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China's FAST telescope identifies 93 pulsars

(Xinhua)    15:18, August 30, 2019

Photo taken on Aug. 27, 2019 shows China's Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope (FAST) in southwest China's Guizhou Province. China's FAST, the world's largest single-dish radio telescope, will greet the third anniversary of operation that began in September 2016. (Xinhua/Ou Dongqu)

GUIYANG, Aug. 30 -- China's Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical Radio Telescope (FAST), the world's largest single-dish radio telescope, has identified 93 new pulsars since October 2017, the research team announced Friday.

A pulsar is a highly magnetized, rotating neutron star, which emits two beams of electromagnetic radiation.

Since the first time FAST reported it had found pulsars in October 2017, the telescope has already detected 132 promising pulsar candidates, 93 of them had been confirmed, the research team said.

Zhu Wenbai, a researcher with National Astronomical Observatories, said around 3,000 pulsars have been identified by global scientists since the first one was discovered by humans in 1967.

Pulsar observation is an important task for FAST, which can be used to confirm the existence of gravitational radiation and black holes, and help solve many other major questions in physics.

Located in a naturally deep and round karst depression in southwest China's Guizhou Province, FAST was put into trial operation in September 2016.

FAST is also in charge of the exploration of interstellar molecules and interstellar communication signals.

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(Web editor: Shi Xi, Bianji)

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