Discovery of two millisecond pulsars in Fermi sources with the Nançay Radio Telescope

I. Cognard, L. Guillemot, T. J. Johnson, D. A. Smith, C. Venter, A. K. Harding, M. T. Wolff, C. C. Cheung, D. Donato, A. A. Abdo, J. Ballet, F. Camilo, G. Desvignes, D. Dumora, E. C. Ferrara, P. C C Freire, J. E. Grove, S. Johnston, M. Keith, M. KramerA. G. Lyne, P. F. Michelson, D. Parent, S. M. Ransom, P. S. Ray, R. W. Romani, P. M Saz Parkinson, B. W. Stappers, G. Theureau, D. J. Thompson, P. Weltevrede, K. S. Wood

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Abstract

    We report the discovery of two millisecond pulsars in a search for radio pulsations at the positions of Fermi-Large Area Telescope sources with no previously known counterparts, using the Nançay Radio Telescope. The two millisecond pulsars, PSRs J2017+0603 and J2302+4442, have rotational periods of 2.896 and 5.192ms and are both in binary systems with low-eccentricity orbits and orbital periods of 2.2 and 125.9 days, respectively, suggesting long recycling processes. Gamma-ray pulsations were subsequently detected for both objects, indicating that they power the associated Fermi sources in which they were found. The gamma-ray light curves and spectral properties are similar to those of previously detected gamma-ray millisecond pulsars. Detailed modeling of the observed radio and gamma-ray light curves shows that the gamma-ray emission seems to originate at high altitudes in their magnetospheres. Additionally, X-ray observations revealed the presence of an X-ray source at the position of PSRJ2302+4442, consistent with thermal emission from a neutron star. These discoveries along with the numerous detections of radio-loud millisecond pulsars in gamma rays suggest that many Fermi sources with no known counterpart could be unknown millisecond pulsars. © 2011. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number47
    JournalAstrophysical Journal
    Volume732
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2011

    Keywords

    • gamma rays: general
    • pulsars: general
    • pulsars: individual (J2017+0603, J2302+4442)

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