AAS 201st Meeting, January, 2003
Session 139. Pulsars: Blowing in the Wind
Oral, Thursday, January 9, 2003, 2:00-3:30pm, 618-619

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[139.04] The X-ray Properties of 3C 58 and its Associated Neutron Star

P.O. Slane (Harvard-Smithsonian CfA), D.J. Helfand (Columbia), S.S. Murray (Harvard-Smithsonian CfA), E.V. Gotthelf (Columbia)

As the presumed remnant of SN 1181, 3C 58 houses one of the youngest known neutron stars in the Galaxy. The properties of this recently-identified pulsar and its associated wind nebula differ considerably from those of the Crab, and may well offer a more typical example of the endpoint of massive star collapse. But while the overall luminosity is much lower than that for the Crab, and the size is much larger, there are several morphological similarities. Our high resolution X-ray studies reveal structures in the inner nebula of 3C 58 that may be associated with the pulsar wind termination shock, a jet that may be aligned with the rotation axis, and other regions of enhanced emission in the pulsar wind. The spectral variations in the PWN are consistent with the expected evolution of the postshock flow, and the location of the termination shock indicates a particle-dominated wind. In addition, limits on the neutron star surface temperature fall below standard cooling models, indicating that some more rapid neutrino cooling process is required. We report on these results as well as on a sensitive search for a shell of swept-up material bounding the PWN.

This work was supported in part by NASA Contract NAS8-39073 and Grant GO0-1117A.

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