Questions tagged [neutron-star]

Questions regarding a degenerate star that is mainly composed of neutrons.

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80
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2answers
11k views

Why is the discovery of merging neutron stars important?

I'm fairly certain people here will have heard about it, already, but apparently, two supernova leftovers clashed some 130 million years ago and some billion billion kilometres away ... What I haven'...
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2answers
38k views

How does neutron star collapse into black hole?

We know the spectacular explosions of supernovae, that when heavy enough, form black holes. The explosive emission of both electromagnetic radiation and massive amounts of matter is clearly observable ...
29
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1answer
3k views

Are binary neutron star mergers needed to explain the abundance of gold?

The NPR News item Astronomers Strike Gravitational Gold In Colliding Neutron Stars mentions and quotes "Daniel Kasen, a theoretical astrophysicist at the University of California, Berkeley:" He ...
25
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2answers
9k views

Which atom is a Neutron star made of?

I understood that everything was made of Atoms. An atom is the smallest constituent unit of ordinary matter that has the properties of a chemical element. Every solid, liquid, gas, and plasma ...
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5answers
4k views

How far away are the events that caused the gravitational waves that have been detected?

A certain number of gravitational wave events have been detected. Is it possible to know how far away the mergers that caused those gravitational wave events are?
19
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1answer
262 views

Can we detect pulsars that aren't “pointed” towards us?

A pulsar is a highly magnetized rotating neutron star that emits beams of radiation through its magnetic poles, in the direction of the Earth. This makes it seem to pulse, as seen from Earth. There ...
17
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4answers
2k views

Is it possible to break apart a neutron star?

I was inspired by this question on Physics, as well as this question right here on Astronomy. Neutron stars are tightly bound together as neutron degenerate matter. They're very massive and have a ...
16
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3answers
2k views

Shape of neutron stars

I've heard that the more an object spins, the less of a true sphere it is. Using this logic most of neutron stars would be far from spherical,in general what shape are most neutron stars?
15
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1answer
390 views

“Who saw” the binary neutron star merger first? What was the sequence of events? (GRB/GW170817)

I'm trying to read Multi-messenger Observations of a Binary Neutron Star Merger the "cast of thousands" OPEN Access ApJ letter 848:L12 (59pp), 2017 October 20 https://doi.org/10.3847/2041-8213/aa91c9 ...
14
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2answers
6k views

What causes a neutron star to become a pulsar?

Leading on from this pulsar question, what criteria/processes make neutron stars become pulsars, do all neutron stars become pulsars?
13
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2answers
2k views

Do all neutron stars spin?

I know that some of them are pulsars and pulsars spin very fast, but do all of the neutron stars spin? I would think that they would because of conservation of momentum, but I'm really just not sure.
13
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1answer
1k views

How can neutron stars have gaseous atmospheres?

Neutron stars can have small atmospheres. However, they also have extremely strong gravitationally pulls. Shouldn't the all the gas molecules be drawn to the star's surface, and become solids under ...
12
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4answers
1k views

Is it possible neutron stars are actual elements?

As you go up the periodic table (more protons), the ratio of neutrons to protons steadily increases as well. Are we sure there are absolutely no protons and electrons in a neutron star, or could there ...
11
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4answers
3k views

Why don't Neutron Stars form event horizon?

Trying to compare density of Black Holes and Neutron Stars I came up with the following: A typical neutron star has a mass between about 1.4 and 3.2 solar masses1[3] (see Chandrasekhar Limit), with ...
11
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1answer
519 views

How far away is the nearest compact star remnant likely to be?

Neutron stars and black holes are hard to detect when they are solitary, and there seems to be big uncertainties about how common they are. White dwarfs are much easier to detect and the nearest one ...
11
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1answer
939 views

Do neutron stars shine?

Ignore pulsars and the like, just a neutron star in empty space – does it emit light and neutrinos?
11
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1answer
604 views

Is starquake unique to neutron star?

I read from somewhere that astronomer use X-ray to observe the "shaking" not to be confused with wobbling of a distant neutron star, I think it is similar to what geologist using microphone to ...
11
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1answer
376 views

How do we know how fast the surface of a neutron star is rotating?

I understand that we can count pulses in time, but how do we know that the magnetosphere is rotating along with the surface of a neutron star? Can we measure the rotation of a neutron star in any ...
10
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2answers
462 views

Would a tablespoon of a neutron star remain intact?

I've heard people say that a tablespoon of neutron star would weigh over a billion tons. If we ever could take a tablespoon of one would it still remain intact with the same density?
10
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1answer
433 views

What lies at the center of a neutron star if any?

What does the current theory tell us about what is going on at the core of a neutron star, I'm expecting a black hole hopefully I won't be disappointed!
10
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1answer
813 views

No hair and neutron stars

I know black holes can be described by only a few parameters. Given the extreme conditions within a neutron star, how much hair does it have, ie. how much of the original star parameters and ...
10
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2answers
2k views

What would happen if a body were to fall into a neutron star?

We know neutron stars as a very massive object with extremely strong gravitational forces that composes mostly of neutrons. I couldn't help but wonder, what would happen if an object fell into a ...
10
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1answer
503 views

Origin of the magnetic field of neutron stars

It seems a little counter intuitive that neutron stars possess such strong magnetic fields. Its electric charge is presumably zero, so however fast it spins, it shouldn't generate any magnetic field. ...
9
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2answers
949 views

What is the final destination of a neutron star?

As I understand, neutron stars are born as extremely bright, extremely fast spinning cores of stars dying in a supernova. However, several websites tell me that within a course of a few years, the ...
9
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2answers
13k views

What is the fastest spinning rotation of a Neutron star?

What is the fastest spinning rotation of a Neutron star? I have heard that Neutron stars have a specially fast spinning rotation. What is the fastest?
9
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1answer
7k views

Position of Neutron stars in H R diagram

Why is that Neutron Stars are never depicted in an H R diagram? They can be placed in the bottom right corner but you will never find any diagram in literature showing neutron stars.
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3answers
1k views

Is there a possibility that a white dwarf can turn into a neutron star or a black hole?

I know that a white dwarf is mainly balanced by electron degeneracy pressure and that if it gains more than 1.4 solar masses from any source (such as a companion star or a collision), it explodes as a ...
8
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1answer
264 views

Inner Workings of Neutron Stars

What are future steps that can be taken in order to learn more about the inner workings of a Neutron Star such as "nuclear pasta" and the materials in the inner core?
8
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1answer
106 views

How can I hear (or at least detect) a pulsar at home?

Scott Manley's video Using Relativistic Raytracing &X-Rays To See Detail on Surface Of Neutron Star talks about X-ray measurements using the NICER X-ray telescope attached to the International ...
7
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1answer
117 views

Energy Source for Gamma Rays from Merging Neutron Stars

When the two neutron stars merged in the latest event, large amounts of gamma rays were emitted. Given that their deorbitting is a result of gravitational wave production, where does the energy for ...
6
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2answers
528 views

Magnetars and the Dynamo Effect

How do magnetars create/sustain such strong magnetic fields? If a dynamo effect did create a magnetar, then what creates the magnetic field? The dynamo effect requires an electrically conductive fluid,...
6
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1answer
250 views

How does a neutron star emitting magnetic-dipole radiation lose angular momentum?

Is the ultimate reason that the neutron star loses angular momentum that the magnetic-dipole radiation is not spherically symmetric and photons have momentum? Just for the loss of angular momentum, ...
6
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4answers
869 views

Why aren't neutron stars full of dark matter?

Dark matter interacts with the gravitational force right? Well, unlike black holes, neutron stars are actually visible, and they're an enormous gravitational sink, so dark matter should collect to ...
6
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2answers
191 views

How can we know the nature of the companion in a neutron star binary?

The companion of a neutron star could be a main sequence star, white dwarf, neutron star or black hole. We detected a pulsar-pulsar binary several decades ago. But if one of the pulsar does not ...
5
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2answers
168 views

A neutron star without a flat surface and an atmosphere?

In the Kurzgesagt video Atoms As Big As Mountains — Neutron Stars Explained they state that neutron stars have an atmosphere that reaches about 10 centimeters above the surface. How is this possible?...
5
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2answers
4k views

What happens over time as a neutron star cools?

My understanding of a white dwarf star is that, although it hasn't happened yet due to the age of the universe, eventually as it loses energy due to radiating heat and tidal forces, it will cool to ...
5
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4answers
1k views

How could a neutron star collapse into a black hole?

White dwarfs usually do not collapse, as they have electron degeneracy pressure due to the Pauli exclusion principle. However, if one accretes mass beyond the Chandrasekhar limit, it is energetically ...
5
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3answers
418 views

Why do neutron stars collide instead of just revolving around each other like planets revolve around the Sun?

We know about events like two neutron star colliding and resulting in a black hole, also collision of black holes, and collision of galaxies. But we never see a satellite such as a moon colliding with ...
5
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1answer
82 views

Is there evidence of super-heavy elements in the x-ray and gamma-ray spectrums of neutron stars?

It occurs to me, that between the surface and interior of neutron stars, gravitational pressure might produce super-heavy elements and that signatures of such elements might be detectable in the star'...
5
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1answer
252 views

Roche Zone of a black hole vs Roche Zone of Neutron Star

Suppose a very unusually small back hole with the mass of about, lets say, 1.5 solar masses(hawking radiation should destroy a lot of mass let's assume). It thus would have a Roche limit smaller than ...
5
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2answers
762 views

Why does the Chandrasekhar limit affect white dwarfs differently?

The Chandrasekhar limit is the maximum mass of a stable white dwarf star. Beyond this, a carbon-oxygen white dwarf will typically explode in a type 1a supernova, due to the nuclear reactions at those ...
5
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1answer
596 views

Is radiation from neutron stars delayed by time dilation?

I understand a neutron star to be the densest stuff that can exist without becoming a black hole, the densest thing which directly gives off radiation we can detect. At the event horizon of a black ...
5
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2answers
343 views

Why do we think that there is no two-solar-mass black hole?

We think that the mass boundary between neutron stars and stellar mass black holes is around three solar masses. The maximum mass of the neutron stars now is two solar masses and we may find a 2.6 ...
5
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1answer
156 views

Is there a significant population of neutron stars outside the galactic plane?

Pulsar kicks originating from supernovae can impart neutron stars with speeds of 100-500 km/s, often at or close to the escape velocity of the Milky Way. Even if a pulsar fails to escape the galaxy, ...
4
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2answers
642 views

What would happen if we put a small part of White Dwarf or Neutron Star on Earth?

I would know what would happen if we put a small part (let me assume 1 cm$^3$) of White Dwarf or Neutron Star on ...
4
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2answers
298 views

Why is neutron star a star?

I am wondering since neutron star is smaller than the average main-sequence stars and it doesn't produce energy via fusion so why do we still call it a star?
4
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1answer
675 views

Stellar mass limits for Neutron Star and Black Holes

Don't hate on me if I am asking a very basic and straightforward thing. I have a few questions about black holes and neutron stars. What is the mass range (in terms of solar masses) for a main ...
4
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2answers
1k views

What happens when star spins too fast?

Some stars such as a neutron star can spin very fast around 600 times a second, wouldn't the star be ripped apart? Although the gravitational pull is very strong but gravity is the weakest of all ...
4
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2answers
128 views

Neutron star size in different reference frames

What is the estimated size of neutron stars observed in their reference frame and in our reference frame? That is, how bent is space-time around neutron stars?
4
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2answers
156 views

Did the scientists really observed gold and platinum being created from kilonova?

I read that after LIGO and Virgo interferometers detected gravitational waves signal from a kilonova, many ground based telescopes quickly turns their mirrors towards the spot and "sees" gold and ...