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The Vela Nebula γ-Ray Emitting Pulsar PSR J0835-4510

25 Apr 2012, 10:30 UTC
The Vela Nebula γ-Ray Emitting Pulsar PSR J0835-4510
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The Vela pulsar* is, in essence, an extremely ultra-relativistic particle emitter (Cheng et al. 1986; Yoshikoshi et al. 1997; Fierro et al. 1998), emitting γ-rays at energies of 109 keV (0.000001602J, 16.02 erg) and, as such, it is considered the brightest persistent source in the γ-ray sky. The Vela pulsar (a.k.a PSR J0835-4510; PSR B0833-45) has been known to astronomers ever since it was first observed to emit radio-waves at P = 0.0893 s intervals (Large et al. 1968) whilst simultaneously confirming the compact remnant-supernovae core-collapse paradigm. PSR J0835-4510 is embedded in a flat spectrum radio synchrotron nebula (Frail et al. 1997) (i.e. the young Vela supernova remnant known as RX 0835.20-4510) at a distance of 287±19 pc (Dodson et al. 2003) and is surrounded by a bright X-ray wind nebula displaying remarkable toroidal symmetry (Helfand et al. 2001; Pavlov et al. 2003).
Fig. 1: An optical wide field view of the Vela supernova remnant. (Credit: Southern H-Alpha Sky Survey Atlas ‘SHASSA’).
N.B.* Pulsars are rapidly spinning neutron stars, extremely dense stars (formed out of the gravitational core-collapse of massive main sequence stars) composed almost entirely of neutrons and having a diameter of only 20 km or less (Shapiro & ...

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