The Crab pulsar is a neutron star that is at the heart of the Crab Nebula. It is a relatively young pulsar, the Supernova was first observed on Earth by Chinese astronomers on July 4th, 1054 A.D. and was visible during the day for 23 days and at night for almost two years. There are no observations at that time by European astronomers.
The pulsar flashes in radio, x-ray and gamma wavelength at 30 times a second and its what lights up the Nebula. Britannica.
The original star before it went supernova is believed to have been a dwarf star of spectral types O or B (both of which are blue stars). The original star is believed to have been eight to twelve times the mass of our Sun and when it exploded, most of the mass was lost in the dust and clouds of the nebula. Solstation
The Crab Pulsar is slowing down at a rate of 38 nanoseconds per day. A nanosecond is 1/1,000,000,000 or a billionth of a second. Space
Crab Pulsar has alternative name(s) :- CM Taurus, PSR B0531+21.
More details on star alternative names can be found at Star Names .
The location of the star in the night sky is determined by the Right Ascension (R.A.) and Declination (Dec.), these are equivalent to the Longitude and Latitude on the Earth. The Right Ascension is how far expressed in time (hh:mm:ss) the star is along the celestial equator. If the R.A. is positive then its eastwards. The Declination is how far north or south the star is compared to the celestial equator and is expressed in degrees. For Crab Pulsar, the location is 05h 34m 31.97s and +22° 00` 52.1 .
All stars like planets orbit round a central spot, in the case of planets, its the central star such as the Sun. In the case of a star, its the galactic centre. The constellations that we see today will be different than they were 50,000 years ago or 50,000 years from now. Proper Motion details the movements of these stars and are measured in milliarcseconds. The star is moving 2.00 miliarcseconds/year towards the north and -14.70 miliarcseconds/year east if we saw them in the horizon. . When the value is negative then the star and the Sun are getting closer to one another, likewise, a positive number means that two stars are moving away. Its nothing to fear as the stars are so far apart, they won't collide in our life-time, if ever.
Crab Pulsar has a spectral type of P. The star has a B-V Colour Index of 0.5 which means the star's temperature has been calculated using information from Morgans @ Uni.edu at being 6,114 Kelvin.
Crab Pulsar Radius has been calculated as being 0.92 times bigger than the Sun.The Sun's radius is 695,800km, therefore the star's radius is an estimated 637,807.96.km. If you need the diameter of the star, you just need to multiple the radius by 2. The figure is derived at by using the formula from SDSS and has been known to produce widely incorrect figures.
Crab Pulsar has an apparent magnitude of 16.50 which is how bright we see the star from Earth. Apparent Magnitude is also known as Visual Magnitude. Using the supplied Parallax value, you would get an absolute magnitude of 4.79 Magnitude, whether it be apparent/visual or absolute magnitude is measured by a number, the smaller the number, the brighter the Star is. Our own Sun is the brightest star and therefore has the lowest of all magnitudes, -26.74. A faint star will have a high number.
The Parallax of the star is given as 0.46 which gives a calculated distance to Crab Pulsar of 7168.43 light years from the Earth or 2197.80 parsecs. It would take a spaceship travelling at the speed of light, 7168.43 years to get there. We don't have the technology or spaceship that can carry people over that distance yet.
The star is roughly 453,325,632.35 Astronomical Units from the Earth/Sun give or take a few. An Astronomical Unit is the distance between Earth and the Sun. The number of A.U. is the number of times that the star is from the Earth compared to the Sun.
|Primary / Proper / Traditional Name||Crab Pulsar|
|Alternative Names||CM Taurus, PSR B0531+21|
|Constellation's Main Star||No|
|Multiple Star System||No / Unknown|
|Visual / Apparent Magnitude||16.50|
|Naked Eye Visible||Requires 8m Telescope - Magnitudes|
|Right Ascension (R.A.)||05h 34m 31.97s|
|Declination (Dec.)||+22° 00` 52.1|
|Distance from Earth||0.46 Parallax (milliarcseconds)|
|7168.43 Light Years|
|453,325,632.35 Astronomical Units|
|Proper Motion Dec.||2.00 milliarcseconds/year|
|Proper Motion RA.||-14.70 milliarcseconds/year|
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