH 15-56. It is also concluded that the failure to detect pulsars in shell SNRs implies either that there are no pulsars in these SNRs or that the pulsars are unusually weak, possibly due to slow rotation or weak magnetic fields. 25 references.

  12. Arecibo Pulsar Survey Using ALFA. IV. Mock Spectrometer Data Analysis, Survey Sensitivity, and the Discovery of 40 Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-10-01

    The on-going Arecibo Pulsar-ALFA (PALFA) survey began in 2004 and is searching for radio pulsars in the Galactic plane at 1.4 GHz. Here we present a comprehensive description of one of its main data reduction pipelines that is based on the PRESTO software and includes new interference-excision algorithms and candidate selection heuristics. This pipeline has been used to discover 40 pulsars, bringing the survey’s discovery total to 144 pulsars. Of the new discoveries, eight are millisecond pulsars (MSPs; P\\lt 10 ms) and one is a Fast Radio Burst (FRB). This pipeline has also re-detected 188 previously known pulsars, 60 of them previously discovered by the other PALFA pipelines. We present a novel method for determining the survey sensitivity that accurately takes into account the effects of interference and red noise: we inject synthetic pulsar signals with various parameters into real survey observations and then attempt to recover them with our pipeline. We find that the PALFA survey achieves the sensitivity to MSPs predicted by theoretical models but suffers a degradation for P≳ 100 ms that gradually becomes up to ˜10 times worse for P\\gt 4 {{s}} at {DM}\\lt 150 pc cm-3. We estimate 33 ± 3% of the slower pulsars are missed, largely due to red noise. A population synthesis analysis using the sensitivity limits we measured suggests the PALFA survey should have found 224 ± 16 un-recycled pulsars in the data set analyzed, in agreement with the 241 actually detected. The reduced sensitivity could have implications on estimates of the number of long-period pulsars in the Galaxy.

  13. Pulsars at the Center of the Galaxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Majid, Walid

    2016-07-01

    Over the past few years, a number of groups using data from NASA's space-borne Fermi LAT instrument have identified excess gamma-ray flux toward the inner 1º of the Galactic Center (GC), with an even larger significant excess within 0.2º degrees. At present there are two leading candidates for this excess: dark matter annihilation and a population of unresolved millisecond pulsars (MSPs). We are currently developing dedicated instrumentation to carry out a sensitive search for the pulsars in this region of the galaxy using a newly developed front end and receiver on a Deep Space Network large diameter antenna in Australia. In this presentation, we will provide an overview of the challenges encountered with pulsar searches at the GC region and a summary of previous and ongoing efforts to survey this region with radio telescopes. We will also provide preliminary results from our recent observations of the GC region at 2 and 8 GHz and will conclude with prospects for detection of perhaps hundreds of pulsars in this region with new generations of radio telescopes now under construction.

  14. Pulsars at the Center of the Galaxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Majid, Walid A.; Prince, Thomas A.

    2016-06-01

    Over the past few years, a number of groups using data from NASA’s space-borne Fermi LAT instrument have identified excess gamma-ray flux toward the inner degree of the Galactic Center (GC), with an even larger significant excess within 0.2 degrees. At present there are two leading candidates for this excess: dark matter annihilation and a population of unresolved millisecond pulsars (MSPs). We are currently developing dedicated instrumentation to carry out a sensitive search for the pulsars in this region of the galaxy using a newly developed front end and receiver on a Deep Space Network large diameter antenna in Australia. In this presentation, we will provide an overview of the challenges encountered with pulsar searches at the GC region and a summary of previous and ongoing efforts to survey this region with radio telescopes. We will also provide preliminary results from our recent observations of the GC region at 2 and 8 GHz and will conclude with prospects for detection of perhaps hundreds of pulsars in this region with new generations of radio telescopes now under construction.

  15. Pulsars at the Center of the Galaxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Majid, Walid A.

    2016-04-01

    Over the past few years, a number of groups using data from NASA’s space-borne Fermi LAT instrument have identified excess gamma-ray flux toward the inner few degrees of the Galactic Center (GC), with an even larger significant excess within 1 degree of this region. At present there are two leading candidates for this excess: dark matter annihilation and a population of unresolved millisecond pulsars (MSPs). We are currently developing dedicated instrumentation to carry out a sensitive search for the pulsars in this region of the galaxy using a newly developed front end and receiver on a Deep Space Network large diameter antenna in Australia. In this presentation, we will provide an overview of the challenges encountered with pulsar searches at the GC region and a summary of previous and ongoing efforts to survey this region with radio telescopes. We will also provide preliminary results from our recent observations of the GC region at 2 and 8 GHz and will conclude with prospects for detection of perhaps hundreds of pulsars in this region with new generations of radio telescopes now under construction.

  16. Chandra Results on Pulsars and Plerions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pavlov, G. G.

    2000-10-01

    I will overview the results of imaging, spectral and timing analysis of isolated neutron stars observed in Chandra Cycle 1, including the young Vela pulsar and its X-ray plerion, the middle-aged pulsar B1055--52, the millisecond pulsar J0437--4715, the radio-silent isolated neutron stars in the PKS 1209--51/52, Puppis A and Cas A supernova remnants. Among the results are the fine spatial structure and spectrum of the Vela compact nebula, the multicomponent light curve and spectrum of the Vela pulsar, discovery of the 424 ms period of 1E 1207--52, the phase-dependent spectrum and energy-dependent pulse profile of PSR B1055-52, the lack of X-ray emission from the bow-shock nebula of PSR J0437--4715. The work was partially supported by SAO grants GO0-1012X, GO0-1126X and GO0-1131A.

  17. Pulsar population synthesis using palfa detections and pulsar search collaboratory discoveries including a wide DNS system and a nearby MSP

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swiggum, Joseph Karl

    Using the ensemble of detections from pulsar surveys, we can learn about the sizes and characteristics of underlying populations. In this thesis, I analyze results from the Pulsar Arecibo L-band Feed Array (PALFA) precursor and Green Bank Telescope 350 MHz Drift Scan surveys; I examine survey sensitivity to see how detections can inform pulsar population models, I look at new ways of including young scientists -- high school students -- in the discovery process and I present timing solutions for students' discoveries (including a nearby millisecond pulsar and a pulsar in a wide-orbit double neutron star system). The PALFA survey is on-going and uses the ALFA 7-beam receiver at 1400 MHz to search both inner and outer Galactic sectors visible from Arecibo (32° ?£? 77° and 168° ?£? 214°) close to the Galactic plane (|b| ? 5°) for pulsars. The PALFA precursor survey observed a subset of this region, (|b| ? 1°) and detected 45 pulsars, including one known millisecond pulsar (MSP) and 11 previously unknown, long-period (normal) pulsars. I assess the sensitivity of the PALFA precursor survey and use the number of normal pulsar and MSP detections to infer the size of each underlying Galactic population. Based on 44 normal pulsar detections and one MSP, we constrain each population size to 107,000+36,000-25,000 and 15,000 +85,000-6,000 respectively with 95% confidence. Based on these constraints, we predict yields for the full PALFA survey and find a deficiency in normal pulsar detections, possibly due to radio frequency interference and/or scintillation, neither of which are currently accounted for in population simulations. The GBT 350 MHz Drift Scan survey collected data in the summer of 2007 while the GBT was stationary, undergoing track replacement. Results discussed here come from ~20% of the survey data, which were processed and donated to the Pulsar Search Collaboratory (PSC). The PSC is a joint outreach program between WVU and NRAO, involving high school

  18. Known Pulsars Identified in the GMRT 150 MHz All-sky Survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frail, D. A.; Jagannathan, P.; Mooley, K. P.; Intema, H. T.

    2016-10-01

    We have used the 150 MHz radio continuum survey (TGSS ADR) from the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope (GMRT) to search for phase-averaged emission toward all well-localized radio pulsars north of -53° decl. We detect emission toward 200 pulsars with high confidence (≥slant 5σ ) and another 88 pulsars at fainter levels. We show that most of our identifications are likely from pulsars, except for a small number where the measured flux density is confused by an associated supernova or pulsar-wind nebula, or a globular cluster. We investigate the radio properties of the 150 MHz sample and find an unusually high number of gamma-ray binary millisecond pulsars with very steep spectral indices. We also note a discrepancy in the measured flux densities between GMRT and LOFAR pulsar samples, suggesting that the flux density scale for the LOFAR pulsar sample may be in error by approximately a factor of two. We carry out a separate search of 30 well-localized gamma-ray, radio-quiet pulsars in an effort to detect a widening of the radio beam into the line of sight at lower frequencies. No steep-spectrum emission was detected either toward individual pulsars or in a weighted stack of all 30 images.

  19. A SEARCH FOR RAPIDLY SPINNING PULSARS AND FAST TRANSIENTS IN UNIDENTIFIED RADIO SOURCES WITH THE NRAO 43 METER TELESCOPE

    SciTech Connect

    Schmidt, Deborah; Crawford, Fronefield; Gilpin, Claire; Langston, Glen

    2013-04-15

    We have searched 75 unidentified radio sources selected from the NRAO VLA Sky Survey catalog for the presence of rapidly spinning pulsars and short, dispersed radio bursts. The sources are radio bright, have no identifications or optical source coincidences, are more than 5% linearly polarized, and are spatially unresolved in the catalog. If these sources are fast-spinning pulsars (e.g., sub-millisecond pulsars), previous large-scale pulsar surveys may have missed detection due to instrumental and computational limitations, eclipsing effects, or diffractive scintillation. The discovery of a sub-millisecond pulsar would significantly constrain the neutron star equation of state and would have implications for models predicting a rapid slowdown of highly recycled X-ray pulsars to millisecond periods from, e.g., accretion disk decoupling. These same sources were previously searched unsuccessfully for pulsations at 610 MHz with the Lovell Telescope at Jodrell Bank. This new search was conducted at a different epoch with a new 800 MHz backend on the NRAO 43 m Telescope at a center frequency of 1200 MHz. Our search was sensitive to sub-millisecond pulsars in highly accelerated binary systems and to short transient pulses. No periodic or transient signals were detected from any of the target sources. We conclude that diffractive scintillation, dispersive smearing, and binary acceleration are unlikely to have prevented detection of the large majority of the sources if they are pulsars, though we cannot rule out eclipsing, nulling or intermittent emission, or radio interference as possible factors for some non-detections. Other (speculative) possibilities for what these sources might include radio-emitting magnetic cataclysmic variables or older pulsars with aligned magnetic and spin axes.

  20. A Search for Rapidly Spinning Pulsars and Fast Transients in Unidentified Radio Sources with the NRAO 43 Meter Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmidt, Deborah; Crawford, Fronefield; Langston, Glen; Gilpin, Claire

    2013-04-01

    We have searched 75 unidentified radio sources selected from the NRAO VLA Sky Survey catalog for the presence of rapidly spinning pulsars and short, dispersed radio bursts. The sources are radio bright, have no identifications or optical source coincidences, are more than 5% linearly polarized, and are spatially unresolved in the catalog. If these sources are fast-spinning pulsars (e.g., sub-millisecond pulsars), previous large-scale pulsar surveys may have missed detection due to instrumental and computational limitations, eclipsing effects, or diffractive scintillation. The discovery of a sub-millisecond pulsar would significantly constrain the neutron star equation of state and would have implications for models predicting a rapid slowdown of highly recycled X-ray pulsars to millisecond periods from, e.g., accretion disk decoupling. These same sources were previously searched unsuccessfully for pulsations at 610 MHz with the Lovell Telescope at Jodrell Bank. This new search was conducted at a different epoch with a new 800 MHz backend on the NRAO 43 m Telescope at a center frequency of 1200 MHz. Our search was sensitive to sub-millisecond pulsars in highly accelerated binary systems and to short transient pulses. No periodic or transient signals were detected from any of the target sources. We conclude that diffractive scintillation, dispersive smearing, and binary acceleration are unlikely to have prevented detection of the large majority of the sources if they are pulsars, though we cannot rule out eclipsing, nulling or intermittent emission, or radio interference as possible factors for some non-detections. Other (speculative) possibilities for what these sources might include radio-emitting magnetic cataclysmic variables or older pulsars with aligned magnetic and spin axes.

  1. Delta XTE Lift and Mate at Complex 17A

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1995-01-01

    This NASA Kennedy Space Center (KSC) video release presents footage of the lift and mate of NASA's X-ray Timing Explorer (XTE) to a McDonnell Douglas Delta II rocket at Launch Complex 17A, Cape Canaveral Air Station. The video includes shots of the workcrews as well as wide angle views of the spacecraft in its launching position. The XTE was launched into a circular orbit with an altitude of 600 km and an inclination of 23 degrees on Dec. 30, 1995.

  2. POLARIZATION OBSERVATIONS OF 100 PULSARS AT 774 MHz BY THE GREEN BANK TELESCOPE

    SciTech Connect

    Han, J. L.; Demorest, P. B.; Van Straten, W.; Lyne, A. G.

    2009-04-15

    We report on polarimetric observations of 100 pulsars centered on 774 MHz, made using the Green Bank Telescope, presenting their polarization profiles and polarized flux densities and comparing them with previous observations when possible. For 67 pulsars, these are the first such measurements made. Polarization profiles of 8 millisecond-pulsars in our sample show wide profiles and flat position-angle curves. Strong linear polarization, sometimes approaching 100% of the total intensity, has been detected in all or a part of the average pulse profiles of some pulsars. In general, circular polarization is very weak, although it is observed to be extremely strong in the leading component of PSR J1920+2650. Sense reversal of circular polarization as a function of pulse phase has been detected from both core and other components of more than 20 pulsars. Any relationship between the spin-down luminosity and the percentage of linear polarization is not evident in our data at this frequency.

  3. Pulsars in binary systems: probing binary stellar evolution and general relativity.

    PubMed

    Stairs, Ingrid H

    2004-04-23

    Radio pulsars in binary orbits often have short millisecond spin periods as a result of mass transfer from their companion stars. They therefore act as very precise, stable, moving clocks that allow us to investigate a large set of otherwise inaccessible astrophysical problems. The orbital parameters derived from high-precision binary pulsar timing provide constraints on binary evolution, characteristics of the binary pulsar population, and the masses of neutron stars with different mass-transfer histories. These binary systems also test gravitational theories, setting strong limits on deviations from general relativity. Surveys for new pulsars yield new binary systems that increase our understanding of all these fields and may open up whole new areas of physics, as most spectacularly evidenced by the recent discovery of an extremely relativistic double-pulsar system.

  4. Black Widow Pulsar radiation hydrodynamics simulation using Castro: Methodology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrios Sazo, Maria; Zingale, Michael; Zhang, Weiqun

    2017-01-01

    A black widow pulsar (BWP) is a millisecond pulsar in a tight binary system with a low mass star. The fast rotating pulsar emits intense radiation, which injects energy and ablates the companion star. Observation of the ablation is seen as pulsar eclipses caused by a larger object than the companion star Roche lobe. This phenomenon is attributed to a cloud surrounding the evaporating star. We will present the methodology for modeling the interaction between the radiation coming from the pulsar and the companion star using the radiation hydrodynamics code Castro. Castro is an adaptive mesh refinement (AMR) code that solves the compressible hydrodynamic equations for astrophysical flows with simultaneous refinement in space and time. The code also includes self-gravity, nuclear reactions and radiation. We are employing the gray-radiation solver, which uses a mixed-frame formulation of radiation hydrodynamics under the flux-limited diffusion approximation. In our setup, we are modeling the companion star with the radiation field as a boundary condition, coming from one side of the domain. In addition to a model setup in 2-d axisymmetry, we also have a 3-d setup, which is more physical given the nature of the system considering the companion is facing the pulsar on one side. We discuss the progress of our calculations, first results, and future work.The work at Stony Brook was supported by DOE/Office of Nuclear Physics grant DE-FG02-87ER40317

  5. Single Pulse Searches for Pulsars in the Galactic Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cushey, Daniel Joseph; Majid, Walid A.; Prince, Thomas Allen

    2017-01-01

    The discovery of the magnetar J1745-2900 within 3'' of Sgr A* by Mori et al. (2013) has renewed strong interest in Galactic Center (GC) pulsars and motivated expanded searches for their pulses due to their extensive applications to gravitational and plasma physics. There are currently 5 known pulsars within 15' of the Sgr A*; however, gamma ray excesses from the GC suggest a source population of 102-103 millisecond pulsars within the same region. Although this discrepancy is readily explained by the hyper-strong scattering environment of the GC which obscures pulses, the discovery of J1745-2900 challenges this attribution and further observations and analysis are needed to reconcile the observed GC pulsar population with theory. We present a pipeline developed to search for these "missing" GC pulsars using a single pulse search algorithm. Observations of the GC using the Deep Space Network 70m antenna were taken in the high frequency regime in order to minimize scattering, and search parameters were calibrated using pulses from RRAT J1819-1458. Any detected pulses that are distinct from those of J1745-2900 warrant extensive follow-up observations and analysis, and confirmed new members of the elusive GC pulsar population would be incredibly valuable as probes of the GC's magnetic and potential fields.

  6. A STACKED ANALYSIS OF 115 PULSARS OBSERVED BY THE FERMI LAT

    SciTech Connect

    McCann, A.

    2015-05-10

    Due to the low gamma-ray fluxes from pulsars above 50 GeV and the small collecting area of space-based telescopes, the gamma-ray emission discovered by the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT) in ∼150 pulsars is largely unexplored at these energies. In this regime, the uncertainties on the spectral data points and/or the constraints from upper limits are not sufficient to provide robust tests of competing emission models in individual pulsars. The discovery of power-law-type emission from the Crab pulsar at energies exceeding 100 GeV provides a compelling justification for exploration of other pulsars at these energies. We applied the method of aperture photometry to measure pulsar emission spectra from Fermi-LAT data and present a stacked analysis of 115 pulsars selected from the Second Fermi-LAT catalog of gamma-ray pulsars. This analysis, which uses an average of ∼4.2 yr of data per pulsar, aggregates low-level emission which cannot be resolved in individual objects but can be detected in an ensemble. We find no significant stacked excess at energies above 50 GeV. An upper limit of 30% of the Crab pulsar level is found for the average flux from 115 pulsars in the 100–177 GeV energy range at the 95% confidence level. Stacked searches exclusive to the young pulsar sample, the millisecond pulsar sample, and several other promising sub-samples also return no significant excesses above 50 GeV.

  7. Pulsar timing arrays: closing in on low- frequency gravitational waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sampson, Laura

    2017-01-01

    Just like electromagnetic radiation, gravitational waves come in a wide spectrum of frequencies. Different frequencies give us access to different physical information about our universe. By taking advantage of the phenomenal stability of the spin rate of millisecond pulsars, pulsar timing arrays will allow us to detect gravitational waves in the nanohertz band. The most likely source in this band is supermassive black hole binaries, formed when galaxies merge, and so the detection of these gravitational waves gives us a new tool to learn about the merger history of galaxies and the environment in galactic cores. I will discuss the exciting astrophysics we can learn using pulsar timing arrays, as well as the prospects and expected timeline for gravitational wave detection in this new frequency regime.

  8. Probing the origin of Pulsar wind with a Black widow pulsar 2FGL J2339.6-0532

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yatsu, Yoichi; Shibata, Shinpei; Kawai, Nobuyuki; Kataoka, Jun; Saito, Yoshihiko

    Multi-wavelength observations of a black widow binary system 2FGL2339.6-0532 are presented. Black widow pulsars are believed to be in the intermediate stage between LMXB and isolated millisecond pulsars(MSPs). In a typical black widow system, the recycled MSP is evaporating up its companion star by the powerful pulsar wind. Fermi gamma-ray source 2FGL2339.6-0532 is recently categorized as an black widow pulsar. It possesses a K-star companion orbiting at a period of 4.63 h that corresponds to an orbit radius of about 10(11) cm for a standard NS mass. Our optical observations utilizing OISTER show clear sinusoidal light curves at various wavelength covering Ks B band. Phase resolved SED precisely constrained the size of the companion star and temperature. X-ray spectra taken with Suzaku revealed steady soft X-ray excess below 1 keV energy range that may be originated in blackbody emission from the neutron surface. While In hard X-ray energy band the X-ray light curve shows double peak modulation synchronized with the orbital motion indicating that the hard X-ray may be from the surface of the companion star. To explain the hard X-ray behavior we examined a simple geometry and estimated the physical state of the pulsar wind at immediate vicinity of the light cylinder of the pulsar.

  9. THE GREEN BANK TELESCOPE 350 MHz DRIFT-SCAN SURVEY II: DATA ANALYSIS AND THE TIMING OF 10 NEW PULSARS, INCLUDING A RELATIVISTIC BINARY

    SciTech Connect

    Lynch, Ryan S.; Kaspi, Victoria M.; Archibald, Anne M.; Karako-Argaman, Chen; Boyles, Jason; Lorimer, Duncan R.; McLaughlin, Maura A.; Cardoso, Rogerio F.; Ransom, Scott M.; Stairs, Ingrid H.; Berndsen, Aaron; Cherry, Angus; McPhee, Christie A.; Hessels, Jason W. T.; Kondratiev, Vladislav I.; Van Leeuwen, Joeri; Epstein, Courtney R.; Pennucci, Tim; Roberts, Mallory S. E.; Stovall, Kevin

    2013-02-15

    We have completed a 350 MHz Drift-scan Survey using the Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope with the goal of finding new radio pulsars, especially millisecond pulsars that can be timed to high precision. This survey covered {approx}10,300 deg{sup 2} and all of the data have now been fully processed. We have discovered a total of 31 new pulsars, 7 of which are recycled pulsars. A companion paper by Boyles et al. describes the survey strategy, sky coverage, and instrumental setup, and presents timing solutions for the first 13 pulsars. Here we describe the data analysis pipeline, survey sensitivity, and follow-up observations of new pulsars, and present timing solutions for 10 other pulsars. We highlight several sources-two interesting nulling pulsars, an isolated millisecond pulsar with a measurement of proper motion, and a partially recycled pulsar, PSR J0348+0432, which has a white dwarf companion in a relativistic orbit. PSR J0348+0432 will enable unprecedented tests of theories of gravity.

  10. Bow-shock pulsar-wind nebulae passing through density discontinuities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoon, Doosoo; Heinz, Sebastian

    2017-01-01

    Bow-shock pulsar-wind nebulae are a subset of pulsar-wind nebulae that form when the pulsar has high velocity due to the natal kick during the supernova explosion. The interaction between the relativistic wind from the fast-moving pulsar and the interstellar medium produces a bow-shock and a trail, which are detectable in Hα emission. Among such bow-shock pulsar-wind nebulae, the Guitar Nebula stands out for its peculiar morphology, which consists of a prominent bow-shock head and a series of bubbles further behind. We present a scenario in which multiple bubbles can be produced when the pulsar encounters a series of density discontinuities in the ISM. We tested the scenario using 2D and 3D hydrodynamic simulations. The shape of the Guitar Nebula can be reproduced if the pulsar traversed a region of declining low density. We also show that if a pulsar encounters an inclined density discontinuity, it produces an asymmetric bow-shock head, consistent with observations of the bow-shock of the millisecond pulsar J2124-3358.

  11. Pulsar time scale

    SciTech Connect

    Il'in, V.G.; Llyasov, Yu.P.; Kuz'min, A.D.; Pushkin, S.B.; Palii, G.N.; Shabanova, T.V.; Shchitov, Yu.P.

    1984-05-01

    In this article a new time scale is proposed, that of pulsar time PT which is based on the regular sequence of time intervals between pulses of a pulsar's radio emissions. In discussing variations in the arrival times of pulsar radio emissions, three kinds of variations in the radiation periods are described. PSR 0834 + 06 is used as the basic reference pulsar. Time scales are also determined for reference pulsars PSR 0905 + 08 and 1919 + 21. The initial parameters for the three reference pulsars needed for managing a PT scale are presented. The basic PT scale is defined as the continuous sequence of time intervals between radio-emission pulses of the basic reference pulsar.

  12. Delta XTE Spacecraft Arrives at CCAS Skid Strip

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1995-01-01

    Footage shows the U.S Air Force Aircraft "Air Mobility Command" approaching, and landing at the Cape Canaveral Air Station Skid Strip (CCAS). The truck carrying the Delta XTE Spacecraft is also shown as it leaves the Air Mobility Command.

  13. From FERMI-LAT observations to the blind pulsar survey SPAN512 with the Nançay Radio Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Octau, F.; Desvignes, G.; Cognard, I.; Champion, D.; Lazarus, P.; Smith, D.; Theureau, G.

    2016-12-01

    Since the discovery of the first pulsar in 1967, we know over 2500 pulsars today. Pulsars offer a broad range of studies: from the study of the properties of interstellar medium and of pulsar magnetospheres up to test of gravity in the strong-field regime and the characterisation of the cosmological Gravitation Wave Background. This explains why we keep searching for pulsars nowadays. Such focus was initiated at the Nançay Radio Telescope (NRT) with the observation of unidentified Fermi-LAT sources, which led to the quick discovery of three new millisecond pulsars. In 2012, a blind pulsar survey called SPAN512 (in reference to the large bandwidth of 512 MHz) was initiated and the NRT began to observe the low galactic latitude sky at 1.4 GHz. This survey is still in progress (≈90% of the observations have been made) and, up to now, it has led to the discovery of three pulsars, two of them with millisecond spin periods.

  14. Accretion onto Fast X-Ray Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rappaport, S. A.; Fregeau, J. M.; Spruit, H.

    2004-01-01

    The recent emergence of a new class of accretion-powered, transient, millisecond X-ray pulsars presents some difficulties for the conventional picture of accretion onto rapidly rotating magnetized neutron stars and their spin behavior during outbursts. In particular, it is not clear that the standard paradigm can accommodate the wide range in M(i.e., approx. greater than a factor of 50) over which these systems manage to accrete and the high rate of spindown that the neutron stars exhibit in at least a number of cases. When the accretion rate drops sufficiently, the X-ray pulsar is said to become a "fast rotator," and in the conventional view, this is accompanied by a transition from accretion to "propellering," in which accretion ceases and the matter is ejected from the system. On the theoretical side, we note that this scenario for the onset of propellering cannot be entirely correct because it is not energetically self-consistent. We show that, instead, the transition is likely to take place through disks that combine accretion with spindown and terminate at the corotation radius. We demonstrate the existence of such disk solutions by modifying the Shakura-Sunyaev equations with a simple magnetic torque prescription. The solutions are completely analytic and have the same dependence on M and a (the viscosity parameter) as the original Shakura-Sunyaev solutions, but the radial profiles can be considerably modified, depending on the degree of fastness. We apply these results to compute the torques expected during the outbursts of the transient millisecond pulsars and find that we can explain the large spin-down rates that are observed for quite plausible surface magnetic fields of approx. 10(exp 90 G.

  15. Towards robust gravitational wave detection with pulsar timing arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cornish, Neil J.; Sampson, Laura

    2016-05-01

    Precision timing of highly stable millisecond pulsars is a promising technique for the detection of very low frequency sources of gravitational waves. In any single pulsar, a stochastic gravitational wave signal appears as an additional source of timing noise that can be absorbed by the noise model, and so it is only by considering the coherent response across a network of pulsars that the signal can be distinguished from other sources of noise. In the limit where there are many gravitational wave sources in the sky, or many pulsars in the array, the signals produce a unique tensor correlation pattern that depends only on the angular separation between each pulsar pair. It is this distinct fingerprint that is used to search for gravitational waves using pulsar timing arrays. Here we consider how the prospects for detection are diminished when the statistical isotropy of the timing array or the gravitational wave signal is broken by having a finite number of pulsars and a finite number of sources. We find the standard tensor-correlation analysis to be remarkably robust, with a mild impact on detectability compared to the isotropic limit. Only when there are very few sources and very few pulsars does the standard analysis begin to fail. Having established that the tensor correlations are a robust signature for detection, we study the use of "sky scrambles" to break the correlations as a way to increase confidence in a detection. This approach is analogous to the use of "time slides" in the analysis of data from ground-based interferometric detectors.

  16. WIDE RADIO BEAMS FROM {gamma}-RAY PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Ravi, V.; Manchester, R. N.; Hobbs, G.

    2010-06-10

    We investigate the radio and {gamma}-ray beaming properties of normal and millisecond pulsars (MSPs) by selecting two samples from the known populations. The first, Sample G, contains pulsars which are detectable in blind searches of {gamma}-ray data from the Fermi Large Area Telescope. The second, Sample R, contains pulsars detectable in blind radio searches which have spin-down luminosities E>10{sup 34} erg s{sup -1}. We analyze the fraction of the {gamma}-ray-selected Sample G which have detectable radio pulses and the fraction of the radio-selected Sample R which have detectable {gamma}-ray pulses. Twenty of our 35 Sample G pulsars have already observed radio pulses. This rules out low-altitude polar-cap beaming models if, as is currently believed, {gamma}-ray beams are generated in the outer magnetosphere and are very wide. We further find that, for the highest-E pulsars, the radio and {gamma}-ray beams have comparable beaming factors, i.e., the beams cover similar regions of the sky as the star rotates. For lower-E {gamma}-ray emitting pulsars, the radio beams have about half of the {gamma}-ray sky coverage. These results suggest that, for high-E young and MSPs, the radio emission originates in wide beams from regions high in the pulsar magnetosphere, probably close to the null-charge surface and to the {gamma}-ray emitting regions. Furthermore, it suggests that for these high-E pulsars, as in the {gamma}-ray case, features in the radio profile represent caustics in the emission beam pattern.

  17. Pulsar Magnetospheres: Beyond the Flat Spacetime Dipole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gralla, Samuel E.; Lupsasca, Alexandru; Philippov, Alexander

    2016-12-01

    Most studies of the pulsar magnetosphere have assumed a pure magnetic dipole in flat spacetime. However, recent work suggests that the effects of general relativity are in fact of vital importance and that realistic pulsar magnetic fields will have a significant nondipolar component. We introduce a general analytical method for studying the axisymmetric force-free magnetosphere of a slowly rotating star of arbitrary magnetic field, mass, radius, and moment of inertia, including all the effects of general relativity. We confirm that spacelike current is generically present in the polar caps (suggesting a pair production region), irrespective of the stellar magnetic field. We show that general relativity introduces a ∼ 60 % correction to the formula for the dipolar component of the surface magnetic field inferred from spindown. Finally, we show that the location and shape of the polar caps can be modified dramatically by even modestly strong higher moments. This can affect emission processes occurring near the star and may help explain the modified beam characteristics of millisecond pulsars.

  18. The PALFA Survey: Going to great depths to find radio pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lazarus, P.

    2013-03-01

    The on-going PALFA survey is searching the Galactic plane (|b| < 5°, 32° < l < 77° and 168° < l < 214°) for radio pulsars at 1.4 GHz using ALFA, the 7-beam receiver installed at the Arecibo Observatory. By the end of August 2012, the PALFA survey has discovered 100 pulsars, including 17 millisecond pulsars (P < 30 ms). Many of these discoveries are among the pulsars with the largest DM/P ratios, proving that the PALFA survey is capable of probing the Galactic plane for millisecond pulsars to a much greater depth than any previous survey. This is due to the survey's high sensitivity, relatively high observing frequency, and its high time and frequency resolution. Recently the rate of discoveries has increased, due to a new more sensitive spectrometer, two updated complementary search pipelines, the development of online collaborative tools, and access to new computing resources. Looking forward, focus has shifted to the application of artificial intelligence systems to identify pulsar-like candidates, and the development of an improved full-resolution pipeline incorporating more sophisticated radio interference rejection. The new pipeline will be used in a complete second analysis of data already taken, and will be applied to future survey observations. An overview of recent developments, and highlights of exciting discoveries will be presented.

  19. THE GALACTIC POPULATION OF YOUNG {gamma}-RAY PULSARS

    SciTech Connect

    Watters, Kyle P.; Romani, Roger W. E-mail: rwr@astro.stanford.edu

    2011-02-01

    We have simulated a Galactic population of young pulsars and compared with the Fermi LAT sample, constraining the birth properties, beaming and evolution of these spin-powered objects. Using quantitative tests of agreement with the distributions of observed spin and pulse properties, we find that short birth periods P{sub 0} {approx} 50 ms and {gamma}-ray beams arising in the outer magnetosphere, dominated by a single pole, are strongly preferred. The modeled relative numbers of radio-detected and radio-quiet objects agrees well with the data. Although the sample is local, extrapolation to the full Galaxy implies a {gamma}-ray pulsar birthrate 1/(59 yr). This is shown to be in good agreement with the estimated Galactic core collapse rate and with the local density of OB star progenitors. We give predictions for the numbers of expected young pulsar detections if Fermi LAT observations continue 10 years. In contrast to the potentially significant contribution of unresolved millisecond pulsars, we find that young pulsars should contribute little to the Galactic {gamma}-ray background.

  20. Observations of pulsar microstructure with the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de, Kishalay; Gupta, Yashwant; Sharma, Prateek

    2017-01-01

    Microstructure emission, involving short time scale intensity fluctuations in subpulse emission, is well known in normal pulsars. However, the high time resolution and sensitivity required to detect these features has limited such studies to only few pulsars, mostly in the northern sky. The Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope (GMRT), owing to its high sensitivity, extensive sky coverage and frequency coverage at low frequencies is an attractive prospect for high time resolution single pulse studies of pulsars. In this paper, we present results from an extensive statistical analysis of the polarization (with single frequency observations) and spectral (with simultaneous dual-frequency observations) properties of microstructure emission in pulsars observed with the GMRT. We further present the first detections of quasi-periodic microstructure emission from millisecond pulsars (MSPs), in GMRT observations of two MSPs at 325 and 610 MHz. We thus extend the microstructure timescale - rotation period relationship by more than an order of magnitude, down to a rotation period of 5 ms. We discuss the physical implications of our results, pointing to a radial / temporal modulation origin of microstructure emission as a likely explanation for the observed characteristics.

  1. Revised Pulsar Spindown

    SciTech Connect

    Contopoulos, Ioannis; Spitkovsky, Anatoly; /KIPAC, Menlo Park

    2005-12-14

    We address the issue of electromagnetic pulsar spindown by combining our experience from the two limiting idealized cases which have been studied in great extent in the past: that of an aligned rotator where ideal MHD conditions apply, and that of a misaligned rotator in vacuum. We construct a spindown formula that takes into account the misalignment of the magnetic and rotation axes, and the magnetospheric particle acceleration gaps. We show that near the death line aligned rotators spin down much slower than orthogonal ones. In order to test this approach, we use a simple Monte Carlo method to simulate the evolution of pulsars and find a good fit to the observed pulsar distribution in the P-{dot P} diagram without invoking magnetic field decay. Our model may also account for individual pulsars spinning down with braking index n < 3, by allowing the corotating part of the magnetosphere to end inside the light cylinder. We discuss the role of magnetic reconnection in determining the pulsar braking index. We show, however, that n {approx} 3 remains a good approximation for the pulsar population as a whole. Moreover, we predict that pulsars near the death line have braking index values n > 3, and that the older pulsar population has preferentially smaller magnetic inclination angles. We discuss possible signatures of such alignment in the existing pulsar data.

  2. Magnetic pair creation transparency in gamma-ray pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Story, Sarah A.; Baring, Matthew G. E-mail: baring@rice.edu

    2014-07-20

    Magnetic pair creation, γ → e {sup +} e {sup –}, has been at the core of radio pulsar paradigms and central to polar cap models of gamma-ray pulsars for over three decades. The Fermi gamma-ray pulsar population now exceeds 140 sources and has defined an important part of Fermi's science legacy, providing rich information for the interpretation of young energetic pulsars and old millisecond pulsars. Among the population characteristics well established is the common occurrence of exponential turnovers in their spectra in the 1-10 GeV range. These turnovers are too gradual to arise from magnetic pair creation in the strong magnetic fields of pulsar inner magnetospheres. By demanding insignificant photon attenuation precipitated by such single-photon pair creation, the energies of these turnovers for Fermi pulsars can be used to compute lower bounds for the typical altitude of GeV band emission. This paper explores such pair transparency constraints below the turnover energy and updates earlier altitude bound determinations that have been deployed in various Fermi pulsar papers. For low altitude emission locales, general relativistic influences are found to be important, increasing cumulative opacity, shortening the photon attenuation lengths, and also reducing the maximum energy that permits escape of photons from a neutron star magnetosphere. Rotational aberration influences are also explored, and are found to be small at low altitudes, except near the magnetic pole. The analysis presented in this paper clearly demonstrates that including near-threshold physics in the pair creation rate is essential to deriving accurate attenuation lengths and escape energies. The altitude bounds are typically in the range of 2-7 stellar radii for the young Fermi pulsar population, and provide key information on the emission altitude in radio quiet pulsars that do not possess double-peaked pulse profiles. The bound for the Crab pulsar is at a much higher altitude, with the

  3. Observational properties of pulsars.

    PubMed

    Manchester, R N

    2004-04-23

    Pulsars are remarkable clocklike celestial sources that are believed to be rotating neutron stars formed in supernova explosions. They are valuable tools for investigations into topics such as neutron star interiors, globular cluster dynamics, the structure of the interstellar medium, and gravitational physics. Searches at radio and x-ray wavelengths over the past 5 years have resulted in a large increase in the number of known pulsars and the discovery of new populations of pulsars, posing challenges to theories of binary and stellar evolution. Recent images at radio, optical, and x-ray wavelengths have revealed structures resulting from the interaction of pulsar winds with the surrounding interstellar medium, giving new insights into the physics of pulsars.

  4. Newly Commissioned Green Bank Telescope Bags New Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2002-01-01

    Astronomers using the National Science Foundation's newly commissioned Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) have discovered a windfall of three previously undetected millisecond pulsars in a dense cluster of stars in the Milky Way Galaxy. The Green Bank Telescope The Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope "This globular cluster, known as Messier 62, has been very well studied, and it would have been an exciting discovery to find just one new pulsar. The fact that we were able to detect three new pulsars at one time is simply remarkable," said Bryan Jacoby, a graduate student at the California Institute of Technology who led the research team. Results of the discovery were recently announced in an International Astronomical Union Circular. Jacoby and his colleague Adam Chandler, also a graduate student at Caltech, used the GBT to search for new pulsars in addition to the three already known in this cluster. Their research was part of the GBT's Early Science Program, which allows scientific investigations during the testing and commissioning of the telescope. The researchers used the Berkeley-Caltech Pulsar Machine, a new instrument whose development was overseen by Donald Backer at the University of California at Berkeley, to process the signals from the GBT and record them for later analysis. After their data were analyzed, the researchers discovered the telltale signatures of three additional pulsars and their white dwarf companion stars. Pulsars are rapidly rotating neutron stars that emit intense beams of radio waves along their misaligned magnetic axes. When these beams intersect the Earth, we see the pulsar flash on and off. Due to their exquisitely steady rotation, pulsars allow astronomers to study the basic laws of physics and the ways in which these dense clusters and exotic stellar systems are formed. Astronomers study globular clusters because they are among the oldest building blocks of our Galaxy. With their very dense stellar populations, these

  5. Key Science with the Square Kilometer Array: Strong-field Tests of Gravity using Pulsars and Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cordes, J. M.; Kramer, M.; Backer, D. C.; Lazio, T. J. W.; Science Working Groupthe Square Kilometer Array Team

    2005-12-01

    A Galactic census of pulsars with the SKA will discover most of the active pulsars in the Galaxy beamed toward us. The sheer number of pulsars discovered, along with the exceptional timing precision the SKA can provide, will revolutionize the field of pulsar astrophysics and will enable significant tests of theories of gravity. Census discoveries will almost certainly include pulsar-black hole binaries as well as pulsars orbiting the super-massive black hole in the Galactic center. These systems provide unique opportunties for probing the ultra-strong field limit of relativistic gravity and will complement future gravitational wave detections using LISA-like instruments. SKA measurements can be used to test the Cosmic Censorship Conjecture and the No-Hair theorem. The large number of millisecond pulsars discovered with the SKA will also provide a dense array of precision clocks on the sky that can be used as multiple arms of a cosmic gravitational wave detector, which can be used to detect and measure the stochastic cosmological gravitational wave background that is expected from a number of sources. In addition to gravitational tests, the large number of lines of sight will provide a detailed map of the Galaxy's electron density and magnetic fields and important information on the dynamics and evolutionary histories of neutron stars. The census will provide examples of nearly every possible outcome of the evolution of massive stars, including (as above) pulsar black-hole systems and sub-millisecond pulsars, if they exist. These objects will yield constraints on the equation of state of matter at super-nuclear densities. Masses of pulsars and their binary companions planets, white dwarfs, other neutron stars, and black holes will be determined to ˜ 1% for hundreds of objects. The SKA will also provide partial censuses of nearby galaxies through periodicity and giant-pulse detections, yielding important information on the intergalactic medium.

  6. Glitches in southern pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, N.; Manchester, R. N.; Pace, R. T.; Bailes, M.; Kaspi, V. M.; Stappers, B. W.; Lyne, A. G.

    2000-10-01

    Timing observations of 40 mostly young pulsars using the ATNF Parkes radio telescope between 1990 January and 1998 December are reported. In total, 20 previously unreported glitches and 10 other glitches were detected in 11 pulsars. These included 12 glitches in PSR J1341-6220, corresponding to a glitch rate of 1.5 glitches per year. We also detected the largest known glitch, in PSR J1614-5047, with Δνgν~6.5×10-6, where ν=1/P is the pulse frequency. Glitch parameters were determined both by extrapolating timing solutions to interglitch intervals and by phase-coherent timing fits across the glitch(es). These fits also give improved positions and dispersion measures for many of the pulsars. Analysis of glitch parameters, both from this work and from previously published results, shows that most glitches have a fractional amplitude Δνgν of between 10-8 and 10-6. There is no consistent relationship between glitch amplitude and the time since the previous glitch or the time to the following glitch, either for the ensemble or for individual pulsars. As previously recognized, the largest glitch activity is seen in pulsars with ages of order 104yr, but for about 30per cent of such pulsars, no glitches were detected in the 8-year data span. There is some evidence for a new type of timing irregularity in which there is a significant increase in pulse frequency over a few days, accompanied by a decrease in the magnitude of the slow-down rate. Fits of an exponential recovery to post-glitch data show that for most older pulsars, only a small fraction of the glitch decays. In some younger pulsars a large fraction of the glitch decays, but in others there is very little decay. Apart from the Crab pulsar, there is no clear dependence of recovery time-scale on pulsar age.

  7. A state change in the missing link binary pulsar system PSR J1023+0038

    SciTech Connect

    Stappers, B. W.; Lyne, A. G.; Archibald, A. M.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Bassa, C. G.; Janssen, G. H.; Bogdanov, S.; Kaspi, V. M.; Patruno, A.; Tendulkar, S.; Hill, A. B.; Glanzman, T.

    2014-07-20

    We present radio and γ-ray observations, which, along with concurrent X-ray observations, reveal that the binary millisecond pulsar (MSP)/low-mass X-ray binary transition system PSR J1023+0038 has undergone a transformation in state. Whereas until recently the system harbored a bright millisecond radio pulsar, the radio pulsations at frequencies between 300 to 5000 MHz have now become undetectable. Concurrent with this radio disappearance, the γ-ray flux of the system has quintupled. We conclude that, though the radio pulsar is currently not detectable, the pulsar mechanism is still active and the pulsar wind, as well as a newly formed accretion disk, are together providing the necessary conditions to create the γ-ray increase. This system is the first example of a compact, low-mass binary which has shown significant state changes accompanied by large changes in γ-ray flux; it will continue to provide an exceptional test bed for better understanding the formation of MSPs as well as accretion onto neutron stars in general.

  8. Reverse shock emission driven by post-merger millisecond magnetar winds: Effects of the magnetization parameter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, L. D.; Wang, L. J.; Dai, Z. G.

    2016-08-01

    The study of short-duration gamma-ray bursts provides growing evidence that a good fraction of double neutron star mergers lead to the formation of stable millisecond magnetars. The launch of Poynting flux by the millisecond magnetars could leave distinct electromagnetic signatures that reveal the energy dissipation processes in the magnetar wind. In previous studies, we assume that the magnetar wind becomes completely lepton-dominated so that electrons/positrons in the magnetar wind are accelerated by a diffusive shock. However, theoretical modeling of pulsar wind nebulae shows that in many cases the magnetic field energy in the pulsar wind may be strong enough to suppress diffusive shock acceleration. In this paper, we investigate the reverse shock emission and the forward shock emission with an arbitrary magnetization parameter σ of a magnetar wind. We find that the reverse shock emission strongly depends on σ, and in particular that σ ~ 0.3 leads to the strongest reverse shock emission. Future observations would be helpful to diagnose the composition of the magnetar wind.

  9. Gravitational Waves from Known Pulsars: Results from the Initial Detector Era

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aasi, J.; Abadie, J.; Abbott, B. P.; Abbott, R.; Abbott, T.; Abernathy, M. R.; Accadia, T.; Acernese, F.; Adams, C.; Adams, T.; Adhikari, R. X.; Affeldt, C.; Agathos, M.; Aggarwal, N.; Aguiar, O. D.; Ajith, P.; Allen, B.; Allocca, A.; Amador Ceron, E.; Amariutei, D.; Anderson, R. A.; Anderson, S. B.; Anderson, W. G.; Arai, K.; Araya, M. C.; Arceneaux, C.; Areeda, J.; Ast, S.; Aston, S. M.; Astone, P.; Aufmuth, P.; Aulbert, C.; Austin, L.; Aylott, B. E.; Babak, S.; Baker, P. T.; Ballardin, G.; Ballmer, S. W.; Barayoga, J. C.; Barker, D.; Barnum, S. H.; Barone, F.; Barr, B.; Barsotti, L.; Barsuglia, M.; Barton, M. A.; Bartos, I.; Bassiri, R.; Basti, A.; Batch, J.; Bauchrowitz, J.; Bauer, Th. S.; Bebronne, M.; Behnke, B.; Bejger, M.; Beker, M. G.; Bell, A. S.; Bell, C.; Belopolski, I.; Bergmann, G.; Berliner, J. M.; Bersanetti, D.; Bertolini, A.; Bessis, D.; Betzwieser, J.; Beyersdorf, P. T.; Bhadbhade, T.; Bilenko, I. A.; Billingsley, G.; Birch, J.; Bitossi, M.; Bizouard, M. A.; Black, E.; Blackburn, J. K.; Blackburn, L.; Blair, D.; Blom, M.; Bock, O.; Bodiya, T. P.; Boer, M.; Bogan, C.; Bond, C.; Bondu, F.; Bonelli, L.; Bonnand, R.; Bork, R.; Born, M.; Boschi, V.; Bose, S.; Bosi, L.; Bowers, J.; Bradaschia, C.; Brady, P. R.; Braginsky, V. B.; Branchesi, M.; Brannen, C. A.; Brau, J. E.; Breyer, J.; Briant, T.; Bridges, D. O.; Brillet, A.; Brinkmann, M.; Brisson, V.; Britzger, M.; Brooks, A. F.; Brown, D. A.; Brown, D. D.; Brückner, F.; Bulik, T.; Bulten, H. J.; Buonanno, A.; Buskulic, D.; Buy, C.; Byer, R. L.; Cadonati, L.; Cagnoli, G.; Calderón Bustillo, J.; Calloni, E.; Camp, J. B.; Campsie, P.; Cannon, K. C.; Canuel, B.; Cao, J.; Capano, C. D.; Carbognani, F.; Carbone, L.; Caride, S.; Castiglia, A.; Caudill, S.; Cavaglià, M.; Cavalier, F.; Cavalieri, R.; Cella, G.; Cepeda, C.; Cesarini, E.; Chakraborty, R.; Chalermsongsak, T.; Chao, S.; Charlton, P.; Chassande-Mottin, E.; Chen, X.; Chen, Y.; Chincarini, A.; Chiummo, A.; Cho, H. S.; Chow, J.; Christensen, N.; Chu, Q.; Chua, S. S. Y.; Chung, S.; Ciani, G.; Clara, F.; Clark, D. E.; Clark, J. A.; Cleva, F.; Coccia, E.; Cohadon, P.-F.; Colla, A.; Colombini, M.; Constancio, M., Jr.; Conte, A.; Conte, R.; Cook, D.; Corbitt, T. R.; Cordier, M.; Cornish, N.; Corsi, A.; Costa, C. A.; Coughlin, M. W.; Coulon, J.-P.; Countryman, S.; Couvares, P.; Coward, D. M.; Cowart, M.; Coyne, D. C.; Craig, K.; Creighton, J. D. E.; Creighton, T. D.; Crowder, S. G.; Cumming, A.; Cunningham, L.; Cuoco, E.; Dahl, K.; Dal Canton, T.; Damjanic, M.; Danilishin, S. L.; D'Antonio, S.; Danzmann, K.; Dattilo, V.; Daudert, B.; Daveloza, H.; Davier, M.; Davies, G. S.; Daw, E. J.; Day, R.; Dayanga, T.; De Rosa, R.; Debreczeni, G.; Degallaix, J.; Del Pozzo, W.; Deleeuw, E.; Deléglise, S.; Denker, T.; Dent, T.; Dereli, H.; Dergachev, V.; DeRosa, R.; DeSalvo, R.; Dhurandhar, S.; Di Fiore, L.; Di Lieto, A.; Di Palma, I.; Di Virgilio, A.; Díaz, M.; Dietz, A.; Dmitry, K.; Donovan, F.; Dooley, K. L.; Doravari, S.; Drago, M.; Drever, R. W. P.; Driggers, J. C.; Du, Z.; Dumas, J.-C.; Dwyer, S.; Eberle, T.; Edwards, M.; Effler, A.; Ehrens, P.; Eichholz, J.; Eikenberry, S. S.; Endrőczi, G.; Essick, R.; Etzel, T.; Evans, K.; Evans, M.; Evans, T.; Factourovich, M.; Fafone, V.; Fairhurst, S.; Fang, Q.; Farinon, S.; Farr, B.; Farr, W.; Favata, M.; Fazi, D.; Fehrmann, H.; Feldbaum, D.; Ferrante, I.; Ferrini, F.; Fidecaro, F.; Finn, L. S.; Fiori, I.; Fisher, R.; Flaminio, R.; Foley, E.; Foley, S.; Forsi, E.; Fotopoulos, N.; Fournier, J.-D.; Franco, S.; Frasca, S.; Frasconi, F.; Frede, M.; Frei, M.; Frei, Z.; Freise, A.; Frey, R.; Fricke, T. T.; Fritschel, P.; Frolov, V. V.; Fujimoto, M.-K.; Fulda, P.; Fyffe, M.; Gair, J.; Gammaitoni, L.; Garcia, J.; Garufi, F.; Gehrels, N.; Gemme, G.; Genin, E.; Gennai, A.; Gergely, L.; Ghosh, S.; Giaime, J. A.; Giampanis, S.; Giardina, K. D.; Giazotto, A.; Gil-Casanova, S.; Gill, C.; Gleason, J.; Goetz, E.; Goetz, R.; Gondan, L.; González, G.; Gordon, N.; Gorodetsky, M. L.; Gossan, S.; Goßler, S.; Gouaty, R.; Graef, C.; Graff, P. B.; Granata, M.; Grant, A.; Gras, S.; Gray, C.; Greenhalgh, R. J. S.; Gretarsson, A. M.; Griffo, C.; Groot, P.; Grote, H.; Grover, K.; Grunewald, S.; Guidi, G. M.; Guido, C.; Gushwa, K. E.; Gustafson, E. K.; Gustafson, R.; Hall, B.; Hall, E.; Hammer, D.; Hammond, G.; Hanke, M.; Hanks, J.; Hanna, C.; Hanson, J.; Harms, J.; Harry, G. M.; Harry, I. W.; Harstad, E. D.; Hartman, M. T.; Haughian, K.; Hayama, K.; Heefner, J.; Heidmann, A.; Heintze, M.; Heitmann, H.; Hello, P.; Hemming, G.; Hendry, M.; Heng, I. S.; Heptonstall, A. W.; Heurs, M.; Hild, S.; Hoak, D.; Hodge, K. A.; Holt, K.; Holtrop, M.; Hong, T.; Hooper, S.; Horrom, T.; Hosken, D. J.; Hough, J.; Howell, E. J.; Hu, Y.; Hua, Z.; Huang, V.; Huerta, E. A.; Hughey, B.; Husa, S.; Huttner, S. H.; Huynh, M.; Huynh-Dinh, T.; Iafrate, J.; Ingram, D. R.; Inta, R.; Isogai, T.; Ivanov, A.; Iyer, B. R.; Izumi, K.; Jacobson, M.; James, E.; Jang, H.; Jang, Y. J.; Jaranowski, P.; Jiménez-Forteza, F.; Johnson, W. W.; Jones, D.; Jones, D. I.; Jones, R.; Jonker, R. J. G.; Ju, L.; K, Haris; Kalmus, P.; Kalogera, V.; Kandhasamy, S.; Kang, G.; Kanner, J. B.; Kasprzack, M.; Kasturi, R.; Katsavounidis, E.; Katzman, W.; Kaufer, H.; Kaufman, K.; Kawabe, K.; Kawamura, S.; Kawazoe, F.; Kéfélian, F.; Keitel, D.; Kelley, D. B.; Kells, W.; Keppel, D. G.; Khalaidovski, A.; Khalili, F. Y.; Khazanov, E. A.; Kim, B. K.; Kim, C.; Kim, K.; Kim, N.; Kim, W.; Kim, Y.-M.; King, E. J.; King, P. J.; Kinzel, D. L.; Kissel, J. S.; Klimenko, S.; Kline, J.; Koehlenbeck, S.; Kokeyama, K.; Kondrashov, V.; Koranda, S.; Korth, W. Z.; Kowalska, I.; Kozak, D.; Kremin, A.; Kringel, V.; Krishnan, B.; Królak, A.; Kucharczyk, C.; Kudla, S.; Kuehn, G.; Kumar, A.; Kumar, P.; Kumar, R.; Kurdyumov, R.; Kwee, P.; Landry, M.; Lantz, B.; Larson, S.; Lasky, P. D.; Lawrie, C.; Lazzarini, A.; Le Roux, A.; Leaci, P.; Lebigot, E. O.; Lee, C.-H.; Lee, H. K.; Lee, H. M.; Lee, J.; Lee, J.; Leonardi, M.; Leong, J. R.; Leroy, N.; Letendre, N.; Levine, B.; Lewis, J. B.; Lhuillier, V.; Li, T. G. F.; Lin, A. C.; Littenberg, T. B.; Litvine, V.; Liu, F.; Liu, H.; Liu, Y.; Liu, Z.; Lloyd, D.; Lockerbie, N. A.; Lockett, V.; Lodhia, D.; Loew, K.; Logue, J.; Lombardi, A. L.; Lorenzini, M.; Loriette, V.; Lormand, M.; Losurdo, G.; Lough, J.; Luan, J.; Lubinski, M. J.; Lück, H.; Lundgren, A. P.; Macarthur, J.; Macdonald, E.; Machenschalk, B.; MacInnis, M.; Macleod, D. M.; Magana-Sandoval, F.; Mageswaran, M.; Mailand, K.; Majorana, E.; Maksimovic, I.; Malvezzi, V.; Man, N.; Manca, G. M.; Mandel, I.; Mandic, V.; Mangano, V.; Mantovani, M.; Marchesoni, F.; Marion, F.; Márka, S.; Márka, Z.; Markosyan, A.; Maros, E.; Marque, J.; Martelli, F.; Martin, I. W.; Martin, R. M.; Martinelli, L.; Martynov, D.; Marx, J. N.; Mason, K.; Masserot, A.; Massinger, T. J.; Matichard, F.; Matone, L.; Matzner, R. A.; Mavalvala, N.; May, G.; Mazumder, N.; Mazzolo, G.; McCarthy, R.; McClelland, D. E.; McGuire, S. C.; McIntyre, G.; McIver, J.; Meacher, D.; Meadors, G. D.; Mehmet, M.; Meidam, J.; Meier, T.; Melatos, A.; Mendell, G.; Mercer, R. A.; Meshkov, S.; Messenger, C.; Meyer, M. S.; Miao, H.; Michel, C.; Mikhailov, E. E.; Milano, L.; Miller, J.; Minenkov, Y.; Mingarelli, C. M. F.; Mitra, S.; Mitrofanov, V. P.; Mitselmakher, G.; Mittleman, R.; Moe, B.; Mohan, M.; Mohapatra, S. R. P.; Mokler, F.; Moraru, D.; Moreno, G.; Morgado, N.; Mori, T.; Morriss, S. R.; Mossavi, K.; Mours, B.; Mow-Lowry, C. M.; Mueller, C. L.; Mueller, G.; Mukherjee, S.; Mullavey, A.; Munch, J.; Murphy, D.; Murray, P. G.; Mytidis, A.; Nagy, M. F.; Nanda Kumar, D.; Nardecchia, I.; Nash, T.; Naticchioni, L.; Nayak, R.; Necula, V.; Nelemans, G.; Neri, I.; Neri, M.; Newton, G.; Nguyen, T.; Nishida, E.; Nishizawa, A.; Nitz, A.; Nocera, F.; Nolting, D.; Normandin, M. E.; Nuttall, L. K.; Ochsner, E.; O'Dell, J.; Oelker, E.; Ogin, G. H.; Oh, J. J.; Oh, S. H.; Ohme, F.; Oppermann, P.; O'Reilly, B.; Ortega Larcher, W.; O'Shaughnessy, R.; Osthelder, C.; Ottaway, D. J.; Ottens, R. S.; Ou, J.; Overmier, H.; Owen, B. J.; Padilla, C.; Pai, A.; Palomba, C.; Pan, Y.; Pankow, C.; Paoletti, F.; Paoletti, R.; Papa, M. A.; Paris, H.; Pasqualetti, A.; Passaquieti, R.; Passuello, D.; Pedraza, M.; Peiris, P.; Penn, S.; Perreca, A.; Phelps, M.; Pichot, M.; Pickenpack, M.; Piergiovanni, F.; Pierro, V.; Pinard, L.; Pindor, B.; Pinto, I. M.; Pitkin, M.; Poeld, J.; Poggiani, R.; Poole, V.; Poux, C.; Predoi, V.; Prestegard, T.; Price, L. R.; Prijatelj, M.; Principe, M.; Privitera, S.; Prix, R.; Prodi, G. A.; Prokhorov, L.; Puncken, O.; Punturo, M.; Puppo, P.; Quetschke, V.; Quintero, E.; Quitzow-James, R.; Raab, F. J.; Rabeling, D. S.; Rácz, I.; Radkins, H.; Raffai, P.; Raja, S.; Rajalakshmi, G.; Rakhmanov, M.; Ramet, C.; Rapagnani, P.; Raymond, V.; Re, V.; Reed, C. M.; Reed, T.; Regimbau, T.; Reid, S.; Reitze, D. H.; Ricci, F.; Riesen, R.; Riles, K.; Robertson, N. A.; Robinet, F.; Rocchi, A.; Roddy, S.; Rodriguez, C.; Rodruck, M.; Roever, C.; Rolland, L.; Rollins, J. G.; Romano, J. D.; Romano, R.; Romanov, G.; Romie, J. H.; Rosińska, D.; Rowan, S.; Rüdiger, A.; Ruggi, P.; Ryan, K.; Salemi, F.; Sammut, L.; Sandberg, V.; Sanders, J.; Sannibale, V.; Santiago-Prieto, I.; Saracco, E.; Sassolas, B.; Sathyaprakash, B. S.; Saulson, P. R.; Savage, R.; Schilling, R.; Schnabel, R.; Schofield, R. M. S.; Schreiber, E.; Schuette, D.; Schulz, B.; Schutz, B. F.; Schwinberg, P.; Scott, J.; Scott, S. M.; Seifert, F.; Sellers, D.; Sengupta, A. S.; Sentenac, D.; Sergeev, A.; Shaddock, D.; Shah, S.; Shahriar, M. S.; Shaltev, M.; Shapiro, B.; Shawhan, P.; Shoemaker, D. H.; Sidery, T. L.; Siellez, K.; Siemens, X.; Sigg, D.; Simakov, D.; Singer, A.; Singer, L.; Sintes, A. M.; Skelton, G. R.; Slagmolen, B. J. J.; Slutsky, J.; Smith, J. R.; Smith, M. R.; Smith, R. J. E.; Smith-Lefebvre, N. D.; Soden, K.; Son, E. J.; Sorazu, B.; Souradeep, T.; Sperandio, L.; Staley, A.; Steinert, E.; Steinlechner, J.; Steinlechner, S.; Steplewski, S.; Stevens, D.; Stochino, A.; Stone, R.; Strain, K. A.; Straniero, N.; Strigin, S.; Stroeer, A. S.; Sturani, R.; Stuver, A. L.; Summerscales, T. Z.; Susmithan, S.; Sutton, P. J.; Swinkels, B.; Szeifert, G.; Tacca, M.; Talukder, D.; Tang, L.; Tanner, D. B.; Tarabrin, S. P.; Taylor, R.; ter Braack, A. P. M.; Thirugnanasambandam, M. P.; Thomas, M.; Thomas, P.; Thorne, K. A.; Thorne, K. S.; Thrane, E.; Tiwari, V.; Tokmakov, K. V.; Tomlinson, C.; Toncelli, A.; Tonelli, M.; Torre, O.; Torres, C. V.; Torrie, C. I.; Travasso, F.; Traylor, G.; Tse, M.; Ugolini, D.; Unnikrishnan, C. S.; Vahlbruch, H.; Vajente, G.; Vallisneri, M.; van den Brand, J. F. J.; Van Den Broeck, C.; van der Putten, S.; van der Sluys, M. V.; van Heijningen, J.; van Veggel, A. A.; Vass, S.; Vasúth, M.; Vaulin, R.; Vecchio, A.; Vedovato, G.; Veitch, J.; Veitch, P. J.; Venkateswara, K.; Verkindt, D.; Verma, S.; Vetrano, F.; Viceré, A.; Vincent-Finley, R.; Vinet, J.-Y.; Vitale, S.; Vlcek, B.; Vo, T.; Vocca, H.; Vorvick, C.; Vousden, W. D.; Vrinceanu, D.; Vyachanin, S. P.; Wade, A.; Wade, L.; Wade, M.; Waldman, S. J.; Walker, M.; Wallace, L.; Wan, Y.; Wang, J.; Wang, M.; Wang, X.; Wanner, A.; Ward, R. L.; Was, M.; Weaver, B.; Wei, L.-W.; Weinert, M.; Weinstein, A. J.; Weiss, R.; Welborn, T.; Wen, L.; Wessels, P.; West, M.; Westphal, T.; Wette, K.; Whelan, J. T.; Whitcomb, S. E.; White, D. J.; Whiting, B. F.; Wibowo, S.; Wiesner, K.; Wilkinson, C.; Williams, L.; Williams, R.; Williams, T.; Willis, J. L.; Willke, B.; Wimmer, M.; Winkelmann, L.; Winkler, W.; Wipf, C. C.; Wittel, H.; Woan, G.; Worden, J.; Yablon, J.; Yakushin, I.; Yamamoto, H.; Yancey, C. C.; Yang, H.; Yeaton-Massey, D.; Yoshida, S.; Yum, H.; Yvert, M.; Zadrożny, A.; Zanolin, M.; Zendri, J.-P.; Zhang, F.; Zhang, L.; Zhao, C.; Zhu, H.; Zhu, X. J.; Zotov, N.; Zucker, M. E.; Zweizig, J.; Buchner, S.; Cognard, I.; Corongiu, A.; D'Amico, N.; Espinoza, C. M.; Freire, P. C. C.; Gotthelf, E. V.; Guillemot, L.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Hobbs, G. B.; Kramer, M.; Lyne, A. G.; Marshall, F. E.; Possenti, A.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Roy, J.; Stappers, B. W.; LIGO Scientific Collaboration; Virgo Collaboration

    2014-04-01

    We present the results of searches for gravitational waves from a large selection of pulsars using data from the most recent science runs (S6, VSR2 and VSR4) of the initial generation of interferometric gravitational wave detectors LIGO (Laser Interferometric Gravitational-wave Observatory) and Virgo. We do not see evidence for gravitational wave emission from any of the targeted sources but produce upper limits on the emission amplitude. We highlight the results from seven young pulsars with large spin-down luminosities. We reach within a factor of five of the canonical spin-down limit for all seven of these, whilst for the Crab and Vela pulsars we further surpass their spin-down limits. We present new or updated limits for 172 other pulsars (including both young and millisecond pulsars). Now that the detectors are undergoing major upgrades, and, for completeness, we bring together all of the most up-to-date results from all pulsars searched for during the operations of the first-generation LIGO, Virgo and GEO600 detectors. This gives a total of 195 pulsars including the most recent results described in this paper.

  10. Gravitational Waves from Known Pulsars: Results from the Initial Detector Era

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Aasi, J.; Abadie, J.; Abbott, B. P.; Abbott, R.; Abbott, T.; Abernathy, M. R.; Accadia, T.; Acernese, F.; Adams, C.; Adams, T.; Adhikari, R. X.; Affeldt, C.; Agathos, M.; Aggarwal, N.; Aguiar, O. D.; Ajith, P.; Allen, B.; Allocca, A.; Ceron, E. A.; Blackburn, L.; Camp, J. B.; Gehrels, N.; Graff, P. B.; Kanner, J. B.; Hobbs, G. B.

    2014-01-01

    We present the results of searches for gravitational waves from a large selection of pulsars using data from the most recent science runs (S6, VSR2 and VSR4) of the initial generation of interferometric gravitational wave detectors LIGO (Laser Interferometric Gravitational-wave Observatory) and Virgo. We do not see evidence for gravitational wave emission from any of the targeted sources but produce upper limits on the emission amplitude. We highlight the results from seven young pulsars with large spin-down luminosities. We reach within a factor of five of the canonical spin-down limit for all seven of these, whilst for the Crab and Vela pulsars we further surpass their spin-down limits. We present new or updated limits for 172 other pulsars (including both young and millisecond pulsars). Now that the detectors are undergoing major upgrades, and, for completeness, we bring together all of the most up-to-date results from all pulsars searched for during the operations of the first-generation LIGO, Virgo and GEO600 detectors. This gives a total of 195 pulsars including the most recent results described in this paper.

  11. Gravitational waves from known pulsars: Results from the initial detector era

    SciTech Connect

    Aasi, J.; Abadie, J.; Abbott, B. P.; Abbott, R.; Abernathy, M. R.; Adhikari, R. X.; Ajith, P.; Abbott, T.; Accadia, T.; Adams, C.; Adams, T.; Affeldt, C.; Allen, B.; Agathos, M.; Aggarwal, N.; Aguiar, O. D.; Allocca, A.; Ceron, E. Amador; Amariutei, D.; Collaboration: LIGO Scientific Collaboration and The Virgo Collaboration; and others

    2014-04-20

    We present the results of searches for gravitational waves from a large selection of pulsars using data from the most recent science runs (S6, VSR2 and VSR4) of the initial generation of interferometric gravitational wave detectors LIGO (Laser Interferometric Gravitational-wave Observatory) and Virgo. We do not see evidence for gravitational wave emission from any of the targeted sources but produce upper limits on the emission amplitude. We highlight the results from seven young pulsars with large spin-down luminosities. We reach within a factor of five of the canonical spin-down limit for all seven of these, whilst for the Crab and Vela pulsars we further surpass their spin-down limits. We present new or updated limits for 172 other pulsars (including both young and millisecond pulsars). Now that the detectors are undergoing major upgrades, and, for completeness, we bring together all of the most up-to-date results from all pulsars searched for during the operations of the first-generation LIGO, Virgo and GEO600 detectors. This gives a total of 195 pulsars including the most recent results described in this paper.

  12. Microburst of TeV gamma rays from the Crab pulsar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vishwanath, P. R.; Bhat, P. N.; Gupta, S. K.; Ramanamurthy, P. V.; Sreekantan, B. V.

    1985-01-01

    Data on Crab pulsar from atmospheric Cerenkov array at Ooty have shown emission of TeV gamma rays in the form of microbursts. These are a series of events which are unusually closely spaced in time with time separations of less than 1.5 milliseconds. The phasogram of events in the bursts when analyzed with the Crab pulsar period shows significant peaks. Data further show that the signal is at the same absolute phase as the radio peak. Monte Carlo calculations show that the probability of peaks being due to chance is very small.

  13. Radio efficiency of pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Szary, Andrzej; Melikidze, George I.; Gil, Janusz; Zhang, Bing; Xu, Ren-Xin E-mail: zhang@physics.unlv.edu

    2014-03-20

    We investigate radio emission efficiency, ξ, of pulsars and report a near-linear inverse correlation between ξ and the spin-down power, E-dot , as well as a near-linear correlation between ξ and pulsar age, τ. This is a consequence of very weak, if any, dependences of radio luminosity, L, on pulsar period, P, and the period derivative, P-dot , in contrast to X-ray or γ-ray emission luminosities. The analysis of radio fluxes suggests that these correlations are not due to a selection effect, but are intrinsic to the pulsar radio emission physics. We have found that, although with a large variance, the radio luminosity of pulsars is ≈10{sup 29} erg s{sup –1}, regardless of the position in the P-- P-dot diagram. Within such a picture, a model-independent statement can be made that the death line of radio pulsars corresponds to an upper limit in the efficiency of radio emission. If we introduce the maximum value for radio efficiency into the Monte Carlo-based population syntheses we can reproduce the observed sample using the random luminosity model. Using the Kolmogorov-Smirnov test on a synthetic flux distribution reveals a high probability of reproducing the observed distribution. Our results suggest that the plasma responsible for generating radio emission is produced under similar conditions regardless of pulsar age, dipolar magnetic field strength, and spin-down rate. The magnetic fields near the pulsar surface are likely dominated by crust-anchored, magnetic anomalies, which do not significantly differ among pulsars, leading to similar conditions for generating electron-positron pairs necessary to power radio emission.

  14. Stellar evolution and pulsars.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chiu, H.-Y.

    1972-01-01

    It has been found that pulsars are rotating magnetic neutron stars, which are created during catastrophic collapses of old stars whose nuclear fuel has long since been used up. The maximum size of pulsars, based on the fastest rotation period of 33 msec, cannot exceed 100 km. The densest star the theory predicts is the neutron star. Its diameter is only 10 km. The processes producing radiation from pulsars are discussed, giving attention to a process similar to that by which a klystron operates and to a process based on a maser mechanism.

  15. SHORT-LIVED RADIO BURSTS FROM THE CRAB PULSAR

    SciTech Connect

    Crossley, J. H.; Eilek, J. A.; Hankins, T. H.; Kern, J. S.

    2010-10-20

    Our high-time-resolution observations reveal that individual main pulses from the Crab pulsar contain one or more short-lived microbursts. Both the energy and duration of bursts measured above 1 GHz can vary dramatically in less than a millisecond. These fluctuations are too rapid to be caused by propagation through turbulence in the Crab Nebula or in the interstellar medium; they must be intrinsic to the radio emission process in the pulsar. The mean duration of a burst varies with frequency as {nu}{sup -2}, significantly different from the broadening caused by interstellar scattering. We compare the properties of the bursts to some simple models of microstructure in the radio emission region.

  16. A Wide Bandwidth Digital Recording System for Pulsar Astronomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jenet, F. A.; Unwin, S. C.; Prince, T. A.

    1995-12-01

    We have developed a powerful and flexible data acquisition system for pulsar astronomy, based on a 50 Mbyte/s commercial instrumentation tape recorder and a custom analog-digital VLSI digitizer chip. This system converts the problem of pulsar detection from largely hardware-oriented to mostly software-oriented. We are using the 512-node Intel Paragon XPS and Touchstone Delta supercomputers at Caltech for pulsar searching and analysis. The detection of fast pulsars requires (1) rapid time sampling, and (2) the ability to correct for dispersion (frequency-dependent time delay caused by charged particles in the interstellar medium). A conventional hardware approach involves a filterbank or correlator at the telescope, then sampling and recording the detected power. Our telescope hardware is relatively simple, performing only downconversion from RF or IF to baseband, followed by Nyquist sampling and (2-bit) digitizing the voltage signal by the custom VLSI chip, then storage on ANSI D1 videocassette. One D1-L cassette allows continuous recording of two polarizations each with 50 MHz bandwidth for 32 minutes, or 25 MHz for 64 minutes. In software we can de-disperse the pulse signals by synthesizing a filterbank with an arbitrary number of frequency channels. Coherent dedispersion can be performed on the voltage (but not power) data, allowing time resolutions down to the inverse RF bandwidth to be achieved in principle. We present first results from observations in July 1995 at the 64-m telescope at Parkes Observatory, Australia Telescope National Facility. These results on known pulsars, including faint globular cluster millisecond-period pulsars, demonstrate the capabilities of our data recording and analysis system.

  17. X-ray observations of black widow pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Gentile, P. A.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Roberts, M. S. E.; Camilo, F.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Kerr, M.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Stairs, I. H.

    2014-03-10

    We describe the first X-ray observations of five short orbital period (P{sub B} < 1 day), γ-ray emitting, binary millisecond pulsars (MSPs). Four of these—PSRs J0023+0923, J1124–3653, J1810+1744, and J2256–1024—are 'black-widow' pulsars, with degenerate companions of mass <<0.1 M {sub ☉}, three of which exhibit radio eclipses. The fifth source, PSR J2215+5135, is an eclipsing 'redback' with a near Roche-lobe filling ∼0.2 solar mass non-degenerate companion. Data were taken using the Chandra X-Ray Observatory and covered a full binary orbit for each pulsar. Two pulsars, PSRs J2215+5135 and J2256–1024, show significant orbital variability while PSR J1124–3653 shows marginal orbital variability. The lightcurves for these three pulsars have X-ray flux minima coinciding with the phases of the radio eclipses. This phenomenon is consistent with an intrabinary shock emission interpretation for the X-rays. The other two pulsars, PSRs J0023+0923 and J1810+1744, are fainter and do not demonstrate variability at a level we can detect in these data. All five spectra are fit with three separate models: a power-law model, a blackbody model, and a combined model with both power-law and blackbody components. The preferred spectral fits yield power-law indices that range from 1.3 to 3.2 and blackbody temperatures in the hundreds of eV. The spectrum for PSR J2215+5135 shows a significant hard X-ray component, with a large number of counts above 2 keV, which is additional evidence for the presence of intrabinary shock emission. This is similar to what has been detected in the low-mass X-ray binary to MSP transition object PSR J1023+0038.

  18. Pulsar magnetosphere: a new view from PIC simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brambilla, Gabriele; Kalapotharakos, Constantions; Timokhin, Andrey; Harding, Alice; Kazanas, Demosthenes

    2017-01-01

    Pulsar emission is produced by charged particles that are accelerated as they flow in the star's magnetosphere. The magnetosphere is populated by electrons and positrons while the physical conditions are characterized by the so called force-free regime. However, the magnetospheric plasma configuration is still unknown, besides some general features, which inhibits the understanding of the emission generation. Here we show the closest to force-free solution ever obtained with a particle-in-cell (PIC) code. The importance of obtaining a force-free solution with PIC is that we can understand how the different particle species support the corresponding magnetosphere structure. Moreover, some aspects of the emission generation are captured. These are the necessary steps to go toward a self consistent modeling of the magnetosphere, connecting the microphysics of the pair plasma to its macroscopic quantities. Understanding the pulsar magnetosphere is essential for interpreting the broad neutron star phenomenology (young pulsars, magnetars, millisecond pulsars, etc.). The study of these plasma physics processes is also crucial for putting limits on the ability of these objects to accelerate particles.

  19. Regimes of Pulsar Pair Formation and Particle Energetics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.; Muslimov, Alexander G.; Zhang, Bing; White, Nicholas E. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    We investigate the conditions required for the production of electron-positron pairs above a pulsar polar cap (PC) and the influence of pair production on the energetics of the primary particle acceleration. Assuming space-charge limited flow acceleration including the inertial frame-dragging effect, we allow both one-photon and two-photon pair production by either curvature radiation (CR) photons or photons resulting from inverse-Compton scattering of thermal photons from the PC by primary electrons. We find that,, while only the younger pulsars can produce pairs through CR, nearly all known radio pulsars are capable of producing pairs through non-resonant inverse-Compton scatterings. The effect of the neutron star equations of state on the pair death lines is explored. We show that pair production is facilitated in more compact stars and more a massive stars. Therefore accretion of mass by pulsars in binary systems may allow pair production in most of the millisecond purser population. We also find that two-photon pair production may be important in millisecond pursers if their surface temperatures are above approx. or equal to three million degrees K. Pursers that produce pairs through CRT wilt have their primary acceleration limited by the effect of screening of the electric field. In this regime, the high-energy luminosity should follow a L(sub HE) proportional to dot-E(sup 1/2, sub rot) dependence. The acceleration voltage drop in pursers that produce pairs only through inverse-Compton emission will not be limited by electric field screening. In this regime, the high-energy luminosity should follow a L(sub HE) proportional to dot-E(sub rot) dependence. Thus, older pursers will have significantly lower gamma-ray luminosity.

  20. State-of-art pulsar studies using interferometric arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roy, Jayanta

    The new flexible and powerful software back-end (GSB) opens up the possibility of new regimes of pulsar studies with interferometric arrays like the GMRT, as exemplified by two unique techniques - a gating correlator for millisecond pulsars (MSPs) and a multi-pixel beamformer. We have developed a coherently dedispersed MSP gating correlator at the GMRT motivated by the requirement of localising the newly discovered faint Fermi MSPs. This imaging technique uses the dedispersed visibility data folded with period, acceleration and jerk. We could localise the tighter and fainter binary MSPs in the ON-OFF image plane, even outside the HPBW of GMRT. This tool enables study of unique aspects of MSP population (also pulsars in general) using present and up-coming interferometric arrays (LEAP, ASKAP, MeerKAT, SKA etc). Study the off-pulse emission from the gamma-ray selected MSPs using the MSP gating imaging technique can provide additional constrain on the emission region in pulsar magnetosphere. Moreover, proper motion study of the fainter pulsars is highly benefited from the sensitivity enhancement on the gated image plane. We have also developed a multi-pixel beamformer technique, which is able to look for pulsations much more efficiently over a larger solid angle. This efficient technique combines the enhanced sensitivity of a coherent array beamformer with the wide field-of-view seen by an incoherent array beamformer. I will present a special application of this technique, where we use continuum imaging followed by the multi-pixel beamformer to obtain the precise locations of newly discovered MSPs with the GMRT. Accurate positions measured with single observations enable highly sensitive follow-up studies using coherent array beamformer and rapid follow up at higher radio frequencies and other wavelengths. Normally, such accurate positions can only be obtained from a long-term pulsar timing program. The multi-pixel beamformer technique can also be used for highly

  1. Fermi Pulsar Analysis

    NASA Video Gallery

    This animation illustrates how analysis of Fermi data reveals new pulsars. Fermi's LAT records the precise arrival time and approximate direction of the gamma rays it detects, but to identify a pul...

  2. Wide Band Artificial Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parsons, Zackary

    2017-01-01

    The Wide Band Artificial Pulsar (WBAP) is an instrument verification device designed and built by the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) in Green Bank, West Virgina. The site currently operates the Green Bank Ultimate Pulsar Processing Instrument (GUPPI) and the Versatile Green Bank Astronomical Spectrometer (VEGAS) digital backends for their radio telescopes. The commissioning and continued support for these sophisticated backends has demonstrated a need for a device capable of producing an accurate artificial pulsar signal. The WBAP is designed to provide a very close approximation to an actual pulsar signal. This presentation is intended to provide an overview of the current hardware and software implementations and to also share the current results from testing using the WBAP.

  3. Geriatric Pulsar Still Kicking

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-02-01

    The oldest isolated pulsar ever detected in X-rays has been found with NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. This very old and exotic object turns out to be surprisingly active. The pulsar, PSR J0108-1431 (J0108 for short) is about 200 million years old. Among isolated pulsars -- ones that have not been spun-up in a binary system -- it is over 10 times older than the previous record holder with an X-ray detection. At a distance of 770 light years, it is one of the nearest pulsars known. Pulsars are born when stars that are much more massive than the Sun collapse in supernova explosions, leaving behind a small, incredibly weighty core, known as a neutron star. At birth, these neutron stars, which contain the densest material known in the Universe, are spinning rapidly, up to a hundred revolutions per second. As the rotating beams of their radiation are seen as pulses by distant observers, similar to a lighthouse beam, astronomers call them "pulsars". Astronomers observe a gradual slowing of the rotation of the pulsars as they radiate energy away. Radio observations of J0108 show it to be one of the oldest and faintest pulsars known, spinning only slightly faster than one revolution per second. The surprise came when a team of astronomers led by George Pavlov of Penn State University observed J0108 in X-rays with Chandra. They found that it glows much brighter in X-rays than was expected for a pulsar of such advanced years. People Who Read This Also Read... Chandra Data Reveal Rapidly Whirling Black Holes Milky Way’s Giant Black Hole Awoke from Slumber 300 Years Ago Erratic Black Hole Regulates Itself Celebrate the International Year of Astronomy Some of the energy that J0108 is losing as it spins more slowly is converted into X-ray radiation. The efficiency of this process for J0108 is found to be higher than for any other known pulsar. "This pulsar is pumping out high-energy radiation much more efficiently than its younger cousins," said Pavlov. "So, although it

  4. Elementary wideband timing of radio pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Pennucci, Timothy T.; Demorest, Paul B.; Ransom, Scott M. E-mail: pdemores@nrao.edu

    2014-08-01

    We present an algorithm for the simultaneous measurement of a pulse time-of-arrival (TOA) and dispersion measure (DM) from folded wideband pulsar data. We extend the prescription from Taylor's 1992 work to accommodate a general two-dimensional template 'portrait', the alignment of which can be used to measure a pulse phase and DM. We show that there is a dedispersion reference frequency that removes the covariance between these two quantities and note that the recovered pulse profile scaling amplitudes can provide useful information. We experiment with pulse modeling by using a Gaussian-component scheme that allows for independent component evolution with frequency, a 'fiducial component', and the inclusion of scattering. We showcase the algorithm using our publicly available code on three years of wideband data from the bright millisecond pulsar J1824–2452A (M28A) from the Green Bank Telescope, and a suite of Monte Carlo analyses validates the algorithm. By using a simple model portrait of M28A, we obtain DM trends comparable to those measured by more standard methods, with improved TOA and DM precisions by factors of a few. Measurements from our algorithm will yield precisions at least as good as those from traditional techniques, but is prone to fewer systematic effects and is without ad hoc parameters. A broad application of this new method for dispersion measure tracking with modern large-bandwidth observing systems should improve the timing residuals for pulsar timing array experiments, such as the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves.

  5. Cosmic Ray Positrons from Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.

    2010-01-01

    Pulsars are potential Galactic sources of positrons through pair cascades in their magnetospheres. There are, however, many uncertainties in establishing their contribution to the local primary positron flux. Among these are the local density of pulsars, the cascade pair multiplicities that determine the injection rate of positrons from the pulsar, the acceleration of the injected particles by the pulsar wind termination shock, their rate of escape from the pulsar wind nebula, and their propagation through the interstellar medium. I will discuss these issues in the context of what we are learning from the new Fermi pulsar detections and discoveries.

  6. Pulsar statistics and their interpretations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arnett, W. D.; Lerche, I.

    1981-01-01

    It is shown that a lack of knowledge concerning interstellar electron density, the true spatial distribution of pulsars, the radio luminosity source distribution of pulsars, the real ages and real aging rates of pulsars, the beaming factor (and other unknown factors causing the known sample of about 350 pulsars to be incomplete to an unknown degree) is sufficient to cause a minimum uncertainty of a factor of 20 in any attempt to determine pulsar birth or death rates in the Galaxy. It is suggested that this uncertainty must impact on suggestions that the pulsar rates can be used to constrain possible scenarios for neutron star formation and stellar evolution in general.

  7. Pulse Portraiture: Pulsar timing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pennucci, Timothy T.; Demorest, Paul B.; Ransom, Scott M.

    2016-06-01

    Pulse Portraiture is a wideband pulsar timing code written in python. It uses an extension of the FFTFIT algorithm (Taylor 1992) to simultaneously measure a phase (TOA) and dispersion measure (DM). The code includes a Gaussian-component-based portrait modeling routine. The code uses the python interface to the pulsar data analysis package PSRCHIVE (ascl:1105.014) and also requires the non-linear least-squares minimization package lmfit (ascl:1606.014).

  8. On ultra-high energy cosmic ray acceleration at the termination shock of young pulsar winds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemoine, Martin; Kotera, Kumiko; Pétri, Jérôme

    2015-07-01

    Pulsar wind nebulae (PWNe) are outstanding accelerators in Nature, in the sense that they accelerate electrons up to the radiation reaction limit. Motivated by this observation, this paper examines the possibility that young pulsar wind nebulae can accelerate ions to ultra-high energies at the termination shock of the pulsar wind. We consider here powerful PWNe, fed by pulsars born with ~ millisecond periods. Assuming that such pulsars exist, at least during a few years after the birth of the neutron star, and that they inject ions into the wind, we find that protons could be accelerated up to energies of the order of the Greisen-Zatsepin-Kuzmin cut-off, for a fiducial rotation period P ~ 1 msec and a pulsar magnetic field Bstar ~ 1013 G, implying a fiducial wind luminosity Lp ~ 1045 erg/s and a spin-down time tsd ~ 3× 107 s. The main limiting factor is set by synchrotron losses in the nebula and by the size of the termination shock; ions with Z>= 1 may therefore be accelerated to even higher energies. We derive an associated neutrino flux produced by interactions in the source region. For a proton-dominated composition, our maximum flux lies slightly below the 5-year sensitivity of IceCube-86 and above the 3-year sensitivity of the projected Askaryan Radio Array. It might thus become detectable in the next decade, depending on the exact level of contribution of these millisecond pulsar wind nebulae to the ultra-high energy cosmic ray flux.

  9. On ultra-high energy cosmic ray acceleration at the termination shock of young pulsar winds

    SciTech Connect

    Lemoine, Martin; Kotera, Kumiko; Pétri, Jérôme E-mail: kotera@iap.fr

    2015-07-01

    Pulsar wind nebulae (PWNe) are outstanding accelerators in Nature, in the sense that they accelerate electrons up to the radiation reaction limit. Motivated by this observation, this paper examines the possibility that young pulsar wind nebulae can accelerate ions to ultra-high energies at the termination shock of the pulsar wind. We consider here powerful PWNe, fed by pulsars born with ∼ millisecond periods. Assuming that such pulsars exist, at least during a few years after the birth of the neutron star, and that they inject ions into the wind, we find that protons could be accelerated up to energies of the order of the Greisen-Zatsepin-Kuzmin cut-off, for a fiducial rotation period P ∼ 1 msec and a pulsar magnetic field B{sub *} ∼ 10{sup 13} G, implying a fiducial wind luminosity L{sub p} ∼ 10{sup 45} erg/s and a spin-down time t{sub sd} ∼ 3× 10{sup 7} s. The main limiting factor is set by synchrotron losses in the nebula and by the size of the termination shock; ions with Z≥ 1 may therefore be accelerated to even higher energies. We derive an associated neutrino flux produced by interactions in the source region. For a proton-dominated composition, our maximum flux lies slightly below the 5-year sensitivity of IceCube-86 and above the 3-year sensitivity of the projected Askaryan Radio Array. It might thus become detectable in the next decade, depending on the exact level of contribution of these millisecond pulsar wind nebulae to the ultra-high energy cosmic ray flux.

  10. A Possible Optical Counterpart to XTE J1550--564

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orosz, Jerome; Bailyn, Charles; Jain, Raj

    1998-09-01

    We report YALO consortium observations using the Yale 1m telescope at Cerro Tololo Interamerican Observatory and the ANDICAM CCD camera. We have identified a possible optical counterpart to the recent X-ray transient XTE J1550-564 (IAUC 7008) in V-band images obtained September 8.99 UT. The J2000 coordinates of the candidate are R.A. = 15h51m04s, Decl. = -56o28'37.5", with errors on each value of about +/- 3 arcseconds.

  11. Gravitational Wave Astronomy Using Pulsars: Massive Black Hole Mergers and the Early Universe

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-01-01

    Exploring the Low-Frequency Gravita- tional Wave Spectrum Gravitational waves are fluctuations in the fabric of spacetime predicted by Einstein’s...time? We suspect the local spacetime metric is perturbed by the cumulative effect of gravitational waves (GWs) emitted by numerous massive black hole...millisecond pulsars evenly 1 distributed on the sky. A passing GW modifies the spacetime around the Earth in a manner that produces correlated shifts in the

  12. Long-term observations of the pulsars in 47 Tucanae - I. A study of four elusive binary systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ridolfi, A.; Freire, P. C. C.; Torne, P.; Heinke, C. O.; van den Berg, M.; Jordan, C.; Kramer, M.; Bassa, C. G.; Sarkissian, J.; D'Amico, N.; Lorimer, D.; Camilo, F.; Manchester, R. N.; Lyne, A.

    2016-11-01

    For the past couple of decades, the Parkes radio telescope has been regularly observing the millisecond pulsars in 47 Tucanae (47 Tuc). This long-term timing programme was designed to address a wide range of scientific issues related to these pulsars and the globular cluster where they are located. In this paper, the first of a series, we address one of these objectives: the characterization of four previously known binary pulsars for which no precise orbital parameters were known, namely 47 Tuc P, V, W and X (pulsars 47 Tuc R and Y are discussed elsewhere). We determined the previously unknown orbital parameters of 47 Tuc V and X and greatly improved those of 47 Tuc P and W. For pulsars W and X we obtained, for the first time, full coherent timing solutions across the whole data span, which allowed a much more detailed characterization of these systems. 47 Tuc W, a well-known tight eclipsing binary pulsar, exhibits a large orbital period variability, as expected for a system of its class. 47 Tuc X turns out to be in a wide, extremely circular, 10.9-d long binary orbit and its position is ˜3.8 arcmin away from the cluster centre, more than three times the distance of any other pulsar in 47 Tuc. These characteristics make 47 Tuc X a very different object with respect to the other pulsars of the cluster.

  13. "Missing Link" Revealing Fast-Spinning Pulsar Mysteries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-05-01

    Astronomers have discovered a unique double-star system that represents a "missing link" stage in what they believe is the birth process of the most rapidly-spinning stars in the Universe -- millisecond pulsars. "We've thought for some time that we knew how these pulsars get 'spun up' to rotate so swiftly, and this system looks like it's showing us the process in action," said Anne Archibald, of McGill University in Montreal, Canada. Pulsar and Companion Neutron star with accretion disk (left) drawing material from companion star (right). CREDIT:Bill Saxton, NRAO/AUI/NSF Animations of this system and its evolution. Pulsars are superdense neutron stars, the remnants left after massive stars have exploded as supernovae. Their powerful magnetic fields generate lighthouse-like beams of light and radio waves that sweep around as the star rotates. Most rotate a few to tens of times a second, slowing down over thousands of years. However, some, dubbed millisecond pulsars, rotate hundreds of times a second. Astronomers believe the fast rotation is caused by a companion star dumping material onto the neutron star and spinning it up. The material from the companion would form a flat, spinning disk around the neutron star, and during this period, the radio waves characteristic of a pulsar would not be seen coming from the system. As the amount of matter falling onto the neutron star decreased and stopped, the radio waves could emerge, and the object would be recognized as a pulsar. This sequence of events is apparently what happened with a binary-star system some 4000 light-years from Earth. The millisecond pulsar in this system, called J1023, was discovered by the National Science Foundation's (NSF) Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia in 2007 in a survey led by astronomers at West Virginia University and the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO). The astronomers then found that the object had been detected by NSF's Very Large Array (VLA) radio

  14. Optical study of pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanwal, Divas

    The Crab Pulsar emits radiation at all wavelengths from radio to extreme γ-rays including the optical. We have performed extremely high time resolution multicolor photometry of the Crab Pulsar at optical wavelengths to constrain the high energy emission models for pulsars. Our observations with 1 microsecond time resolution are a factor of 20 better than the previous best observations. We have completely resolved the peak of the main pulse of the Crab Pulsar in optical passbands. The peaks of the main pulse and the interpulse move smoothly from the rising branch to the falling branch with neither a flat top nor a cusp. We find that the peak of the Crab Pulsar main pulse in the B band arrives 140 microseconds before the peak of the radio pulse. The color of the emission changes across the phase. The maximum variation in the color ratio is about 25%. The bluest color occurs in the bridge region between the main pulse and the interpulse. The Crab Pulsar has faded by 2 +/- 2.8% since the previous observations in 1991 using the same instrument. The statistics of photon arrival times are consistent with atmospheric scintillation causing most of the variations in addition to the mean pulse variations in the shape. However, the autocorrelation function (ACF) of the Crab Pulsar light curve shows extra correlations at very short time scales. We identify two time scales, one at about 20 microseconds and another one at about 1000 microseconds at which we observe a break in the ACF. We conclude that these short timescale correlations are internal to the pulsar. We attribute the extra correlation observed in our data to microstructures. This is the first time evidence for microstructures has been observed outside the radio wavelengths. The upturn in the ACF at short time scales depends on the color. The U band shows about 10% more correlation at short time scales while the R band shows only about 3% change. We have also observed the young X-ray pulsar PSR 0656+14 at optical

  15. Prospects for high-precision pulsar timing with the new Effelsberg PSRIX backend

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lazarus, P.; Karuppusamy, R.; Graikou, E.; Caballero, R. N.; Champion, D. J.; Lee, K. J.; Verbiest, J. P. W.; Kramer, M.

    2016-05-01

    The PSRIX backend is the primary pulsar timing instrument of the Effelsberg 100 m radio telescope since early 2011. This new ROACH-based system enables bandwidths up to 500 MHz to be recorded, significantly more than what was possible with its predecessor, the Effelsberg-Berkeley Pulsar Processor (EBPP). We review the first four years of PSRIX timing data for 33 pulsars collected as part of the monthly European Pulsar Timing Array (EPTA) observations. We describe the automated data analysis pipeline, COASTGUARD, that we developed to reduce these observations. We also introduce TOASTER, the EPTA timing data base, used to store timing results, processing information and observation metadata. Using these new tools, we measure the phase-averaged flux densities at 1.4 GHz of all 33 pulsars. For seven of these pulsars, our flux density measurements are the first values ever reported. For the other 26 pulsars, we compare our flux density measurements with previously published values. By comparing PSRIX data with EBPP data, we find an improvement of ˜2-5 times in signal-to-noise ratio, which translates to an increase of ˜2-5 times in pulse time-of-arrival (TOA) precision. We show that such an improvement in TOA precision will improve the sensitivity to the stochastic gravitational wave background. Finally, we showcase the flexibility of the new PSRIX backend by observing several millisecond-period pulsars (MSPs) at 5 and 9 GHz. Motivated by our detections, we discuss the potential for complementing existing pulsar timing array data sets with MSP monitoring campaigns at these higher frequencies.

  16. The green bank northern celestial cap pulsar survey. I. Survey description, data analysis, and initial results

    SciTech Connect

    Stovall, K.; Dartez, L. P.; Ford, A. J.; Garcia, A.; Hinojosa, J.; Jenet, F. A.; Leake, S.; Lynch, R. S.; Archibald, A. M.; Karako-Argaman, C.; Kaspi, V. M.; Ransom, S. M.; Banaszak, S.; Biwer, C. M.; Day, D.; Flanigan, J.; Kaplan, D. L.; Boyles, J.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Kondratiev, V. I.; and others

    2014-08-10

    We describe an ongoing search for pulsars and dispersed pulses of radio emission, such as those from rotating radio transients (RRATs) and fast radio bursts, at 350 MHz using the Green Bank Telescope. With the Green Bank Ultimate Pulsar Processing Instrument, we record 100 MHz of bandwidth divided into 4096 channels every 81.92 μs. This survey will cover the entire sky visible to the Green Bank Telescope (δ > –40°, or 82% of the sky) and outside of the Galactic Plane will be sensitive enough to detect slow pulsars and low dispersion measure (<30 pc cm{sup –3}) millisecond pulsars (MSPs) with a 0.08 duty cycle down to 1.1 mJy. For pulsars with a spectral index of –1.6, we will be 2.5 times more sensitive than previous and ongoing surveys over much of our survey region. Here we describe the survey, the data analysis pipeline, initial discovery parameters for 62 pulsars, and timing solutions for 5 new pulsars. PSR J0214+5222 is an MSP in a long-period (512 days) orbit and has an optical counterpart identified in archival data. PSR J0636+5129 is an MSP in a very short-period (96 minutes) orbit with a very low mass companion (8 M{sub J}). PSR J0645+5158 is an isolated MSP with a timing residual RMS of 500 ns and has been added to pulsar timing array experiments. PSR J1434+7257 is an isolated, intermediate-period pulsar that has been partially recycled. PSR J1816+4510 is an eclipsing MSP in a short-period orbit (8.7 hr) and may have recently completed its spin-up phase.

  17. The Pulsating Pulsar Magnetosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsui, K. H.

    2015-06-01

    Following the basic principles of a charge-separated pulsar magnetosphere, we consider the magnetosphere to be stationary in space, instead of corotating, and the electric field to be uploaded from the potential distribution on the pulsar surface, set up by the unipolar induction. Consequently, the plasma of the magnetosphere undergoes guiding center drifts of the gyromotion due to the forces transverse to the magnetic field. These forces are the electric force, magnetic gradient force, and field line curvature force. Since these plasma velocities are of drift nature, there is no need to introduce an emf along the field lines, which would contradict the {{E}\\parallel }={\\boldsymbol{E}} \\cdot {\\boldsymbol{B}} =0 plasma condition. Furthermore, there is also no need to introduce the critical field line separating the electron and ion open field lines. We present a self-consistent description where the magnetosphere is described in terms of electric and magnetic fields and also in terms of plasma velocities. The fields and velocities are then connected through the space-charge densities self-consistently. We solve the pulsar equation analytically for the fields and construct the standard steady-state pulsar magnetosphere. By considering the unipolar induction inside the pulsar and the magnetosphere outside the pulsar as one coupled system, and under the condition that the unipolar pumping rate exceeds the Poynting flux in the open field lines, plasma pressure can build up in the magnetosphere, in particular, in the closed region. This could cause a periodic opening up of the closed region, leading to a pulsating magnetosphere, which could be an alternative to pulsar beacons. The closed region can also be opened periodically by the build up of toroidal magnetic field through a positive feedback cycle.

  18. ORIGIN OF INTERMITTENT ACCRETION-POWERED X-RAY OSCILLATIONS IN NEUTRON STARS WITH MILLISECOND SPIN PERIODS

    SciTech Connect

    Lamb, Frederick K.; Boutloukos, Stratos; Van Wassenhove, Sandor; Chamberlain, Robert T.; Lo, Ka Ho; Coleman Miller, M.

    2009-11-01

    We have shown previously that many of the properties of persistent accretion-powered millisecond pulsars can be understood if their X-ray emitting areas are near their spin axes and move as the accretion rate and structure of the inner disk vary. Here, we show that this 'nearly aligned moving spot model' may also explain the intermittent accretion-powered pulsations that have been detected in three weakly magnetic accreting neutron stars. We show that movement of the emitting area from very close to the spin axis to approx10 deg. away can increase the fractional rms amplitude from approx<0.5%, which is usually undetectable with current instruments, to a few percent, which is easily detectable. The second harmonic of the spin frequency usually would not be detected, in agreement with observations. The model produces intermittently detectable oscillations for a range of emitting area sizes and beaming patterns, stellar masses and radii, and viewing directions. Intermittent oscillations are more likely in stars that are more compact. In addition to explaining the sudden appearance of accretion-powered millisecond oscillations in some neutron stars with millisecond spin periods, the model explains why accretion-powered millisecond oscillations are relatively rare and predicts that the persistent accretion-powered millisecond oscillations of other stars may become undetectable for brief intervals. It suggests why millisecond oscillations are frequently detected during the X-ray bursts of some neutron stars but not others and suggests mechanisms that could explain the occasional temporal association of intermittent accretion-powered oscillations with thermonuclear X-ray bursts.

  19. The Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope discovers the pulsar in the young galactic supernova remnant CTA 1.

    PubMed

    Abdo, A A; Ackermann, M; Atwood, W B; Baldini, L; Ballet, J; Barbiellini, G; Baring, M G; Bastieri, D; Baughman, B M; Bechtol, K; Bellazzini, R; Berenji, B; Blandford, R D; Bloom, E D; Bogaert, G; Bonamente, E; Borgland, A W; Bregeon, J; Brez, A; Brigida, M; Bruel, P; Burnett, T H; Caliandro, G A; Cameron, R A; Caraveo, P A; Carlson, P; Casandjian, J M; Cecchi, C; Charles, E; Chekhtman, A; Cheung, C C; Chiang, J; Ciprini, S; Claus, R; Cohen-Tanugi, J; Cominsky, L R; Conrad, J; Cutini, S; Davis, D S; Dermer, C D; de Angelis, 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; Focke, W B; 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; Harding, A K; Hartman, R C; Hays, E; Hughes, R E; Jóhannesson, G; Johnson, A S; Johnson, R P; Johnson, T J; Johnson, W N; Kamae, T; Kanai, Y; Kanbach, G; Katagiri, H; Kawai, N; Kerr, M; Kishishita, T; Kiziltan, B; Knödlseder, J; Kocian, M L; Komin, N; Kuehn, F; Kuss, M; Latronico, L; Lemoine-Goumard, M; Longo, F; Lonjou, V; Loparco, F; Lott, B; Lovellette, M N; Lubrano, P; Makeev, A; Marelli, M; Mazziotta, M N; McEnery, J E; McGlynn, S; Meurer, C; Michelson, P F; Mineo, T; Mitthumsiri, W; Mizuno, T; Moiseev, A A; Monte, C; Monzani, M E; Morselli, A; Moskalenko, I V; Murgia, S; Nakamori, T; Nolan, P L; Nuss, E; Ohno, M; Ohsugi, T; Okumura, A; Omodei, N; Orlando, E; Ormes, J F; Ozaki, M; Paneque, D; Panetta, J H; Parent, D; Pelassa, V; Pepe, M; Pesce-Rollins, M; Piano, G; Pieri, L; Piron, F; Porter, T A; Rainò, S; Rando, R; Ray, P S; Razzano, M; 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; Parkinson, P M Saz; Schalk, T L; Sellerholm, A; Sgrò, C; Siskind, E J; Smith, D A; Smith, P D; Spandre, G; Spinelli, P; Starck, J-L; Strickman, M S; Suson, D J; Tajima, H; Takahashi, H; Takahashi, T; Tanaka, T; Thayer, J B; Thayer, J G; Thompson, D J; Thorsett, S E; Tibaldo, L; Torres, D F; Tosti, G; Tramacere, A; Usher, T L; Van Etten, A; Vilchez, N; Vitale, V; Wang, P; Watters, K; Winer, B L; Wood, K S; Yasuda, H; Ylinen, T; Ziegler, M

    2008-11-21

    Energetic young pulsars and expanding blast waves [supernova remnants (SNRs)] are the most visible remains after massive stars, ending their lives, explode in core-collapse supernovae. The Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope has unveiled a radio quiet pulsar located near the center of the compact synchrotron nebula inside the supernova remnant CTA 1. The pulsar, discovered through its gamma-ray pulsations, has a period of 316.86 milliseconds and a period derivative of 3.614 x 10(-13) seconds per second. Its characteristic age of 10(4) years is comparable to that estimated for the SNR. We speculate that most unidentified Galactic gamma-ray sources associated with star-forming regions and SNRs are such young pulsars.

  20. Observations of Spin-Powered Pulsars with the AGILE Gamma-Ray Telescope

    SciTech Connect

    Pellizzoni, A.; Pilia, M.; Possenti, M.; Fornari, F.; Caraveo, P.; Mereghetti, S.

    2008-12-24

    AGILE is a small gamma-ray astronomy satellite mission of the Italian Space Agency dedicated to high-energy astrophysics launched in 2007 April. It provides large sky exposure levels (> or approx. 10{sup 9} cm{sup 2} s per year on the Galactic Plane) with sensitivity peaking at E{approx}400 MeV(and simultaneous X-ray monitoring in the 18-60 keV band) where the bulk of pulsar energy output is typically released. Its {approx}1 {mu}s is absolute time tagging capability makes it perfectly suited for the study of gamma-ray pulsars following up on the CGRO/EGRET heritage. In this paper we summarize the timing results obtained during the first year of AGILE observations of the known gamma-ray pulsars Vela, Crab, Geminga and B 1706-4. AGILE collected a large number of gamma-ray photons from EGRET pulsars ({approx}10,000 pulsed counts for Vela) in only few months of observations unveiling new interesting features at sub-millisecond level in the pulsars' high-energy light-curves and paving the way to the discovery of new gamma-ray pulsars.

  1. A Pulsar and White Dwarf in an Unexpected Orbit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2016-11-01

    Astronomers have discovered a binary system consisting of a low-mass white dwarf and a millisecond pulsar but its eccentric orbit defies all expectations of how such binaries form.Observed orbital periods and binary eccentricities for binary millisecond pulsars. PSR J2234+0511 is the furthest right of the green stars that mark the five known eccentric systems. [Antoniadis et al. 2016]Unusual EccentricityIt would take a low-mass (0.4 solar masses) white dwarf over 100 billion years to form from the evolution of a single star. Since this is longer than the age of the universe, we believe that these lightweights are instead products of binary-star evolution and indeed, we observe many of these stars to still be in binary systems.But the binary evolution that can create a low-mass white dwarf includes a period of mass transfer, in which efficient tidal dissipation damps the systems orbital eccentricity. Because of this, we would expect all systems containing low-mass white dwarfs to have circular orbits.In the past, our observations of low-mass white dwarfmillisecond pulsar binaries have all been consistent with this expectation. But a new detection has thrown a wrench in the works: the unambiguous identification of a low-mass white dwarf thats in an eccentric (e=0.13) orbit with the millisecond pulsar PSR J2234+0511. How could this system have formed?Eliminating Formation ModelsLed by John Antoniadis (Dunlap Institute at University of Toronto), a team of scientists has used newly obtained optical photometry (from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey) and spectroscopy (from the Very Large Telescope in Chile) of the white dwarf to confirm the identification of this system.Antoniadis and collaborators then use measurements of the bodies masses (0.28 and 1.4 solar masses for the white dwarf and pulsar, respectively) and velocities, and constraints on the white dwarfs temperature, radius and surface gravity, to address three proposed models for the formation of this system.The 3D

  2. Delta XTE Spacecraft Solar Panel Deployment, Hangar AO at Cape Canaveral Air Station

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1995-01-01

    The footage shows technicians in the clean room checking and adjusting the deployment mechanism of the solar panel for XTE spacecraft. Other scenes show several technicians making adjustments to software for deployment of the solar panels.

  3. Fast radio bursts as giant pulses from young rapidly rotating pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lyutikov, Maxim; Burzawa, Lukasz; Popov, Sergei B.

    2016-10-01

    We discuss possible association of fast radio bursts (FRBs) with supergiant pulses emitted by young pulsars (ages ˜ tens to hundreds of years) born with regular magnetic field but very short - few milliseconds - spin periods. We assume that FRBs are extra-Galactic events coming from distances d ≲ 100 Mpc and that most of the dispersion measure (DM) comes from the material in the freshly ejected SNR shell. We then predict that for a given burst the DM should decrease with time and that FRBs are not expected to be seen below ˜300 MHz due to free-free absorption in the expanding ejecta. A supernova might have been detected years before the burst; FRBs are mostly associated with star-forming galaxies. The model requires that some pulsars are born with very fast spins, of the order of few milliseconds. The observed distribution of spin-down powers dot{E} in young energetic pulsars is consistent with equal birth rate per decade of dot{E}. Accepting this injection distribution and scaling the intrinsic brightness of FRBs with dot{E}, we predict the following properties of a large sample of FRBs: (i) the brightest observed events come from a broad distribution in distances; (ii) for repeating bursts brightness either remains nearly constant (if the spin-down time is longer than the age of the pulsar) or decreases with time otherwise; in the latter case DM ∝ dot{E}.

  4. Flares from Galactic Centre pulsars: a new class of X-ray transients?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giannios, Dimitrios; Lorimer, Duncan R.

    2016-06-01

    Despite intensive searches, the only pulsar within 0.1 pc of the central black hole in our Galaxy, Sgr A*, is a radio-loud magnetar. Since magnetars are rare among the Galactic neutron star population, and a large number of massive stars are already known in this region, the Galactic Centre (GC) should harbour a large number of neutron stars. Population syntheses suggest several thousand neutron stars may be present in the GC. Many of these could be highly energetic millisecond pulsars which are also proposed to be responsible for the GC gamma-ray excess. We propose that the presence of a neutron star within 0.03 pc from Sgr A* can be revealed by the shock interactions with the disc around the central black hole. As we demonstrate, these interactions result in observable transient non-thermal X-ray and gamma-ray emission over time-scales of months, provided that the spin-down luminosity of the neutron star is Lsd ˜ 1035 erg s-1. Current limits on the population of normal and millisecond pulsars in the GC region suggest that a number of such pulsars are present with such luminosities.

  5. Corrected Coordinates for the Possible OC to XTE J1550-56

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orosz, Jerome; Bailyn, Charles; Jain, Raj

    1998-09-01

    There was a slight error in the coordinates of the possible optical counterpart to XTE J1550-56 we reported in our previous telegram. The correct J2000 coordinates are RA = 15:50:58.78, DEC = -56:28:35.0. The coordinates printed on the finding chart available at http://www.astro.psu.edu/users/orosz/xte.html has been corrected (the arrow points to the correct object in any case). We regret this error.

  6. Pulsars:. Gigantic Nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Renxin

    What is the real nature of pulsars? This is essentially a question of the fundamental strong interaction between quarks at low-energy scale and hence of the non-perturbative quantum chromo-dynamics, the solution of which would certainly be meaningful for us to understand one of the seven millennium prize problems (i.e., "Yang-Mills Theory") named by the Clay Mathematical Institute. After a historical note, it is argued here that a pulsar is very similar to an extremely big nucleus, but is a little bit different from the gigantic nucleus speculated 80 years ago by L. Landau. The paper demonstrates the similarity between pulsars and gigantic nuclei from both points of view: the different manifestations of compact stars and the general behavior of the strong interaction.

  7. Modelling pulsar glitches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haskell, Brynmor

    2016-07-01

    Pulsar glitches, i.e. sudden jumps in the spin frequency of pulsars, are thought to be due to the presence of large scale superfluid components in neutron star interiors, and offer a unique insight into the physics of matter at high densities and low temperatures. Nevertheless, more than forty years after the first observation, many open questions still exist on the nature of pulsar glitches. In this talk I will review our current theoretical understanding of glitches, of their trigger mechanisms and of the hydrodynamics of superfluid neutron stars. In particular I will focus on 'superfluid vortex avalanches' and recent advances in applying this paradigm to glitch observations, and I will discuss hydrodynamical modelling of the post-glitch recovery.

  8. Synchrotron Self-Compton Emission from the Crab and Other Pulsars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.; Kalapotharakos, Konstantinos

    2015-01-01

    Results of a simulation of synchrotron-self Compton (SSC) emission from a rotation-powered pulsar are presented. The radiating particles are assumed to be both accelerated primary electrons and a spectrum of electron-positron pairs produced in cascades near the polar cap. They follow trajectories in a slot gap using 3D force-free magnetic field geometry, gaining pitch angles through resonant cyclotron absorption of radio photons, radiating and scattering synchrotron emission at high altitudes out to and beyond the light cylinder. Full angular dependence of the synchrotron photon density is simulated in the scattering and all processes are treated in the inertial observer frame. Spectra for the Crab and Vela pulsars as well as two energetic millisecond pulsars, B1821-24 and B1937+21 are simulated using this model. The simulation of the Crab pulsar radiation can reproduce both the flux level and the shape of the observed optical to hard X-ray emission assuming a pair multiplicity of M+ = 3x10(exp 5), as well as the very-high- energy emission above 50 GeV detected by MAGIC and VERITAS, with both the synchrotron and SSC components reflecting the shape of the pair spectrum. Simulations of Vela, B1821-24 and B1937+21, for M+ up to 10(exp 5), do not produce pair SSC emission that is detectable by current telescopes, indicating that only Crab-like pulsars produce significant SSC components. The pair synchrotron emission matches the observed X-ray spectrum of the millisecond pulsars and the predicted peak of this emission at 1-10 MeV would be detectable with planned Compton telescopes.

  9. Millisecond Timescale Synchrony among Hippocampal Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Amarasingham, Asohan; Mizuseki, Kenji; Buzsáki, György

    2014-01-01

    Inhibitory neurons in cortical circuits play critical roles in composing spike timing and oscillatory patterns in neuronal activity. These roles in turn require coherent activation of interneurons at different timescales. To investigate how the local circuitry provides for these activities, we applied resampled cross-correlation analyses to large-scale recordings of neuronal populations in the cornu ammonis 1 (CA1) and CA3 regions of the hippocampus of freely moving rats. Significant counts in the cross-correlation of cell pairs, relative to jittered surrogate spike-trains, allowed us to identify the effective couplings between neurons in CA1 and CA3 hippocampal regions on the timescale of milliseconds. In addition to putative excitatory and inhibitory monosynaptic connections, we uncovered prominent millisecond timescale synchrony between cell pairs, observed as peaks in the central 0 ms bin of cross-correlograms. This millisecond timescale synchrony appeared to be independent of network state, excitatory input, and γ oscillations. Moreover, it was frequently observed between cells of differing putative interneuronal type, arguing against gap junctions as the sole underlying source. Our observations corroborate recent in vitro findings suggesting that inhibition alone is sufficient to synchronize interneurons at such fast timescales. Moreover, we show that this synchronous spiking may cause stronger inhibition and rebound spiking in target neurons, pointing toward a potential function for millisecond synchrony of interneurons in shaping and affecting timing in pyramidal populations within and downstream from the circuit. PMID:25378164

  10. Pulsars and Fast Transients: Charting the Low-Frequency Radio Sky at High Time Resolution with LOFAR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hessels, Jason

    2012-01-01

    The LOw Frequency ARray (LOFAR) is a radio interferometric telescope that promises to open a largely unexplored window on transient sources in the "radio sky", from timescales of nanoseconds to years. An important aspect of this will be the study of radio-emitting neutron stars in their various incarnations: slow pulsars, young pulsars, millisecond pulsars, magnetars, rotating radio transients, intermittent pulsars, et cetera. Pulsars and their brethren are the prototype of the more general "fast transients": sub-second, dispersed radio bursts which point the way to extreme, and potentially still unknown phenomena. For instance, prompt radio bursts from supernovae and other extra-galactic bursts have been hypothesized; these could prove to be powerful cosmological probes. I will discuss LOFAR's impressive ability to observe pulsars and to greatly enlarge the discovery space for (even rare) fast transients. I will also present the latest pulsar observations made during LOFAR's commissioning period, as well as our first scientific results. These are demonstrating the power of observing techniques that will be crucial for the next generation of radio telescopes as well as the effort to better understand the dynamic nature of the Universe.

  11. Multiwavelength observations of XTE J1859+226

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haswell, C. A.; Chaty, S.; Cui, W.; Casares, J. V.; Hynes, R. I.

    2000-03-01

    On March 2 06:00 UT the transient source XTE J1859+226 had faded considerably to R=18.0 in the optical (IAC) and to a flux of about 13 mCrab (RXTE ASM). However, it clearly remains active in the X-rays. From extrapolating the last spectrum obtained with HST on 2000, February 8th we predict the following approximate magnitude and colours: V~18.4, U-B=-0.5, B-V = V-R = R-I = +0.4. A final simultaneous HST/RXTE visit to this source (most likely a black hole) is scheduled for 2000, March 5th between 06:10 and 13:41 UT.

  12. Review of overall parameters of giant radio pulses from the Crab pulsar and B1937+21

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bilous, A. V.; Kondratiev, V. I.; Popov, M. V.; Soglasnov, V. A.

    2008-02-01

    We present a review of observed parameters of giant radio pulses, based on the observations conducted by our group during recent years. The observations cover a broad frequency range of about 3 octaves, concentrating between 600 and 4850 MHz. Giant pulses of both the Crab pulsar and the millisecond pulsar B1937+21 were studied with the 70-m Tidbinbilla, the 100-m GBT, 64-m Kalyazin and Westerbork radio telescopes. We discuss pulse energy distribution, dependence of peak flux density from the pulse width, peculiarities of radio spectra, and polarization properties of giant radio pulses.

  13. Diffuse γ-ray emission from galactic pulsars

    SciTech Connect

    Calore, F.; Di Mauro, M.; Donato, F. E-mail: mattia.dimauro@to.infn.it

    2014-11-20

    Millisecond pulsars (MSPs) are old fast-spinning neutron stars that represent the second most abundant source population discovered by the Large Area Telescope (LAT) on board the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope (Fermi). As guaranteed γ-ray emitters, they might contribute non-negligibly to the diffuse emission measured at high latitudes by Fermi-LAT (i.e., the Isotropic Diffuse γ-Ray Background (IDGRB)), which is believed to arise from the superposition of several components of galactic and extragalactic origin. Additionally, γ-ray sources also contribute to the anisotropy of the IDGRB measured on small scales by Fermi-LAT. In this manuscript we aim to assess the contribution of the unresolved counterpart of the detected MSPs population to the IDGRB and the maximal fraction of the measured anisotropy produced by this source class. To this end, we model the MSPs' spatial distribution in the Galaxy and the γ-ray emission parameters by considering observational constraints coming from the Australia Telescope National Facility pulsar catalog and the Second Fermi-LAT Catalog of γ-ray pulsars. By simulating a large number of MSP populations through a Monte Carlo simulation, we compute the average diffuse emission and the anisotropy 1σ upper limit. We find that the emission from unresolved MSPs at 2 GeV, where the peak of the spectrum is located, is at most 0.9% of the measured IDGRB above 10° in latitude. The 1σ upper limit on the angular power for unresolved MSP sources turns out to be about a factor of 60 smaller than Fermi-LAT measurements above 30°. Our results indicate that this galactic source class represents a negligible contributor to the high-latitude γ-ray sky and confirm that most of the intensity and geometrical properties of the measured diffuse emission are imputable to other extragalactic source classes (e.g., blazars, misaligned active galactic nuclei, or star-forming galaxies). Nevertheless, because MSPs are more concentrated toward the

  14. Pulsars and Acceleration Sites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice

    2008-01-01

    Rotation-powered pulsars are excellent laboratories for the studying particle acceleration as well as fundamental physics of strong gravity, strong magnetic fields and relativity. But even forty years after their discovery, we still do not understand their pulsed emission at any wavelength. I will review both the basic physics of pulsars as well as the latest developments in understanding their high-energy emission. Special and general relativistic effects play important roles in pulsar emission, from inertial frame-dragging near the stellar surface to aberration, time-of-flight and retardation of the magnetic field near the light cylinder. Understanding how these effects determine what we observe at different wavelengths is critical to unraveling the emission physics. Fortunately the Gamma-Ray Large Area Space Telescope (GLAST), with launch in May 2008 will detect many new gamma-ray pulsars and test the predictions of these models with unprecedented sensitivity and energy resolution for gamma-rays in the range of 30 MeV to 300 GeV.

  15. The Pulsar Search Collaboratory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rosen, R.; Heatherly, S.; McLaughlin, M. A.; Kondratiev, V. I.; Boyles, J. R.; Wilson, M.; Lorimer, D. R.; Lynch, R.; Ransom, S.

    2010-01-01

    The Pulsar Search Collaboratory (PSC) (NSF #0737641) is a joint project between the National Radio Astronomy Observatory and West Virginia University designed to interest high school students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics related career paths by helping them to conduct authentic scientific research. The 3 year PSC program,…

  16. Nulling and intermittent pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Young, Neil

    2011-07-01

    Pulsars are extremely magnetised, rapidly rotating neutron stars which produce beams of electromagnetic radiation that sweep across the Earth. They exhibit a variety of interesting phenomena which allow us to gain insight into the physics of the emission process in these extreme magnetic fields. Intermittent pulsars are instrumental in this study due to their meta-stable configurations which result in abrupt cessation or re-activation of their radio emission. Their behaviour is believed to be tied to transient particle flow in the radio emission region. In the case of PSR B1931+24, the long-term modulation in the radio emission has been linked with the spin-down rate of the pulsar. Thus, offering a unique opportunity to study how magnetospheric changes can affect the magnetic braking of pulsars. Since the discovery of this behaviour in B1931+24, several other sources have been found to show similar radio emission modulation. Results from the analysis of the radio emission behaviour of these sources are presented, along with an update of the work carried out on observations of PSR B1931+24.

  17. Scientific uses of pulsars.

    PubMed

    Counselman, C C; Shapiro, I I

    1968-10-18

    The recently discovered celestial sources of pulsed radio energy can be used to test general relativity, to study the solar corona, and to determine the earth's orbit and ephemeris time. The vector positions and transverse velocities of pulsars can be measured with radio interferometers; in combination with pulse-arrival-time data, the distance determination will yield the average interstellar electron density.

  18. DEATH LINE OF GAMMA-RAY PULSARS WITH OUTER GAPS

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Ren-Bo; Hirotani, Kouichi E-mail: hirotani@tiara.sinica.edu.tw

    2011-08-01

    We analytically investigate the condition for a particle accelerator to be active in the outer magnetosphere of a rotation-powered pulsar. Within the accelerator (or the gap), the magnetic-field-aligned electric field accelerates electrons and positrons, which emit copious gamma-rays via the curvature process. If one of the gamma-rays emitted by a single pair materializes as a new pair on average, the gap is self-sustained. However, if the neutron-star spin-down rate decreases below a certain limit, the gap becomes no longer self-sustained and the gamma-ray emission ceases. We explicitly compute the multiplicity of cascading pairs and find that the obtained limit corresponds to a modification of the previously derived outer-gap death line. In addition to this traditional death line, we find another death line, which becomes important for millisecond pulsars, by separately considering the threshold of photon-photon pair production. Combining these traditional and new death lines, we give predictions on the detectability of gamma-ray pulsars with Fermi and AGILE. An implication for X-ray observations of heated polar-cap emission is also discussed.

  19. Formation of Short-Period Binary Pulsars in Globular Clusters.

    PubMed

    Rasio; Pfahl; Rappaport

    2000-03-20

    We present a new dynamical scenario for the formation of short-period binary millisecond pulsars in globular clusters. Our work is motivated by the recent observations of 20 radio pulsars in 47 Tuc. In a dense cluster such as 47 Tuc, most neutron stars acquire binary companions through exchange interactions with primordial binaries. The resulting systems have semimajor axes in the range approximately 0.1-1 AU and neutron star companion masses approximately 1-3 M middle dot in circle. For many of these systems, we find that when the companion evolves off the main sequence and fills its Roche lobe, the subsequent mass transfer is dynamically unstable. This leads to a common envelope phase and the formation of short-period neutron star-white dwarf binaries. For a significant fraction of these binaries, the decay of the orbit due to gravitational radiation will be followed by a period of stable mass transfer driven by a combination of gravitational radiation and tidal heating of the companion. The properties of the resulting short-period binaries match well those of observed binary pulsars in 47 Tuc.

  20. Student Discovers New Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2010-01-01

    A West Virginia high-school student has discovered a new pulsar, using data from the giant Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT). Shay Bloxton, 15, a participant in a project in which students analyze data from the radio telescope, spotted evidence of the pulsar on October 15. Bloxton, along with NRAO astronomers observed the object again one month later. The new observation confirmed that the object is a pulsar, a rotating, superdense neutron star. Bloxton is a sophomore at Nicholas County High School in Summersville, West Virginia. "I was very excited when I found out I had actually made a discovery," Bloxton said. She went to Green Bank in November to participate in the follow-up observation. She termed that visit "a great experience." "It also helped me learn a lot about how observations with the GBT are actually done," she added. The project in which she participated, called the Pulsar Search Collaboratory (PSC), is a joint project of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) and West Virginia University, funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation. Pulsars are known for their lighthouse-like beams of radio waves that sweep through space as the neutron star rotates, creating a pulse as the beam sweeps by the Earth. First discovered in 1967, pulsars serve as valuable natural "laboratories" for physicists studying exotic states of matter, quantum mechanics and General Relativity. The GBT, dedicated in 2000, has become one of the world's leading tools for discovering and studying pulsars. The PSC, led by NRAO Education Officer Sue Ann Heatherly and Project Director Rachel Rosen, includes training for teachers and student leaders, and provides parcels of data from the GBT to student teams. The project involves teachers and students in helping astronomers analyze data from 1500 hours of observing with the GBT. The 120 terabytes of data were produced by 70,000 individual pointings of the giant, 17-million-pound telescope. Some 300 hours of the

  1. Hybrid Imaging-Periodicity Search for Radio Pulsars: A Pilot VLA Survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Finn, Molly; Wharton, Robert; Chatterjee, Shami; Cordes, James M.; Kaplan, David L. A.; Burke-Spolaor, Sarah; Crawford, Fronefield; Deller, Adam; Lazio, Joseph; Ransom, Scott M.

    2015-01-01

    Almost all of the ~2300 known pulsars have been discovered using the standard period-dispersion measure (P-DM) search. In a P-DM search, time series intensity data are collected, de-dispersed for a set of trial DMs, and searched for periodic signals usually with frequency-domain algorithms but with fast-folding algorithms for long-period objects. Here we describe a hybrid imaging-periodicity search, an alternate method that uses an imaging survey to select radio point sources as pulsar candidates, followed by a deep P-DM search of these candidates using new or archival data. Since the hybrid search is largely conducted in the imaging domain of time-averaged intensities, it does not suffer reduced sensitivity (as the P-DM method does) when a pulsar signal is heavily modulated by orbital motion, pulse-broadened by scattering, or intermittently emitting (due to large-scale magnetospheric changes, eclipses, etc). As such, the hybrid method is sensitive to systems that are highly selected against in P-DM searches such as compact neutron star binaries, highly scattered millisecond pulsars, and pulsars with spin periods less than a millisecond (should they exist). Interferometric imaging also requires a lower significance threshold for detection than a periodicity search and is more robust against radio-frequency interference. We present preliminary results of a wide-field high dynamic range imaging survey conducted with the Jansky VLA at 1-2 GHz in a pilot program to test the efficacy of a hybrid imaging-periodicity search for radio pulsars in the Galactic plane. The survey region covers four square degrees (Galactic longitudes 32.5-36.5 degrees) using 38 pointings and overlaps with the Arecibo PALFA pulsar survey, which will be used as the periodicity component of our hybrid search. We analyze the observed properties of the 23 known radio pulsars in the survey region and discuss the implications for the selection process needed to narrow the thousands of detected

  2. On the randomness of pulsar nulls

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Redman, Stephen L.; Rankin, Joanna M.

    2009-05-01

    Pulsar nulling is not always a random process; most pulsars, in fact, null non-randomly. The Wald-Wolfowitz statistical runs test is a simple diagnostic that pulsar astronomers can use to identify pulsars that have non-random nulls. It is not clear at this point how the dichotomy in pulsar nulling randomness is related to the underlying nulling phenomenon, but its nature suggests that there are at least two distinct reasons that pulsars null.

  3. The Optimization of GBT Pulsar Data for the GBNCC Pulsar Survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gordon, Ashlee Nicole; Green Bank NRAO, GBNCC

    2016-01-01

    The Green Bank Telescope collects data from the Green Bank Northern Celestial Cap (GBNCC) pulsar survey in order to find new pulsars within its sensitivity and also, to confirm previously found pulsars within its sensitivity range. The collected data is then loaded into the CyberSKA website database where astronomers are tasked with rating the data sets based on its potential to be a pulsar from 0(unclassified), 1(class 1 pulsar), 2(class 2 pulsar), 3(class 3 pulsar), 4(radio frequency interference), 5(not a pulsar), 6(know pulsar), 7(harmonic of a known pulsar). This specific research done was to use previously classified pulsars to create a python script that will automatically identify the data set as a pulsar or a non-pulsar. After finding the recurring frequencies of radio frequency interference (RFI), the frequencies were then added to a pipeline to further discern pulsars from RFI.

  4. Probing gamma-ray emissions of Fermi-LAT pulsars with a non-stationary outer gap model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takata, J.; Ng, C. W.; Cheng, K. S.

    2016-02-01

    We explore a non-stationary outer gap scenario for gamma-ray emission process in pulsar magnetosphere. Electrons/positrons that migrate along the magnetic field line and enter the outer gap from the outer/inner boundaries activate the pair-creation cascade and high-energy emission process. In our model, the rate of the particle injection at the gap boundaries is key physical quantity to control the gap structure and properties of the gamma-ray spectrum. Our model assumes that the injection rate is time variable and the observed gamma-ray spectrum are superposition of the emissions from different gap structures with different injection rates at the gap boundaries. The calculated spectrum superposed by assuming power law distribution of the particle injection rate can reproduce sub-exponential cut-off feature in the gamma-ray spectrum observed by Fermi-LAT. We fit the phase-averaged spectra for 43 young/middle-age pulsars and 14 millisecond pulsars with the model. Our results imply that (1) a larger particle injection at the gap boundaries is more frequent for the pulsar with a larger spin-down power and (2) outer gap with an injection rate much smaller than the Goldreich-Julian value produces observed >10 GeV emissions. Fermi-LAT gamma-ray pulsars show that (i) the observed gamma-ray spectrum below cut-off energy tends to be softer for the pulsar with a higher spin-down rate and (ii) the second peak is more prominent in higher energy bands. Based on the results of the fitting, we describe possible theoretical interpretations for these observational properties. We also briefly discuss Crab-like millisecond pulsars that show phase-aligned radio and gamma-ray pulses.

  5. Why are Pulsar Planets Rare?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Rebecca G.; Livio, Mario; Palaniswamy, Divya

    2016-12-01

    Pulsar timing observations have revealed planets around only a few pulsars. We suggest that the rarity of these planets is due mainly to two effects. First, we show that the most likely formation mechanism requires the destruction of a companion star. Only pulsars with a suitable companion (with an extreme mass ratio) are able to form planets. Second, while a dead zone (a region of low turbulence) in the disk is generally thought to be essential for planet formation, it is most probably rare in disks around pulsars, because of the irradiation from the pulsar. The irradiation strongly heats the inner parts of the disk, thus pushing the inner boundary of the dead zone out. We suggest that the rarity of pulsar planets can be explained by the low probability for these two requirements to be satisfied: a very low-mass companion and a dead zone.

  6. Superfine Structure of Jovian Millisecond Radio Bursts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rucker, H. O.; Litvinenko, G.; Taubenschuss, U.; Leitner, M.; Lecacheux, A.; Konovalenko, A.

    2004-05-01

    Jupiter decameter (DAM) radio emission mainly consists of wide-band radio storms with time scales in seconds (L-bursts) and milliseconds (S-bursts), the latter comprising a series of short pulses with duration of a few to tens of milliseconds, and strongly controlled by the satellite Io. First in-depth analysis of the subpulse structure was made by Carr and Reyes (1999) with the discovery of successive deep envelope modulations, with time resolution better than 30 microseconds, and during these subpulse periods the discovery of phase coherence. Recent observations by means of the newly developed waveform receiver (at present unsurpassed in spectral resolution) and connected to the decameter world-largest radio telescope UTR-2 (Kharkov) yielded waveform measurements of Jovian S-bursts which have been analyzed by the wavelet analysis method. Main outcome of the present investigation is the detection of clear signatures of microsecond modulations, providing evidence of a superfine burst structure with the following parameters: a) instantaneous frequency band of one separated microsecond pulse of 100 to 300 kHz, b) time duration of one separated micropulse of 6 to 15 microseconds, and c) time interval between closest subsequent microsecond pulses of 5 to 25 microseconds. The apparent frequency drift of a millisecond burst evidently results from sequentially decreasing frequencies of subsequent subpulses, each representing an island of phase coherent gyrating electron bunches.

  7. Fermi LAT Pulsed Detection of PSR J0737-3039A in the Double Pulsar System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guillemot, L.; Kramer, M.; Johnson, T. J.; Craig, H. A.; Romani, R. W.; Venter, C.; Harding, A. K.; Ferdman, R. D.; Stairs, I. H.; Kerr, M.

    2013-01-01

    We report the Fermi Large Area Telescope discovery of gamma-ray pulsations from the 22.7 ms pulsar A in the double pulsar system J0737-3039A/B. This is the first mildly recycled millisecond pulsar (MSP) detected in the GeV domain. The 2.7 s companion object PSR J0737-3039B is not detected in gamma rays. PSR J0737-3039A is a faint gamma-ray emitter, so that its spectral properties are only weakly constrained; however, its measured efficiency is typical of other MSPs. The two peaks of the gamma-ray light curve are separated by roughly half a rotation and are well offset from the radio and X-ray emission, suggesting that the GeV radiation originates in a distinct part of the magnetosphere from the other types of emission. From the modeling of the radio and the gamma-ray emission profiles and the analysis of radio polarization data, we constrain the magnetic inclination alpha and the viewing angle zeta to be close to 90 deg., which is consistent with independent studies of the radio emission from PSR J0737-3039A. A small misalignment angle between the pulsar's spin axis and the system's orbital axis is therefore favored, supporting the hypothesis that pulsar B was formed in a nearly symmetric supernova explosion as has been discussed in the literature already.

  8. Numerical MHD modelling of composite SNR: The effect of pulsar birth period on pulsar wind parameters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Jager, Ocker

    The γ-ray flux Fγ of a pulsar wind nebula in the GLAST/LAT domain can be shown to depend 2 on the pulsar birth period P0 as Fγ ∝ 1/P0 . Furthermore, it is also known that the PWN size depends on P0 , with the PWN radius overtaking the SNR forward shock if P0 is in the few millisecond domain. Whereas this is an interesting field of study, longer birth periods lead to slower PWN expansion, in which case the reverse shock compresses the PWN, One can therefore follow the time history of adiabatic losses versus adiabatic heating, which is important for multiwavelength modelling. We model composite SNRs as the time evolution of a PWN with its associated SNR forward/reverse shock and reflection wave. The effect of magnetic field is included via Faraday's induction equation. A high resolution numerical simulation scheme is followed whereby the explosion of a SNR with total explosion energy Esnr , ejecta mass Mej , ISM density ρISM and PWN energy via its pulsar birth period P0 , are followed through the Euler equations, describing inviscid flow. They are solved giving ρi (density), vi (velocity) and Pi (the pressure) with time. These equations correspond to the Navier-Stokes equations with zero viscosity and heat conduction terms. They describe the balance of mass, momentum and energy of different fluids, e.g. i = 1, 2, 3, ... and the interaction between these fluids are described by a source term Q(t), which, in the case of the PWN, is described by the spindown of the pulsar. We consider a two fluid scenario with non-relativistic (SNR) and relativistic (PWN) speeds (i = 1, 2), i.e. adiabatic indices of 5/3 and 4/3 respectively. The compressed ISM magnetic field is calculated through Faraday's Law. Note however that this is not a full MHD treatment since no backreaction on the fluid is considered. For the SNR we only consider the field of the ISM which gets compressed as the ISM is swept-up by the forward shock of the SNR. The same induction equation is also used to

  9. Evolution of redback radio pulsars in globular clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benvenuto, O. G.; De Vito, M. A.; Horvath, J. E.

    2017-01-01

    Context. We study the evolution of close binary systems composed of a normal, intermediate mass star and a neutron star considering a chemical composition typical of that present in globular clusters (Z = 0.001). Aims: We look for similarities and differences with respect to solar composition donor stars, which we have extensively studied in the past. As a definite example, we perform an application on one of the redbacks located in a globular cluster. Methods: We performed a detailed grid of models in order to find systems that represent the so-called redback binary radio pulsar systems with donor star masses between 0.6 and 2.0 solar masses and orbital periods in the range 0.2-0.9 d. Results: We find that the evolution of these binary systems is rather similar to those corresponding to solar composition objects, allowing us to account for the occurrence of redbacks in globular clusters, as the main physical ingredient is the irradiation feedback. Redback systems are in the quasi-RLOF state, that is, almost filling their corresponding Roche lobe. During the irradiation cycle the system alternates between semi-detached and detached states. While detached the system appears as a binary millisecond pulsar, called a redback. Circumstellar material, as seen in redbacks, is left behind after the previous semi-detached phase. Conclusions: The evolution of binary radio pulsar systems considering irradiation successfully accounts for, and provides a way for, the occurrence of redback pulsars in low-metallicity environments such as globular clusters. This is the case despite possible effects of the low metal content of the donor star that could drive systems away from redback configuration.

  10. Pulsar Pair Cascades in Magnetic Fields with Offset Polar Caps

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harding, Alice K.; Muslimov, Alex G.

    2012-01-01

    Neutron star magnetic fields may have polar caps (PC) that are offset from the dipole axis, through field-line sweepback near the light cylinder or non-symmetric currents within the star. The effects of such offsets on electron-positron pair cascades are investigated, using simple models of dipole magnetic fields with small distortions that shift the PCs by different amounts or directions. Using a Monte Carlo pair cascade simulation, we explore the changes in the pair spectrum, multiplicity and energy flux across the PC, as well as the trends in pair flux and pair energy flux with spin-down luminosity, L(sub sd). We also give an estimate of the distribution of heating flux from returning positrons on the PC for different offsets. We find that even modest offsets can produce significant increases in pair multiplicity, especially for pulsars that are near or beyond the pair death lines for centered PCs, primarily because of higher accelerating fields. Pair spectra cover several decades in energy, with the spectral range of millisecond pulsars (MSPs) two orders of magnitude higher than for normal pulsars, and PC offsets allow significant extension of all spectra to lower pair energies. We find that the total PC pair luminosity L(sub pair) is proportional to L(sub sd), with L(sub pair) approximates 10(exp -3) L(sub sd) for normal pulsars and L(sub pair) approximates 10(exp -2) L(sub sd) for MSPs. Remarkably, the total PC heating luminosity for even large offsets increases by less than a factor of two, even though the PC area increases by much larger factors, because most of the heating occurs near the magnetic axis.

  11. The Extended Pulsar Magnetosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Constantinos, Kalapotharakos; Demosthenes, Kazanas; Ioannis, Contopoulos

    2012-01-01

    We present the structure of the 3D ideal MHD pulsar magnetosphere to a radius ten times that of the light cylinder, a distance about an order of magnitude larger than any previous such numerical treatment. Its overall structure exhibits a stable, smooth, well-defined undulating current sheet which approaches the kinematic split monopole solution of Bogovalov 1999 only after a careful introduction of diffusivity even in the highest resolution simulations. It also exhibits an intriguing spiral region at the crossing of two zero charge surfaces on the current sheet, which shows a destabilizing behavior more prominent in higher resolution simulations. We discuss the possibility that this region is physically (and not numerically) unstable. Finally, we present the spiral pulsar antenna radiation pattern.

  12. Pulsar extinction. [astrophysics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sturrock, P. A.; Baker, K.; Turk, J. S.

    1975-01-01

    Radio emission from pulsars, attributed to an instability associated with the creation of electron-positron pairs from gamma rays was investigated. The condition for pair creation therefore lead to an extinction condition. The relevant physical processes were analyzed in the context of a mathematical model, according to which radiation originated at the polar caps and magnetic field lines changed from a closed configuration to an open configuration at the force balance or corotation radius.

  13. Electrodynamics of Pulsar Magnetospheres

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cerutti, Benoît; Beloborodov, Andrei M.

    2016-12-01

    We review electrodynamics of rotating magnetized neutron stars, from the early vacuum model to recent numerical experiments with plasma-filled magnetospheres. Significant progress became possible due to the development of global particle-in-cell simulations which capture particle acceleration, emission of high-energy photons, and electron-positron pair creation. The numerical experiments show from first principles how and where electric gaps form, and promise to explain the observed pulsar activity from radio waves to gamma-rays.

  14. a Surprise from the Pulsar in the Crab Nebula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1995-11-01

    New observations of the spectrum of the rapidly spinning neutron star (the `pulsar') in the Crab Nebula have been carried out with the ESO 3.5-metre New Technology Telescope (NTT) by a group of Italian astronomers [1]. Because of greatly improved spectral resolution which allows to register even very fine details in the pulsar's spectrum, they are able to determine for the first time with high accuracy the overall dependance of the emission on wavelength, i.e. the `shape' of the spectrum. Quite unexpectedly, they also detect a hitherto unknown 100 A (10 nm) broad `absorption dip', which can be securely attributed to the pulsar. These results open an exciting new window for the study of the extreme physical processes close to a pulsar. The Nature of Pulsars It is estimated that there may be as many as 100 million neutron stars in our Galaxy. A neutron star is the superdense remnant of the extremely violent supernova explosion that occurs at the end of the life of a comparatively massive star. In fact, all stars that are more than about 6 times heavier than the Sun are believed to end their lives as supernovae. During the explosion, the central core of the dying star collapses in a few milliseconds and the matter at the centre is compressed to a density comparable to that of an atomic nucleus. Due to the enormous inward pressure, the atomic particles are squeezed together into a kind of neutron jam. The outcome is the formation of a neutron star with a diameter of 10-15 kilometres, weighing as much as the Sun. In accordance with the physical law that implies that the rotation momentum of the exploding star must be conserved, newborn neutron stars will rotate very rapidly around their axis, in some cases as fast as 100 times per second. In the same way, the new neutron star is expected to possess a strong magnetic field. Of these myriads of neutron stars, about 700 have been observed to emit radio pulses (hence the name `pulsar'). A few of these can also be detected

  15. The pulsar spectral index distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bates, S. D.; Lorimer, D. R.; Verbiest, J. P. W.

    2013-05-01

    The flux-density spectra of radio pulsars are known to be steep and, to first order, described by a power-law relationship of the form Sν ∝ να, where Sν is the flux density at some frequency ν and α is the spectral index. Although measurements of α have been made over the years for several hundred pulsars, a study of the intrinsic distribution of pulsar spectra has not been carried out. From the result of pulsar surveys carried out at three different radio frequencies, we use population synthesis techniques and a likelihood analysis to deduce what underlying spectral index distribution is required to replicate the results of these surveys. We find that in general the results of the surveys can be modelled by a Gaussian distribution of spectral indices with a mean of -1.4 and unit standard deviation. We also consider the impact of the so-called gigahertz-peaked spectrum pulsars proposed by Kijak et al. The fraction of peaked-spectrum sources in the population with any significant turnover at low frequencies appears to be at most 10 per cent. We demonstrate that high-frequency (>2 GHz) surveys preferentially select flatter spectrum pulsars and the converse is true for lower frequency (<1 GHz) surveys. This implies that any correlations between α and other pulsar parameters (for example age or magnetic field) need to carefully account for selection biases in pulsar surveys. We also expect that many known pulsars which have been detected at high frequencies will have shallow, or positive, spectral indices. The majority of pulsars do not have recorded flux density measurements over a wide frequency range, making it impossible to constrain their spectral shapes. We also suggest that such measurements would allow an improved description of any populations of pulsars with `non-standard' spectra. Further refinements to this picture will soon be possible from the results of surveys with the Green Bank Telescope and LOFAR.

  16. Observing the Plasma-Physical Processes of Pulsar Radio Emission with Arecibo

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rankin, Joanna M.

    2017-01-01

    With their enormous densities and fields, neutron stars entail some of the most exotic physics in the cosmos. Similarly, the physical mechanisms of pulsar radio emission are no less exotic, and we are only now beginning to understand them. The talk will provide an introduction to the phenomenology of radio pulsar emission and focus on those aspects of the exquisite Arecibo observations that bear on their challenging emission physics.The commonalities of the radio beamforms of most slow pulsars (and some millisecond pulsars) argue strongly that their magnetic fields have a nearly dipolar structure at the height of their radio emission regions. These heights can often be determined by aberration/retardation analyses. Similarly, measurement of the orientation of the polarized radio emission with respect to the emitting magnetic field facilitates identification of the physical(X/O) emission modes and study of the plasma coupling to the electromagnetic radiation.While the physics of primary plasma generation above the pulsar polar cap is only beginning to be understood, it is clear that the radio pulsars we see are able to generate copious amounts of electron-positron plasma in their emission regions. Within the nearly dipolar field structure of these emission regions, the plasma density is near to that of the Goldreich-Julian model, and so the physical conditions in these regions can be accurately estimated.These conditions show that the plasma frequencies in the emission regions are much higher than the frequency of the emitted radiation, such that the plasma couples most easily to the extraordinary mode as observed. Therefore, the only surviving emission mechanism is curvature radiation from charged solitons, produced by the two-stream instability. Such soliton emission has probably been observed directly in the Crab pulsar; however, a physical theory of charged soliton radiation does not yet exist.

  17. Searching for Planets Around Pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2015-09-01

    Did you know that the very first exoplanets ever confirmed were found around a pulsar? The precise timing measurements of pulsar PSR 1257+12 were what made the discovery of its planetary companions possible. Yet surprisingly, though weve discovered thousands of exoplanets since then, only one other planet has ever been confirmed around a pulsar. Now, a team of CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science researchers are trying to figure out why.Formation ChallengesThe lack of detected pulsar planets may simply reflect the fact that getting a pulsar-planet system is challenging! There are three main pathways:The planet formed before the host star became a pulsar which means it somehow survived its star going supernova (yikes!).The planet formed elsewhere and was captured by the pulsar.The planet formed out of the debris of the supernova explosion.The first two options, if even possible, are likely to be rare occurrences but the third option shows some promise. In this scenario, after the supernova explosion, a small fraction of the material falls back toward the stellar remnant and is recaptured, forming what is known as a supernova fallback disk. According to this model, planets could potentially form out of this disk.Disk ImplicationsLed by Matthew Kerr, the CSIRO astronomers set out to systematically look for these potential planets that might have formed in situ around pulsars. They searched a sample of 151 young, energetic pulsars, scouring seven years of pulse time-of-arrival data for periodic variation that could signal the presence of planetary companions. Their methods to mitigate pulsar timing noise and model realistic orbits allowed them to have good sensitivity to low-mass planets.The results? They found no conclusive evidence that any of these pulsars have planets.This outcome carries with it some significant implications. The pulsar sample spans 2 Myr in age, in which planets should have had enough time to form in debris disks. The fact that none were detected

  18. Magnetars and white dwarf pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lobato, Ronaldo V.; Malheiro, Manuel; Coelho, Jaziel G.

    2016-07-01

    The anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs) and soft gamma-ray repeaters (SGRs) are a class of pulsars understood as neutron stars (NSs) with super strong surface magnetic fields, namely B ≳ 1014G, and for that reason are known as magnetars. However, in the last years, some SGRs/AXPs with low surface magnetic fields B ˜ (1012-1013)G have been detected, challenging the magnetar description. Moreover, some fast and very magnetic white dwarfs (WDs) have also been observed, and at least one showed X-ray energy emission as an ordinary pulsar. Following this fact, an alternative model based on WDs pulsars has been proposed to explain this special class of pulsars. In this model, AXPs and SGRs as dense and magnetized WDs can have surface magnetic field B ˜ 107-1010 G and rotate very fast with frequencies Ω ˜ 1rad/s, consistent with the observed rotation periods P ˜ (2-12)s.

  19. Interstellar Medium Effects on Radio Pulsars PSR B1937+21 and PSR B2224+65, and Implications for Gravitational Wave Detection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dolch, Timothy; Chatterjee, Shami; Cordes, James M.; Paul, Demorest; Halmrast, Daniel; Jessup, Cody; Jones, Glenn; Lam, Michael T.; Lyne, Andrew; McLaughlin, Maura; Ramette, Joshua; Stinebring, Dan; Stappers, Benjamin; Stovall, Kevin

    2017-01-01

    Noise in pulsar timing residuals due to the ionized interstellar medium (IISM) is a critical limiting factor for pulsar timing arrays (PTAs) as gravitational wave detectors. PSR B1937+21 is the brightest millisecond pulsar in the northern sky and serves as a laboratory for studying uncertainties and systematic changes in pulse times-of-arrival. Its high flux, its high degree of scattering along the line-of-sight, and its giant pulses interact in a dynamic way to affect individual times-of-arrival on different timescales. Noise budget results on this pulsar are relevant to understanding the timing of other millisecond pulsars. We present data from an Arecibo Observatory campaign on PSR B1937+21 at 1.4GHz, the standard radio frequency at which the times-of-arrival of PSR B1937+21 and other PTA pulsars are routinely measured for the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves (NANOGrav). The campaign was strategized to probe the pulsar’s noise budget, particularly with respect to the IISM from high S/N dynamic spectra that show flux distributed irregularly across the bandwidth from interstellar scintillation. Similarly, PSR B2224+65, while not a NANOGrav pulsar, is associated with the Guitar Nebula, a region with significant ISM density fluctuations. We also present data from a Green Bank Telescope monitoring campaign on PSR B2224+65 at 342MHz and 1.4GHz, which uses dispersion measure (DM) variations to constrain the influence of the IISM on the pulsar’s times-of-arrival. By utilizing the dynamic spectra, single pulse, and DM data from these campaigns, we analyze the noise budgets of these pulsars on very short and very long timescales due to the changing intervening IISM.

  20. New Millisecond Isomer Lifetime Measurements at LANSCE

    SciTech Connect

    Devlin, M. Nelson, R.O.; Fotiades, N.; O'Donnell, J.M.

    2014-06-15

    New half-life measurements have been made of the millisecond isomers {sup 71m}Ge, {sup 114m2}I, {sup 208m}Bi, {sup 88m1}Y, {sup 88m2}Y, and {sup 75m}As populated in neutron-induced reactions. These measurements were made using the unique time structure of the LANSCE/WNR neutron source, by observing the γ-ray decays of the isomers during the time between the LANSCE proton macropulses. Two different LANSCE proton beam time structures were used. The GEANIE array of HPGe detectors was used to detect the γ-ray decays.

  1. Doppler Imaging of Black Hole SYSTEMS:XTE J1118+480.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Callanan, Paul; Perres-Torres, Manuel; Garcia, Michael

    We present time-resolved spectroscopy of the black-hole candidate XTE J1118+480 obtained during its approach to quiescence. Doppler imaging of the intense Hα line shows persistent emission with an origin in the gas stream/hotspot. In addition the Doppler maps show enhanced emission in the +Vx -Vy quadrant clearing incompatible with a stream/hotspot origin. We favour a non-uniform disk intensity distribution due to tidal effects as the origin of this emission. We compare our map with that of XTE J1118+480 in outburst as well as with those of other transient systems in quiescence

  2. The GMRT High Resolution Southern Sky Survey for Pulsars and Transients. I. Survey Description and Initial Discoveries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhattacharyya, B.; Cooper, S.; Malenta, M.; Roy, J.; Chengalur, J.; Keith, M.; Kudale, S.; McLaughlin, M.; Ransom, S. M.; Ray, P. S.; Stappers, B. W.

    2016-02-01

    We are conducting a survey for pulsars and transients using the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope (GMRT). The GMRT High Resolution Southern Sky (GHRSS) survey is an off-Galactic plane (| b| > 5) survey in the declination range -40° to -54° at 322 MHz. With the high time (up to 30.72 μs) and frequency (up to 0.016275 MHz) resolution observing modes, the 5σ detection limit is 0.5 mJy for a 2 ms pulsar with a 10% duty cycle at 322 MHz. The total GHRSS sky coverage of 2866 deg2 will result from 1953 pointings, each covering 1.8 deg2. The 10σ detection limit for a 5 ms transient burst is 1.6 Jy for the GHRSS survey. In addition, the GHRSS survey can reveal transient events like rotating radio transients or fast radio bursts. With 35% of the survey completed (i.e., 1000 deg2), we report the discovery of 10 pulsars, 1 of which is a millisecond pulsar (MSP), which is among the highest pulsar per square degree discovery rates for any off-Galactic plane survey. We re-detected 23 known in-beam pulsars. Utilizing the imaging capability of the GMRT, we also localized four of the GHRSS pulsars (including the MSP) in the gated image plane within ±10″. We demonstrated rapid convergence in pulsar timing with a more precise position than is possible with single-dish discoveries. We also show that we can localize the brightest transient sources with simultaneously obtained lower time resolution imaging data, demonstrating a technique that may have application in the Square Kilometre Array.

  3. First Detection of a Pulsar Bow Shock Nebula in Far-UV: PSR J0437-4715

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rangelov, Blagoy; Pavlov, George G.; Kargaltsev, Oleg; Durant, Martin; Bykov, Andrei M.; Krassilchtchikov, Alexandre

    2016-11-01

    Pulsars traveling at supersonic speeds are often accompanied by cometary bow shocks seen in Hα. We report on the first detection of a pulsar bow shock in the far-ultraviolet (FUV). We detected it in FUV images of the nearest millisecond pulsar J0437-4715 obtained with the Hubble Space Telescope. The images reveal a bow-like structure positionally coincident with part of the previously detected Hα bow shock, with an apex at 10″ ahead of the moving pulsar. Its FUV luminosity, L(1250{--}2000 \\mathringA )≈ 5 × {10}28 erg s-1, exceeds the Hα luminosity from the same area by a factor of 10. The FUV emission could be produced by the shocked interstellar medium matter or, less likely, by relativistic pulsar wind electrons confined by strong magnetic field fluctuations in the bow shock. In addition, in the FUV images we found a puzzling extended (≃3″ in size) structure overlapping with the limb of the bow shock. If related to the bow shock, it could be produced by an inhomogeneity in the ambient medium or an instability in the bow shock. We also report on a previously undetected X-ray emission extending for about 5″ ahead of the pulsar, possibly a pulsar wind nebula created by shocked pulsar wind, with a luminosity L(0.5-8 keV) ˜ 3 × 1028 erg s-1. Based on observations made with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS 5-26555. These observations are associated with programs GO 12917 and GO 10568.

  4. Gravitational waves from binary supermassive black holes missing in pulsar observations.

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-25

    Gravitational waves are expected to be radiated by supermassive black hole binaries formed during galaxy mergers. A stochastic superposition of gravitational waves from all such binary systems would modulate the arrival times of pulses from radio pulsars. Using observations of millisecond pulsars obtained with the Parkes radio telescope, we constrained the characteristic amplitude of this background, A(c,yr), to be <1.0 × 10(-15) with 95% confidence. This limit excludes predicted ranges for A(c,yr) from current models with 91 to 99.7% probability. We conclude that binary evolution is either stalled or dramatically accelerated by galactic-center environments and that higher-cadence and shorter-wavelength observations would be more sensitive to gravitational waves.