Vela X-ray

img_lrg/vela_xray.jpg not found

© NASA, PSU, G. Pavlov et al., courtesy of Chandra X-ray Observatory.

The pulsar at the center of the photograph has a rotational period of ~89 millisecs; every few years, without warning, it suddenly increases its spin rate—a glitch representing a jump in its frequency of magnitude ~ few parts in a million. New research uses the size, frequency, and post-glitch behavior of such glitch events to establish the presence of neutron and proton superfluids in the crust and core of the neutron star and put constraints on the equation of state of neutron matter at densities greater than that found in terrestrial atomic nuclei. (Unit: 8)