recycled pulsar

(名詞) 回收脈衝星。

根據「科學」(Science) 雜誌5月21日的報導,脈衝星為一種特殊類別的中子星 (neutron stars),是大量星體爆炸成為超新星 (supernovae) 所產生的殘骸。它們誕生時會快速旋轉 (高達每秒數十次),並在旋轉時以帶有無線電能 (radio energy) 的光束劃破天際,之後轉速漸漸緩慢下來直到不再發出無線電波為止,然後消逝 (第二度消逝)。然而,一些消逝的脈衝星竟然又轉化為超長壽命、每秒可旋轉數百次的超快速毫秒脈衝星 (millisecond pulsar)。由於這些脈衝星的誕生有如吾人生活中的垃圾回收,因此科學家將之稱為「 回收脈衝星」。這是科學家首次發現的宇宙星球回收現象。

Astronomers have long theorized that these superfast stars share their orbit with a companion star from which they leech extra material. The material settles around the pulsar’s middle in a so-called accretion disk. As material from the disk falls onto the surface of the pulsar, it imparts enough angular momentum to spin back up into what scientists call a ”recycled pulsar.” “We mean it in the same sense as recycling your plastics,” Archibald said. “These pulsars have died and become invisible and useless to us, but they get brought back to life by getting fed from a companion.”
—Lisa Grossman, " Wired Science News for Your Neurons Missing Link in Pulsar Evolution Is a Cannibal," Wired, May 21, 2009