Clocks in the Sky
The Story of Pulsars
Pulsars are the collapsed cores of once massive stars that ended their lives as supernova explosions.
Now existing as neutron stars, their rotation rates can reach incredible speeds, up to hundreds of times per second.
Clocks in the Sky: The Story of Pulsars explores the events which led to their discovery,
and describes contemporary research into pulsar astronomy. It gives a vivid picture of the
combination of new technology, human doggedness and good fortune which eventually led to
the original positive identification of pulsars. It describes the explosion of research
into this area of astronomy and astrophysics, and discoveries such as millisecond pulsars,
double pulsars and the first extrasolar planets. Finally, it looks at the possiblity that
the real discoveries are yet to be made including, perhaps, the detection of the hypothetical pulsar
black hole binary system by the proposed Square Kilometre Array, the largest single radio telescope in the world.
Table of Contents
List of Illustrations
List of Abbreviations
- Life and Death Among the Stars
- A New Window
- What Makes Pulsars Tick?
- The Crab
- Optical Pulsars
- The Searchers
- Two by Two
- Faster and Stronger
- Globular Pulsars
- Pulsar Planets
- Seeing Double
- Of Multibeams and RRATs
- The Future
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