Neutron Star Atmospheres, Sizes and Cooling
October 21, 2010
Abstract: I’ll discuss how low-magnetic-field neutron star models have helped us to make sense of neutron star low-mass X-ray binaries in quiescence, and of at least one young neutron star in a supernova remnant (Cas A). Fitting accurate models to well-constrained spectra of neutron stars at known distances allows us to place constraints on the mass and radius of the neutron star, and thus on its interior composition. For both (transiently) accreting neutron stars and young neutron stars, measurements of the neutron star temperature allow us to constrain the cooling mechanisms and thus interior physics of the neutron stars.