Properties of X-ray radiation emitted from the polar caps of a radio pulsar depend not only on the cap temperature, size, and position, but also on the surface chemical composition, magnetic field, and neutron star's mass and radius. Fitting the spectra and the light curves with neutron star atmosphere models enables one to infer these parameters. As an example, we present here results obtained from the analysis of the pulsed X-ray radiation of a nearby millisecond pulsar, J0437-4715. In particular, we show that stringent constraints on the mass-to-radius ratio can be obtained if orientations of the magnetic and rotation axes are known, e.g., from the radio polarization data.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science