PSR B0943+10

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PSR B0943+10
Observation data
Epoch J2000.0      Equinox J2000.0
Constellation Leo
Right ascension  09h 46m 7.31s[1]
Declination +09° 51′ 57.3″[1]
Distance630 ± 100[2] pc
Spectral type Neutron star
Variable type Pulsar
Luminosity1.31×10−5[2] L
Temperature3.1×106[a][2] K
Rotation1.1 s[2]
Age5 million[b][2] years
Database references

PSR B0943+10 is a pulsar 2,000 light years from Earth[2] in the direction of the constellation of Leo.[3] It was discovered at Pushchino in December 1968, original designation of this pulsar was PP 0943,[1] it became the first pulsar, discovered by Soviet astronomers.[4][5]


The pulsar is estimated to be 5 million years old, which is relatively old for a pulsar.[6] It has a rotational period of 1.1 seconds and emits both radio waves and X-rays.[7] Ongoing research at the University of Vermont discovered that the pulsar was found to flip on a roughly a few hours timescale between a radio bright mode with highly organized pulsations and a quieter mode with rather chaotic temporal structure.[8][9]

Moreover, the observations of the pulsar performed simultaneously with the European Space Agency's XMM-Newton X-ray observatory and ground-based radio telescopes revealed that it exhibits variations in its X-ray emission that mimic in reverse the changes seen in radio waves – the pulsar has a weaker non-pulsing X-ray luminosity during the radio bright mode and is actually brighter during the radio quiet mode emitting distinct X-ray pulses.[9] Such changes can only be explained if the pulsar's magnetosphere (which may extend up to 52,000 km from the surface) quickly switches between two extreme states.[6] The change happens on a few seconds timescale, far faster than most pulsars. Despite being one of the first pulsars discovered the mechanism for its unusual behavior is unknown.[8]

A research group from Peking University published a paper suggesting that the pulsar may actually be a low-mass quark star.[10]

Planetary system[edit]

In May 2014 two gas giants were found orbiting PSR B0943+10.[11][12][13]

The PSR B0943+10 planetary system
(in order from star)
Mass Semimajor axis
Orbital period
Eccentricity Inclination Radius
b 2.8 MJ 1.8 730
c 2.6 MJ 2.9 1460


  1. ^ Blackbody temperature of a small emitting area at the poles
  2. ^ Characteristic age


  1. ^ a b c PSR B0943+10 -- Pulsar in SIMBAD
  2. ^ a b c d e f Zang, Bing; Sanwal, Divas & Pavlov, George G. (2005). "An XMM-Newton Observation of the Drifting Pulsar B0943+10". Astrophysical Journal. 624 (2): L109–L112. arXiv:astro-ph/0503423. Bibcode:2005ApJ...624L.109Z. doi:10.1086/430522.
  3. ^ G.S. Mudur (25 January 2013). "Pune telescope spots Jekyll & Hyde puzzle in sky". The Telegraph, India. Retrieved 31 January 2013.
  4. ^ Shklovsky, Iosif (1970). "Rozhdyonnye katastrofoi". In N. Lazarev, F. Naumov (eds.). Evrika-70 (in Russian). Moscow: Molodaya Gvardiya. p. 16.CS1 maint: uses editors parameter (link)
  5. ^ Braude, S. Y.; et al., eds. (2012). A Brief History of Radio Astronomy in the USSR. A Collection of Scientific Essays. Astrophysics and Space Science Library. 382. Springer. p. 45. doi:10.1007/978-94-007-2834-9. ISBN 978-94-007-2833-2.
  6. ^ a b ESA (25 January 2013). "Baffling pulsar leaves astronomers in the dark". Retrieved 31 January 2013.
  7. ^ Elizabeth Howell (24 January 2013). "Weird Spinning Star Defies Explanation". Retrieved 31 January 2013.
  8. ^ a b Staff (24 January 2013). "Chameleon Pulsar Dramatically Changes the Way It Shines". Retrieved 31 January 2013.
  9. ^ a b Hermsen, W.; Hessels, J. W. T.; Kuiper, L.; Van Leeuwen, J.; Mitra, D.; De Plaa, J.; Rankin, J. M.; Stappers, B. W.; Wright, G. A. E.; Basu, R.; Alexov, A.; Coenen, T.; Grießmeier, J. - M.; Hassall, T. E.; Karastergiou, A.; Keane, E.; Kondratiev, V. I.; Kramer, M.; Kuniyoshi, M.; Noutsos, A.; Serylak, M.; Pilia, M.; Sobey, C.; Weltevrede, P.; Zagkouris, K.; Asgekar, A.; Avruch, I. M.; Batejat, F.; Bell, M. E.; Bell, M. R. (2013). "Synchronous X-ray and Radio Mode Switches: A Rapid Global Transformation of the Pulsar Magnetosphere". Science. 339 (6118): 436–439. arXiv:1302.0203. Bibcode:2013Sci...339..436H. doi:10.1126/science.1230960. PMID 23349288.
  10. ^ Yue, Y. L.; Cui, X. H.; Xu, R. X. (2006). "Is PSR B0943+10 a low-mass quark star?". Astrophysical Journal. 649 (2): L95. arXiv:astro-ph/0603468v2. Bibcode:2006ApJ...649L..95Y. doi:10.1086/508421.
  11. ^ "Detection of regular variations in the intensity and pulse time of arrival of the anomalous pulsar PSR B0943+10". S. A. Suleymanova and A. E. Rodin, (21 May 2014).
  12. ^ "The Extrasolar Planets Encyclopaedia Planet PSR B0943+10 c"
  13. ^ "The Extrasolar Planets Encyclopaedia Planet PSR B0943+10 b"