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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available February 1, 2024
  2. ABSTRACT With unparalleled rotational stability, millisecond pulsars (MSPs) serve as ideal laboratories for numerous astrophysical studies, many of which require precise knowledge of the distance and/or velocity of the MSP. Here, we present the astrometric results for 18 MSPs of the ‘MSPSR$\pi$’ project focusing exclusively on astrometry of MSPs, which includes the re-analysis of three previously published sources. On top of a standardized data reduction protocol, more complex strategies (i.e. normal and inverse-referenced 1D interpolation) were employed where possible to further improve astrometric precision. We derived astrometric parameters using sterne, a new Bayesian astrometry inference package that allows the incorporation of prior information based on pulsar timing where applicable. We measured significant (${>}3\, \sigma$) parallax-based distances for 15 MSPs, including 0.81 ± 0.02 kpc for PSR J1518+4904 – the most significant model-independent distance ever measured for a double neutron star system. For each MSP with a well-constrained distance, we estimated its transverse space velocity and radial acceleration. Among the estimated radial accelerations, the updated ones of PSR J1012+5307 and PSR J1738+0333 impose new constraints on dipole gravitational radiation and the time derivative of Newton’s gravitational constant. Additionally, significant angular broadening was detected for PSR J1643−1224, which offers an independent check of the postulated association between the HIImore »region Sh 2-27 and the main scattering screen of PSR J1643−1224. Finally, the upper limit of the death line of γ-ray-emitting pulsars is refined with the new radial acceleration of the hitherto least energetic γ-ray pulsar PSR J1730−2304.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 17, 2024
  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available October 1, 2023
  4. Abstract

    The repeating fast radio bursts (FRBs) 180916.J0158 and 121102 are visible during periodically occurring windows in time. We consider the constraints on internal magnetic fields and geometries if the cyclical behavior observed for FRB 180916.J0158 and FRB 121102 is due to the precession of magnetars. In order to frustrate vortex line pinning we argue that internal magnetic fields must be stronger than about 1016G, which is large enough to prevent superconductivity in the core and destroy the crustal lattice structure. We conjecture that the magnetic field inside precessing magnetars has three components: (1) a dipole component with characteristic strength ∼ 1014G; (2) a toroidal component with characteristic strength ∼ 1015–1016G that only occupies a modest fraction of the stellar volume; and (3) a disordered field with characteristic strength ∼ 1016G. The disordered field is primarily responsible for permitting precession, which stops once this field component decays away, which we conjecture happens after ∼1000 yr. Conceivably, as the disordered component damps bursting activity diminishes and eventually ceases. We model the quadrupolar magnetic distortion of the star, which is due to its ordered components primarily, as triaxial and very likely prolate. We address the question of whether the spin frequency oughtmore »to be detectable for precessing, bursting magnetars by constructing a specific model in which bursts happen randomly in time with random directions distributed in or between cones relative to a single symmetry axis. Within the context of these specific models, we find that there are precession geometries for which detecting the spin frequency is very unlikely.

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  5. Abstract

    We present the discovery of 25 new repeating fast radio burst (FRB) sources found among CHIME/FRB events detected between 2019 September 30 and 2021 May 1. The sources were found using a new clustering algorithm that looks for multiple events colocated on the sky having similar dispersion measures (DMs). The new repeaters have DMs ranging from ∼220 to ∼1700 pc cm−3, and include sources having exhibited as few as two bursts to as many as twelve. We report a statistically significant difference in both the DM and extragalactic DM (eDM) distributions between repeating and apparently nonrepeating sources, with repeaters having a lower mean DM and eDM, and we discuss the implications. We find no clear bimodality between the repetition rates of repeaters and upper limits on repetition from apparently nonrepeating sources after correcting for sensitivity and exposure effects, although some active repeating sources stand out as anomalous. We measure the repeater fraction over time and find that it tends to an equilibrium of2.62.6+2.9% over our total time-on-sky thus far. We also report on 14 more sources, which are promising repeating FRB candidates and which merit follow-up observations for confirmation.

  6. Abstract The dispersive sweep of fast radio bursts (FRBs) has been used to probe the ionized baryon content of the intergalactic medium 1 , which is assumed to dominate the total extragalactic dispersion. Although the host-galaxy contributions to the dispersion measure appear to be small for most FRBs 2 , in at least one case there is evidence for an extreme magneto-ionic local environment 3,4 and a compact persistent radio source 5 . Here we report the detection and localization of the repeating FRB 20190520B, which is co-located with a compact, persistent radio source and associated with a dwarf host galaxy of high specific-star-formation rate at a redshift of 0.241 ± 0.001. The estimated host-galaxy dispersion measure of approximately $${903}_{-111}^{+72}$$ 903 − 111 + 72 parsecs per cubic centimetre, which is nearly an order of magnitude higher than the average of FRB host galaxies 2,6 , far exceeds the dispersion-measure contribution of the intergalactic medium. Caution is thus warranted in inferring redshifts for FRBs without accurate host-galaxy identifications.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 30, 2023
  7. Annotated IMU sensor data from smart devices and wearables are essential for developing supervised models for fine-grained human activity recognition, albeit generating sufficient annotated data for diverse human activities under different environments is challenging. Existing approaches primarily use human-in-the-loop based techniques, including active learning; however, they are tedious, costly, and time-consuming. Leveraging the availability of acoustic data from embedded microphones over the data collection devices, in this paper, we propose LASO, a multimodal approach for automated data annotation from acoustic and locomotive information. LASO works over the edge device itself, ensuring that only the annotated IMU data is collected, discarding the acoustic data from the device itself, hence preserving the audio-privacy of the user. In the absence of any pre-existing labeling information, such an auto-annotation is challenging as the IMU data needs to be sessionized for different time-scaled activities in a completely unsupervised manner. We use a change-point detection technique while synchronizing the locomotive information from the IMU data with the acoustic data, and then use pre-trained audio-based activity recognition models for labeling the IMU data while handling the acoustic noises. LASO efficiently annotates IMU data, without any explicit human intervention, with a mean accuracy of 0.93 ($\pm 0.04$) andmore »0.78 ($\pm 0.05$) for two different real-life datasets from workshop and kitchen environments, respectively.« less
  8. Abstract We present new discoveries and results from long-term timing of 72 pulsars discovered in the Pulsar Arecibo L -band Feed Array (PALFA) survey, including precise determination of astrometric and spin parameters, and flux density and scatter broadening measurements at 1.4 GHz. Notable discoveries include two young pulsars (characteristic ages ∼30 kyr) with no apparent supernova remnant associations, three mode-changing, 12 nulling and two intermittent pulsars. We detected eight glitches in five pulsars. Among them is PSR J1939+2609, an apparently old pulsar (characteristic age ∼1 Gy), and PSR J1954+2529, which likely belongs to a newly emerging class of binary pulsars. The latter is the only pulsar among the 72 that is clearly not isolated: a nonrecycled neutron star with a 931 ms spin period in an eccentric ( e = 0.114) wide ( P b = 82.7 days) orbit with a companion of undetermined nature having a minimum mass of ∼0.6 M ⊙ . Since operations at Arecibo ceased in 2020 August, we give a final tally of PALFA sky coverage, and compare its 207 pulsar discoveries to the known population. On average, they are 50% more distant than other Galactic plane radio pulsars; PALFA millisecond pulsars (MSPs) have twicemore »the dispersion measure per unit spin period than the known population of MSP in the plane. The four intermittent pulsars discovered by PALFA more than double the population of such objects, which should help to improve our understanding of pulsar magnetosphere physics. The statistics for these, rotating radio transients, and nulling pulsars suggest that there are many more of these objects in the Galaxy than was previously thought.« less