It is the “black widow” pulsar which breaks records by being the most massive neutron star to date

The stellar object is considered the densest seen from Earth, as neutrons and quarks settle inside its core. However, no evidence of exotic matter such as kaons, which are strange quarks, has been observed.

A group of researchers from American scientific institutions has revealed that a “black widow” type pulsar, designated as PSR J0952-0670set a record for being the most massive neutron star known to date, since its mass is 2.35 times greater than that of the Sun (0.17 solar masses), reported this Tuesday the University of California at Berkeley.

According to the study authors, published in The Astrophysical Journal Letters, el PSR J0952-0670, that is located a 3000 light years from Earth, is part of a binary cosmic system called “Black Widow” because it absorbs matter from its smaller stellar companion, much like its arachnid namesake. This increases both the mass and the rotational speed of the neutron star.

PSR J0952-0670 is one of the fastest pulsars in the Milky Way.

Astronomers discover the brightest pulsar star ever detected outside the Milky Way

Scientists have determined that PSR J0952-0670 spins at a rate of 707 times per second, making it one of the fastest spinning pulsars in the Milky Way. Likewise, they considered that the pulsar is the densest stellar object seen from Earth, since neutrons and quarks are deposited inside its core, which constitute the natural protons and neutrons. However, they reiterated that there is no exotic matter like kaons, which are particles containing a strange quark.

“A high peak mass for neutron stars suggests that it is a mixture of nuclei and its quarks are dissolved from top to bottom to the nucleus,” said the Stanford University astronomer , Roger Romani, adding that “this rules out many proposed states of matter, especially those with exotic interior composition”.

To calculate the mass of the neutron star, the researchers made comparisons of the visible light spectrum of its stellar companion through observations with the Low-Resolution Imaging Spectrometer. Images obtained with the Keck I telescope at the WM Keck Observatory, located in Hawaii. This evaluation also allowed us to know the orbital speed of the smallest star (6.4 hours), as well as its size (20 times the mass of Jupiter).

They observe how a black hole

Additionally, they are considering the possibility of it becoming an isolated millisecond pulsar, once PSR J0952-0670 has completely devoured its star. This name is due to the fact that the pulsar will have an even faster rotation speed.

“As the companion star evolves and begins to become a red giant, matter pours onto the neutron star, causing it to spin.”, noted Alexei Filippenko, who assured that “when it rotates, it now becomes incredibly excited, and a wind of particles begins to come out of the neutron star.” “This wind then hits the donor star and begins to release material, and over time the mass of the donor star decreases to that of a planet. If more time passes, it completely disappears,” Filippenko said.

“This is how isolated millisecond pulsars could form. They weren’t alone to begin with and were meant to be in a binary pair, but they gradually evaporated their partners, and now they are alone,” he said. -he declares.

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