Black Widow Pulsar 3000 Light Years Earth Heaviest Neutron Star
A ‘black widow’ pulsar has been discovered 3,000 light-years from Earth, and this dense, collapsed star spinning at 707 times per second just might be the heaviest neutron star yet. It’s spinning so fast that the pulsar has already shredded and devoured nearly the entire mass of its stellar companion, resulting in its growth to become the heaviest neutron stars observed to date in the Milky Way galaxy.



The star, classified as PSR J0952-0607, was weighed by astronomers using the hyper sensitive Keck telescope at the W. M. Keck Observatory on Maunakea in Hawaii. This was accomplished by utilizing the observatory’s Low Resolution Imaging Spectrometer to record visible light from the shredded companion star, which glowed due to its high heat. Now mountains on a neutron star are an entirely different story, as they are believed to only stand millimeters tall.

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Celestron - 70mm Travel Scope - Portable Refractor Telescope - Fully-Coated Glass Optics - Ideal Telescope for Beginners - BONUS Astronomy Software Package
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Celestron - 70mm Travel Scope - Portable Refractor Telescope - Fully-Coated Glass Optics - Ideal Telescope for Beginners - BONUS Astronomy Software Package
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We know roughly how matter behaves at nuclear densities, like in the nucleus of a uranium atom. A neutron star is like one giant nucleus, but when you have one-and-a-half solar masses of this stuff, which is about 500,000 Earth masses of nuclei all clinging together, it’s not at all clear how they will behave,” said Alex Filippenko, Distinguished Professor of Astronomy at the University of California, Berkeley.