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Proper Motion Measurements of Radio-Quiet Pulsars Using 𝛾-ray Single Photons

Presentation #206.05 in the session Stellar & Compact Objects II.

Published onJul 01, 2023
Proper Motion Measurements of Radio-Quiet Pulsars Using 𝛾-ray Single Photons

Measuring the proper motion of young pulsars informs us about the birth mechanisms and locations of neutron stars, and measuring proper motions is possible through radio- and 𝛾-ray pulsar timing. 𝛾-ray pulsar timing is generally more difficult due to the low number of collected 𝛾-ray photons and confusion with background sources. For comparison, creating a good signal-to-noise ratio radio pulse time-of-arrival (TOA) requires averaging over 102 to 103 pulses (slow pulsars) or 104 to 106 pulses (millisecond pulsars). This can typically be done within an hour of radio observations. In contrast, the average 𝛾-ray photon rate for pulsars with Fermi-LAT is on the order of 1 photon per day. Given this low count rate, it is advantageous to extract the maximum amount of information from them. We do this by using Bayesian analysis and MCMC techniques with PINT to time 𝛾-ray pulsars using single photons. This technique allows us to take advantage of the long, 14-yr Fermi-LAT data set. I will present our selection criteria, the techniques we used to measure the proper motions of young radio-quiet 𝛾-ray pulsars as well as preliminary results and comparisons.

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