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A Newly Identified Polar Wind Nebula Spotted In Space

First Posted: Jun 20, 2017 04:32 AM EDT
Polar Wind Nebula
Astronomers discover bubble-like structure associated with the pulsar PSR J1015−5719. (Image for representation only.)
(Photo : Wall Street Journal/YouTube screenshot)

The scientists have discovered a synchrotron nebula that is associated with PSR J1015-5719, which is an energetic pulsar. The newly discovered nebula is classified as a polar wind nebula and named as G283.1-0.59.

The findings of the discovery were printed on arXiv.org for publication in The Astrophysical Journal. The work was led by the researchers from the University of Hong Kong. This polar wind nebula was detected using the Molonglo Observatory Synthesis Telescope during the radio observation, according to Labroots.

The scientists led by astronomers C.-Y. Ng stated that the pulsar PSR J1015-5719 is embedded in the head of the nebula G283.1-0.59 with fan-shaped diffuse emission. It is attached to a round bubble of about 20 inches radius and a collimated tail extending over 1 inch.

The study also indicates that the newly discovered nebula could be likely a bow shock pulsar wind nebula (PWN). This type of nebula is characterized by broadband synchrotron radiation from radio to X-ray bands when they are developed because of the interaction of pulsar wind with the ambient medium. Its head is like the shape of a classical bow shock.

The team of astronomers also discovered that it has a projected stand-off distance of about 20 inches. With this, the team argues that the morphology of the new nebula is like that of other PWNe.

The scientists stated that this new nebula could be identified as a new bow-shock PWN associated with J1015-5719 pulsar based on its peculiar properties. They concluded that G28.1-0.59 is a unique example of a slow-moving bow shock PWN, in which the pulsar rotate axis is not aligned with the proper motion direction, according to Phys.org.

Meanwhile, a pulsar such as the PSR J1015-5719 is a highly magnetized and rotating neutron star or white dwarf. It discharges a beam of electromagnetic radiation. These neutron stars are very compact and short rotational periods.

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