X-ray spectra of several pulsars

X-ray spectra of remnants with neutron stars and synchrotron nebulae obtained with the Einstein Solid State Spectrometer (SSS). Spectra such as these ones, exhibiting no spectral lines, are characteristic of synchrotron emission, or continuum radiation emitted by high energy electrons moving through a magnetic field. The radiation is strong at high energies, so the spectra are 'hard.' Note the different shape compared to thermal spectra. This illustrates the value of spectral measurements in determining what mechanism is responsible for the radiation observed.

Courtesy of A. Szymkowiak (GSFC). Reproduced from figure 3-20 of Charles and Seward.

X-ray spectra of pulsars

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Last modified: Thursday, 26-Jun-2003 13:48:44 EDT