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Paper: Magnetic Field Decay Makes Neutron Stars Look Older Than They Are
Volume: 451, 9th Pacific Rim Conference on Stellar Astrophysics
Page: 231
Authors: Zhang, S.; Xie, Y
Abstract: It is commonly accepted that a neutron star is produced, when a massive star exhausts its nuclear fuel and ends its life in a core-collapse supernova explosion. This scenario is confirmed by the detection of pulsars, which are believed to be rapidly spinning neutron stars, in the central regions of many supernova remnants. Neutron stars and their associated supernova remnants should therefore have the same ages. As expected, the age of the Crab Pulsar, the first to be connected with a supernova remnant (the Crab Nebula), can be inferred from its current spin period and its derivative and indeed has about the same age of the supernova remnant, that was produced from a historically recorded supernova explosion in 1054. However most neutron stars appear to be much older than the ages of their associated supernova remnants, a puzzle not yet understood. Another puzzle is that so far no convincing evidence has been found in favor of magnetic field decay in neutron stars, that is predicted in most models of neutron stars. Here we show convincing evidence of magnetic field decay in some young neutron stars, and that the magnetic field decay can alter their spinning behaviors significantly such that these neutron stars appear much older than they really are.
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