May 22, 1996

Astronomers Here Discover Bursting Pulsars

Astronomers Here Discover Bursting Pulsars

May 23, 1996

Scientists at Marshall have recently discovered a totally new kind of object in deep space. This bizarre object emits huge bursts of gamma-ray energy and pulsates sharply in brightness. Dr. John Horack stated that "...these behaviors have been observed separately in a wide range of objects, however they have never been seen before coming from the same object." Dubbed theBursting Pulsar, the object appears to be located near the center of our Milky Way Galaxy, and is the only known object to possess both of these types of gamma-ray emissions.

Marshall Scientists, using the Burst and Transient Source Experiment, currently in orbit aboard NASA's Compton Gamma Ray Observatory, made their discovery in December, after analysis of a routine sky sweep.

For more information, please contact

Dr. Jerry Fishman
Code ES84
NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center
Huntsville AL 35812

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Curator: Bryan Walls
NASA Official: John M. Horack