1E 1207.4-5209: The puzzling pulsar at the center of the supernova remnant PKS 1209-51/52

G. G. Pavlov, V. E. Zavlin, D. Sanwal, J. Trümper

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A second Chandra observation of 1E 1207.4-5209, the central source of the supernova remnant (SNR) PKS 1209-51/52, allowed us to confirm the previously detected period of 424 ms and, assuming a uniform spin-down, estimate the period derivative, Ṗ ∼ (0.7-3) × 10-14 s s -1. The corresponding characteristic age of the pulsar, P/2Ṗ ∼ 200-900 kyr, is much larger than the estimated age of the SNR, ∼ 7 kyr. The values of the spin-down luminosity, Ė ∼ (0.4-1.6) × 1034 ergs s-1, and conventional magnetic field, B ∼ (2-4) × 1012 G, are typical for a middle-aged radio pulsar, although no manifestations of pulsar activity have been observed. If 1E 1207.4-5209 is indeed the neutron star formed in the same supernova explosion that created PKS 1209-51/52, such a discrepancy in ages could be explained either by a long initial period, close to its current value, or, less likely, by a very large braking index of the pulsar. Alternatively, the pulsar could be a foreground object unrelated to the SNR, but the probability of such a coincidence is very low.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L95-L98
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2 II
StatePublished - Apr 20 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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