Pulsars from Starbursts at the Galactic Center

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Session 66 -- Galactic Center
Oral presentation, Tuesday, 10, 1995, 2:00pm - 3:30pm

[66.04] Pulsars from Starbursts at the Galactic Center

Dieter Hartmann (Clemson University)

It has been suggested that the Galactic center region experienced a giant explosion about 1.5\ 10$^7$ yrs ago, releasing in excess of $\sim$ 10$^{56}$ ergs. This energy could be due to a starburst involving more than $\sim$ 10$^5$ supernovae, or it might be due to a massive black hole at the Galactic center. The former scenario can in principle be tested through a search for either the resulting $\gamma$-ray lines from the production of radioactive species or a search for the radio pulsars that were injected into the Galactic gravitational field during the starburst. Based on the recently determined high space velocities of pulsars, in many cases exceeding the Galactic escape velocity, neutron stars could be a useful tracer of such starburst episodes. We present simulations of pulsar bursts associated with explosive star bursts in or near the Galactic center and argue that a dedicated radio search for these pulsars might be able to identify the signature of a star burst. Detection of pulsars from a brief and recent injection period would also provide a valuable tool for studies of the gravitational potential in the Galactic bulge region. This part of the Galactic mass model is poorly understood, but has significant implications for studies of the Galactic center bar as well as observations of gravitational microlensing of stars in the bulge.

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