ph2a_quiz3

ph2a_quiz3 - Ph002a, Fall 2008 Quiz 3 Due: 11 November 2008...

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Ph002a, Fall 2008 Quiz 3 Due: 11 November 2008 Several Nobel prizes in physics have been given out for discoveries made with pulsars. A neutron star is an extremely dense remnant of a star, after that star has burned up all the nuclear fuel that makes it shine. It has a mass comparable to the mass of the Sun, but occupies a space about the size of Pasadena. A pulsar is a rapidly spinning neutron star; they may spin around up to 1000 times per second. Pulsars emit extremely short bursts of radiation at regular intervals, every time they spin around. We see these as periodic radio signals, with a period equal to the spin period of the pulsar. Consider now a single burst of radio emission from a pulsar at a distance D =3 × 10 20 m away from us. The radio signal from the pulsar has to propagate through interstellar space before reaching us. That Interstellar space is Flled with a plasma, a gas of ionized atoms, with an electron density n e =2 × 10 - 8 m - 3 . As you know, electromagnetic waves propagate through a vacuum at the
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ph2a_quiz3 - Ph002a, Fall 2008 Quiz 3 Due: 11 November 2008...

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