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Record Details

Record 23 of 8666
Plasma physics of accreting neutron stars
Author and Affiliation:
Ghosh, Pranab(NASA, Washington, DC, United States)
Lamb, Frederick K.(Illinois Univ., Urbana, United States)
Abstract: Plasma concepts and phenomena that are needed to understand X- and gamma-ray sources are discussed. The capture of material from the wind or from the atmosphere or envelope of a binary companion star is described and the resulting types of accretion flows discussed. The reasons for the formation of a magnetosphere around the neutron star are explained. The qualitative features of the magnetospheres of accreting neutron stars are then described and compared with the qualitative features of the geomagnetosphere. The conditions for stable flow and for angular and linear momentum conservation are explained in the context of accretion by magnetic neutron stars and applied to obtain rough estimates of the scale of the magnetosphere. Accretion from Keplerian disks is then considered in some detail. The radial structure of geometrically thin disk flows, the interaction of disk flows with the neutron star magnetosphere, and models of steady accretion from Keplerian disks are described. Accretion torques and the resulting changes in the spin frequencies of rotating neutron stars are considered. The predicted behavior is then compared with observations of accretion-powered pulsars. Magnetospheric processes that may accelerate particles to very high energies, producing GeV and, perhaps, TeV gamma-rays are discussed. Finally, the mechanisms that decelerate and eventually stop accreting plasma at the surfaces of strongly magnetic neutron stars are described.
Publication Date: Jan 01, 1991
Document ID:
19930067972
(Acquired Dec 28, 1995)
Accession Number: 93A51969
Subject Category: ASTROPHYSICS
Document Type: Conference Proceedings
Publication Information: : Problems in the ae; (SEE observati)
Publisher Information: Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, Netherlands, Netherlands
Contract/Grant/Task Num: NSF PHY-86-00377; NAGW-1583
Financial Sponsor: NASA; United States
Organization Source: NASA; Washington, DC, United States
Description: 82p; In English
Distribution Limits: Unclassified; Publicly available; Unlimited
Rights: Copyright
NASA Terms: MAGNETOHYDRODYNAMICS; NEUTRON STARS; PLASMA PHYSICS; STELLAR MAGNETOSPHERES; STELLAR MASS ACCRETION; BINARY STARS; GAMMA RAYS; STELLAR COMPOSITION; STELLAR MASS; X RAY STARS
Imprint And Other Notes: In: Neutron stars: Theory and observation, p. 363-444.
Availability Source: Other Sources
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