NASA satellite discovers brilliant "mighty mouse" pulsar

October 8, 2014 8:08 PM

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NASA satellite discovers brilliant "mighty mouse" pulsar

A NASA space telescope studying X-ray emissions from a nearby galaxy has discovered the brightest pulsar ever detected, the fast-spinning remnant of a collapsed star that shines so intensely it was initially mistaken for a massive black hole, a possible "missing link" between compact stellar-mass black holes and the unseen monsters lurking at the cores of many galaxies.

While the brilliant pulsar may, in fact, become a black hole some day, it is not yet a member of the family tree. But theorists cannot explain how an object just one-and-a-half times as massive as the sun can suck in enough raw material to generate the high-energy X-ray emissions detected by NASA's ...

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