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Neutron Star or a Pulsar - what decides

  1. Dec 15, 2011 #1
    After a supernova what compels the left over core to be either a neutron star or a pulsar?
    is it decided before or after explosion?
    any thoughts would be appreciated.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 15, 2011 #2
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2011
  4. Dec 18, 2011 #3
    Whenever a type 1A supernovae releases it's remnants, if the left over rigid core doesn't exceed TOV limit then in that case a neutron star is formed. I suppose the difference between a neutron star and a pulsar would be on the scale of sizes of the magnetic field as hinted by jimmy's post.
  5. Dec 18, 2011 #4


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    A pulsar IS a neutron star, usually very young, energetic, and spinning like a top. Its immense magnetic field is what causes the pulses.
  6. Dec 19, 2011 #5
    Ah, I was under the impression that pulsars are old, neutron stars with high angular momentum. Thanks for your correction.
  7. Jan 4, 2012 #6
    Pulsars accrete surrounding matter onto their surface. The strong magnetic field of the neutron star funnels the matter onto the poles of the star, and bright hotspots are created on the surface. If a neutron star has nothing to accrete, there are no hotspots, and there is no pulsar.
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