Universe 

RXTE Sees Eclipses from Fast X-ray Pulsar

Astronomers using NASA's Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) have found the first fast X-ray pulsar to be eclipsed by its companion star. Further studies of this unique stellar system will shed light on some of the most compressed matter in the universe and test a key prediction of Einstein's relativity theory.

Known as Swift J1749.4-2807 — J1749 for short — the system erupted with an X-ray outburst on April 10. During the event, RXTE observed three eclipses, detected X-ray pulses that identified the neutron star as a pulsar, and even recorded pulse variations that indicated the neutron star's orbital motion. More information here.


For More Information

http://www.nasa.gov/topics/universe/features/eclipsing-pulsar.html


Credits

Chris Smith (UMBC): Animator
Scott Wiessinger (UMBC): Animator
Scott Wiessinger (UMBC): Producer
Francis Reddy (SPSYS): Writer
Please give credit for this item to:
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

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http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/goto?10625

This item is part of these series:
Astrophysics Animations
Astrophysics Stills

Goddard TV Tape:
G2010-139 -- Various Small Astrophysics projects

Keywords:
SVS >> HDTV
SVS >> Neutron Star
DLESE >> Space science
SVS >> X-ray
SVS >> Astrophysics
SVS >> Universe
SVS >> Pulsar
SVS >> Red Giant
SVS >> Binary Star
SVS >> Star
NASA Science >> Universe