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Title: Pulsar timing for the Fermi gamma-ray space telescope

Abstract

Here, we describe a comprehensive pulsar monitoring campaign for the Large Area Telescope (LAT) on the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope (formerly GLAST). The detection and study of pulsars in gamma rays give insights into the populations of neutron stars and supernova rates in the Galaxy, into particle acceleration mechanisms in neutron star magnetospheres, and into the “engines” driving pulsar wind nebulae. LAT's unprecedented sensitivity between 20 MeV and 300 GeV together with its 2.4 sr field-of-view makes detection of many gamma-ray pulsars likely, justifying the monitoring of over two hundred pulsars with large spin-down powers. To search for gamma-ray pulsations from most of these pulsars requires a set of phase-connected timing solutions spanning a year or more to properly align the sparse photon arrival times. We describe the choice of pulsars and the instruments involved in the campaign. Attention is paid to verifications of the LAT pulsar software, using for example giant radio pulses from the Crab and from PSR B1937+21 recorded at Nançay, and using X-ray data on PSR J0218+4232 from XMM-Newton. We demonstrate accuracy of the pulsar phase calculations at the microsecond level.

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [2];  [3];  [1];  [4];  [5];  [2];  [6];  [7];  [7];  [8];  [9];  [8];  [9];  [7];  [6];  [10];  [9];  [11] more »;  [12];  [13];  [9];  [14];  [6];  [15];  [16];  [7] « less
  1. Univ. of Bordeaux, Gradignan (France). Centre d'etudes nucleaires de Bordeaux Gradignan, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Inst. National de Physique Nucleaire et de Physique des Particules (CNRS/IN2P3)
  2. Columbia Univ., New York, NY (United States). Columbia Astrophysics Lab.
  3. Univ. of Orleans (France). Lab. of Physics and Chemistry of Environment and Space; Paris Observatory (France). Nancay radio telescope
  4. Univ. of Manchester, Macclesfield (United Kingdom). Jodrell Bank Observatory
  5. Arecibo Observatory (Puerto Rico)
  6. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), Greenbelt, MD (United States)
  7. Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Epping, NSW (Australia). Australia Telescope National Facility
  8. McGill Univ., Montreal, QC (Canada)
  9. Univ. of Manchester, Macclesfield (United Kingdom). Jodrell Bank Observatory
  10. West Virginia Univ., Morgantown, WV (United States). Dept. of Physics
  11. National Radio Astronomy Observatory, Charlottesville, VA (United States)
  12. Eureka Scientific, Inc., Oakland, CA (United States)
  13. Stanford Univ., CA (United States). Dept. of Physics
  14. Univ. of Orleans (France). Lab. of Physics and Chemistry of Environment and Space; Paris Observatory (France). Nancay radio telescope; Paris Observatory (France). GEPI
  15. Univ. of California, Santa Cruz, CA (United States). Dept. of Astronomy & Astrophysics
  16. National Astronomical Observatories-CAS, Urumqi (China)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
SLAC National Accelerator Lab., Menlo Park, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1357321
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC02-76SF00515
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Astronomy and Astrophysics
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 492; Journal Issue: 3; Journal ID: ISSN 0004-6361
Publisher:
EDP Sciences
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTRONOMY AND ASTROPHYSICS; pulsars; Gamma-rays; Ephemerides

Citation Formats

Smith, D. A., Guillemot, L., Camilo, F., Cognard, I., Dumora, D., Espinoza, C., Freire, P. C. C., Gotthelf, E. V., Harding, A. K., Hobbs, G. B., Johnston, S., Kaspi, V. M., Kramer, M., Livingstone, M. A., Lyne, A. G., Manchester, R. N., Marshall, F. E., McLaughlin, M. A., Noutsos, A., Ransom, S. M., Roberts, M. S. E., Romani, R. W., Stappers, B. W., Theureau, G., Thompson, D. J., Thorsett, S. E., Wang, N., and Weltevrede, P. Pulsar timing for the Fermi gamma-ray space telescope. United States: N. p., 2008. Web. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:200810285.
Smith, D. A., Guillemot, L., Camilo, F., Cognard, I., Dumora, D., Espinoza, C., Freire, P. C. C., Gotthelf, E. V., Harding, A. K., Hobbs, G. B., Johnston, S., Kaspi, V. M., Kramer, M., Livingstone, M. A., Lyne, A. G., Manchester, R. N., Marshall, F. E., McLaughlin, M. A., Noutsos, A., Ransom, S. M., Roberts, M. S. E., Romani, R. W., Stappers, B. W., Theureau, G., Thompson, D. J., Thorsett, S. E., Wang, N., & Weltevrede, P. Pulsar timing for the Fermi gamma-ray space telescope. United States. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:200810285.
Smith, D. A., Guillemot, L., Camilo, F., Cognard, I., Dumora, D., Espinoza, C., Freire, P. C. C., Gotthelf, E. V., Harding, A. K., Hobbs, G. B., Johnston, S., Kaspi, V. M., Kramer, M., Livingstone, M. A., Lyne, A. G., Manchester, R. N., Marshall, F. E., McLaughlin, M. A., Noutsos, A., Ransom, S. M., Roberts, M. S. E., Romani, R. W., Stappers, B. W., Theureau, G., Thompson, D. J., Thorsett, S. E., Wang, N., and Weltevrede, P. Mon . "Pulsar timing for the Fermi gamma-ray space telescope". United States. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:200810285. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1357321.
@article{osti_1357321,
title = {Pulsar timing for the Fermi gamma-ray space telescope},
author = {Smith, D. A. and Guillemot, L. and Camilo, F. and Cognard, I. and Dumora, D. and Espinoza, C. and Freire, P. C. C. and Gotthelf, E. V. and Harding, A. K. and Hobbs, G. B. and Johnston, S. and Kaspi, V. M. and Kramer, M. and Livingstone, M. A. and Lyne, A. G. and Manchester, R. N. and Marshall, F. E. and McLaughlin, M. A. and Noutsos, A. and Ransom, S. M. and Roberts, M. S. E. and Romani, R. W. and Stappers, B. W. and Theureau, G. and Thompson, D. J. and Thorsett, S. E. and Wang, N. and Weltevrede, P.},
abstractNote = {Here, we describe a comprehensive pulsar monitoring campaign for the Large Area Telescope (LAT) on the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope (formerly GLAST). The detection and study of pulsars in gamma rays give insights into the populations of neutron stars and supernova rates in the Galaxy, into particle acceleration mechanisms in neutron star magnetospheres, and into the “engines” driving pulsar wind nebulae. LAT's unprecedented sensitivity between 20 MeV and 300 GeV together with its 2.4 sr field-of-view makes detection of many gamma-ray pulsars likely, justifying the monitoring of over two hundred pulsars with large spin-down powers. To search for gamma-ray pulsations from most of these pulsars requires a set of phase-connected timing solutions spanning a year or more to properly align the sparse photon arrival times. We describe the choice of pulsars and the instruments involved in the campaign. Attention is paid to verifications of the LAT pulsar software, using for example giant radio pulses from the Crab and from PSR B1937+21 recorded at Nançay, and using X-ray data on PSR J0218+4232 from XMM-Newton. We demonstrate accuracy of the pulsar phase calculations at the microsecond level.},
doi = {10.1051/0004-6361:200810285},
journal = {Astronomy and Astrophysics},
number = 3,
volume = 492,
place = {United States},
year = {2008},
month = {10}
}

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