Journal Article

The efficiency of gamma-ray emission from pulsars

Bronisław Rudak and Jarosław Dyks

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 295, issue 2, pages 337-343
Published in print April 1998 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online April 1998 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
The efficiency of gamma-ray emission from pulsars

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We present a modified scenario of gamma-ray emission from pulsars within the framework of polar cap models. Our model incorporates the possible acceleration of electron—positron pairs created in magnetospheres, and their subsequent contribution to the gamma-ray luminosity Lγ. It also reproduces the empirical trend in Lγ for seven pulsars detected with Compton Gamma-Ray Observatory (CGRO) experiments. At the same time it avoids basic difficulties faced by theoretical models when confronted with observational constraints.

We show that the classical and millisecond pulsars form two distinct branches in the LγLsd diagram (where Lsd is the spin-down luminosity). In particular, we explain why the millisecond pulsar J0437−4715 has not been detected with any of the CGRO instruments despite its very high position in the ranking list of spin-down fluxes (i.e. Lsd/D2, where D is a distance). The gamma-ray luminosity predicted for this particular object is about one order of magnitude below the upper limit set by EGRET.

Keywords: pulsars: general; gamma-rays: observations; gamma-rays: theory

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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