|Submitter:||Joeri van Leeuwen|
|Description:|| IAU Symposium 291 "Neutron Stars and Pulsars: Challenges and Opportunities after 80 years", held in Beijing 2012, featured a rich harvest of recent scientific discoveries, looking forward to the many exciting avenues for future neutron-star research. The proceedings of this symposium have now appeared, edited by Joeri van Leeuwen (ASTRON). |
The volume (CUP, Amazon, PDF Preprint) starts with general, lively, comprehensive introductions to three main themes that successfully communicate the excitement of current pulsar research: a general overview, probing gravitation, and magnetars.
The subsequent reviews and contributions on hot topics cover: ongoing searches for pulsars, both radio and gamma-ray; neutron star formation and properties; binary pulsars; pulsar timing and tests of gravitational theories; magnetars; radio transients; radio, X-ray and gamma-ray pulse properties and emission mechanisms; and future facilities. This range of topics clearly illustrates the diverse nature and wide application of neutron-star research. No less than 5 contributions describe the latest LOFAR pulsar results: the review (Kondratiev), the pilot search (Coenen), the low-frequency pulses (Kondratiev), the real-time pulse search (Falcke), and the B0943+10 XMM/LOFAR synchronous switching (Van Leeuwen) .
Through a combination of introductory reviews and practically complete coverage of current results from across the electromagnetic spectrum, IAU S291 is a great reference for neutron-star researchers while providing an excellent read for advanced undergraduate and starting graduate students.
The cover figure combines the 1932 detection of the neutron with the state of modern neutron-star and pulsar research, in 2012. In the left-hand side photograph, neutrons have collided with the atoms in a layer of paraffin wax, ejecting a proton. The proton path is visible in the ionization chamber. The right-hand panel shows an HST/Chandra false-color image of supernova remnant 1E 0102-7219. Overlaid for illustration is Westerbork radio data of the Crab pulsar.