Tagged: Pulsars Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • richardmitnick 1:43 pm on September 17, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Pulsars   

    From NASA: “Pulse of a Dead Star Powers Intense Gamma Rays” 

    NASA

    NASA

    September 16, 2014
    Whitney Clavin 818-354-4673
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California
    whitney.clavin@jpl.nasa.gov

    Our Milky Way galaxy is littered with the still-sizzling remains of exploded stars.

    pulsar
    The blue dot in this image marks the spot of an energetic pulsar — the magnetic, spinning core of star that blew up in a supernova explosion. NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, discovered the pulsar by identifying its telltale pulse — a rotating beam of X-rays, that like a cosmic lighthouse, intersects Earth every 0.2 seconds.

    NASA NuSTAR
    NASA/NuSTAR
    The pulsar, called PSR J1640-4631, lies in our inner Milky Way galaxy about 42,000 light-years away. It was originally identified by as an intense source of gamma rays by the High Energy Stereoscopic System (H.E.S.S.) in Namibia. NuSTAR helped pin down the source of the gamma rays to a pulsar.
    HESS Cherenko Array
    H.E.S.S. Array
    The other pink dots in this picture show low-energy X-rays detected by NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory.
    NASA Chandra Telescope
    NASA/Chandra
    In this image, NuSTAR data is blue and shows high-energy X-rays with 3 to 79 kiloelectron volts; Chandra data is pink and shows X-rays with 0.5 to 10 kiloeletron volts.
    The background image shows infrared light and was captured by NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope.

    NASA Spitzer Telescope
    NASA Spitzer

    Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SAO

    When the most massive stars explode as supernovas, they don’t fade into the night, but sometimes glow ferociously with high-energy gamma rays. What powers these energetic stellar remains?

    NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, is helping to untangle the mystery. The observatory’s high-energy X-ray eyes were able to peer into a particular site of powerful gamma rays and confirm the source: A spinning, dead star called a pulsar. Pulsars are one of several types of stellar remnants that are left over when stars blow up in supernova explosions.

    This is not the first time pulsars have been discovered to be the culprits behind intense gamma rays, but NuSTAR has helped in a case that was tougher to crack due to the distance of the object in question. NuSTAR joins NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope, and the High Energy Stereoscopic System (H.E.S.S.) in Namibia, each with its own unique strengths, to better understand the evolution of these not-so-peaceful dead stars.

    NASA Fermi Telescope
    NASA/Fermi

    “The energy from this corpse of a star is enough to power the gamma-ray luminosity we are seeing,” said Eric Gotthelf of Columbia University, New York. Gotthelf explained that while pulsars are often behind these gamma rays in our galaxy, other sources can be as well, including the outer shells of the supernova remnants, X-ray binary stars and star-formation regions. Gotthelf is lead author of a new paper describing the findings in the Astrophysical Journal.

    In recent years, the Max-Planck Institute for Astronomy’s H.E.S.S. experiment has identified more than 80 incredibly powerful sites of gamma rays, called high-energy gamma-ray sources, in our Milky Way. Most of these have been associated with prior supernova explosions, but for many, the primary source of observed gamma rays remains unknown.

    The gamma-ray source pinpointed in this new study, caled HESS J1640-465, is one of the most luminous discovered so far. It was already known to be linked with a supernova remnant, but the source of its power was unclear. While data from Chandra and the European Space Agency’s XMM-Newton telescopes hinted that the power source was a pulsar, intervening clouds of gas blocked the view, making it difficult to see.

    ESA XMM Newton
    ESA/XMM-Newton

    NuSTAR complements Chandra and XMM-Newton in its capability to detect higher-energy range of X-rays that can, in fact, penetrate through this intervening gas. In addition, the NuSTAR telescope can measure rapid X-ray pulsations with fine precision. In this particular case, NuSTAR was able to capture high-energy X-rays coming at regular fast-paced pulses from HESS J1640-465. These data led to the discovery of PSR J1640-4631, a pulsar spinning five times per second — and the ultimate power source of both the high-energy X-rays and gamma rays.

    How does the pulsar produce the high-energy rays? The pulsar’s strong magnetic fields generate powerful electric fields that accelerate charged particles near the surface to incredible speeds approaching that of light. The fast-moving particles then interact with the magnetic fields to produce the powerful beams of high-energy gamma rays and X-rays.

    “The discovery of a pulsar engine powering HESS J1640-465 allows astronomers to test models for the underlying physics that result in the extraordinary energies generated by these rare gamma-rays sources,” said Gotthelf.

    “Perhaps other luminous gamma-ray sources harbor pulsars that we can’t detect,” said Victoria Kaspi of McGill University, Montreal, Canada, a co-author on the study. “With NuSTAR, we may be able to find more hidden pulsars.”

    The new data also allowed astronomers to measure the rate at which the pulsar slows, or spins down (about 30 microseconds per year), as well as how this spin-down rate varies over time. The answers will help researchers understand how these spinning magnets — the cores of dead stars — can be the source of such extreme radiation in our galaxy.

    See the full article here.

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is the agency of the United States government that is responsible for the nation’s civilian space program and for aeronautics and aerospace research.

    President Dwight D. Eisenhower established the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in 1958 with a distinctly civilian (rather than military) orientation encouraging peaceful applications in space science. The National Aeronautics and Space Act was passed on July 29, 1958, disestablishing NASA’s predecessor, the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA). The new agency became operational on October 1, 1958.

    Since that time, most U.S. space exploration efforts have been led by NASA, including the Apollo moon-landing missions, the Skylab space station, and later the Space Shuttle. Currently, NASA is supporting the International Space Station and is overseeing the development of the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle and Commercial Crew vehicles. The agency is also responsible for the Launch Services Program (LSP) which provides oversight of launch operations and countdown management for unmanned NASA launches. Most recently, NASA announced a new Space Launch System that it said would take the agency’s astronauts farther into space than ever before and lay the cornerstone for future human space exploration efforts by the U.S.

    NASA science is focused on better understanding Earth through the Earth Observing System, advancing heliophysics through the efforts of the Science Mission Directorate’s Heliophysics Research Program, exploring bodies throughout the Solar System with advanced robotic missions such as New Horizons, and researching astrophysics topics, such as the Big Bang, through the Great Observatories [Hubble,
    Chandra, Spitzer ]and associated programs. NASA shares data with various national and international organizations such as from the Greenhouse Gases Observing Satellite.
    ScienceSprings relies on technology from

    MAINGEAR computers

    Lenovo
    Lenovo

    Dell
    Dell

     
  • richardmitnick 5:00 pm on January 13, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Pulsars,   

    From Symmetry: “Scientists pinpoint ‘very peculiar’ pulsar” 

    Scientists studying five years of data from the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope have found the first gamma-ray variable pulsar. But is it really what it seems?

    NASA Fermi Telescope
    NASA/Fermi

    January 13, 2014
    Lori Ann White

    Astrophysicists studying the gamma-ray sky have gone back over five years of survey data from the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope and discovered something new: a pulsar that varies in the amount of gamma-ray radiation it emits.

    gamma
    Courtesy of NASA/DOE/Fermi LAT Collaboration

    Pulsars have a reputation as the cosmic versions of lighthouses: These neutron stars emit beams of electromagnetic energy. The beams sweep across the sky with the pulsar’s rotations, like beacons sweeping across space. Astrophysicists have known for some time, though, that the clockwork precision of pulsars is an illusion; not only do they rotate more and more slowly as they lose energy over millennia, the amount of energy they emit in radio waves and X-rays at any one time can change too.

    But the knowledge that pulsars also vary in gamma rays is a bit surprising, says Fermi scientist Luigi Tibaldo. “The X-rays and radio waves emitted by pulsars are generated through different processes than the gamma waves,” he says. When the Energetic Gamma Ray Experiment Telescope, or EGRET, the predecessor to Fermi’s main instrument, the Large Area Telescope, saw no signs of variability, astrophysicists considered the stability of pulsars in gamma rays to be an axiom—”No, more than an axiom. A motivated conclusion. We just didn’t think they varied,” Tibaldo says.

    The pulsar, known as PSR J2021+4026, is one of the first previously unknown pulsars found by Fermi after its launch in 2008. It resides in the Gamma Cygni region—the very heart of the Swan constellation. At first, it seemed like a perfectly ordinary pulsar. Yet as Tibaldo and his colleague Massimiliano Razzano reviewed the data, they saw hints of a small, steady increase in gamma rays from the beginning of Fermi’s mission in 2008 until mid-October 2011. Then, in less than a week, gamma-ray energies dropped by almost 20 percent, while the pulsar’s rotational speed got slower and slower.

    This was “very peculiar,” Tibaldo says. A pulsar slows down because it emits energy. “Think about it,” he continues. If the rotational speed continues to drop, “the pulsar should be emitting more energy, but we weren’t seeing it. Where was the energy going?”

    Their theory, which Tibaldo presented last month at the 27th Texas Symposium on Relativistic Astrophysics, is that a violent upheaval in the intense magnetic fields surrounding the pulsar caused the variability.

    “Here we are dealing with magnetic fields trillions of times more intense than Earth’s magnetic field,” says Razzano, who presented their results at the American Astronomical Society meeting in Washington, DC, earlier this month. “Fields of that strength are currently impossible to reproduce in the laboratory.”

    These magnetic fields essentially aim the pulsar’s energy beams, and, says Tibaldo, “the field lines broke and reconfigured in less than a week. This moved the beam slightly off our line of sight. It only looks like the gamma ray flux went down because we’re no longer directly in its path.”

    In other words, researchers can only see pulsars whose beams sweep across Earth. If the pulsar’s beams were to redirect away from Earth, the signal would drop—just what the Fermi telescope observed.

    PSR J2021+4026 remains the only known pulsar that’s variable in gamma rays. With a sample set of one, Tibaldo can’t say if his team’s theory is correct or not. “Having more cases is important to understanding what’s going on,” he says.

    As the Fermi mission continues, Tibaldo and Razzano—working with a team at laboratories and universities including SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, the University of Pisa and Italy’s National Institute of Nuclear Physics—hope to gather data on additional gamma-ray-variable pulsars. With these, they may be able to determine if this new type of pulsars really stands apart from the rest, or if the only difference is in perspective.

    This work recently appeared in The Astrophysical Journal Letters.

    See the full article here.

    Symmetry is a joint Fermilab/SLAC publication.



    ScienceSprings is powered by MAINGEAR computers

     
  • richardmitnick 12:41 pm on September 25, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Pulsars   

    From ESA: “Missing link found between X-ray and radio pulsars” 

    ESASpaceForEuropeBanner
    European Space Agency

    25 September 2013
    Markus Bauer
    ESA Science and Robotic Exploration Communication Officer
    Tel: +31 71 565 6799
    Mob: +31 61 594 3 954
    Email: markus.bauer@esa.int

    Alessandro Papitto
    Institut de Ciències de l’Espai (ICE), CSIC-IEEC (Spanish National Research Council – Institute for Space Studies of Catalonia)
    Barcelona, Spain
    Tel: +34 935 868355
    Email: papitto@ice.csic.es

    Enrico Bozzo
    ISDC Data Centre for Astrophysics
    University of Geneva, Switzerland
    Tel: +41 79 3129209
    Email: Enrico.Bozzo@unige.ch

    Erik Kuulkers
    ESA Integral Project Scientist
    Tel: +34 918131358
    Email: Erik.Kuulkers@esa.int

    Norbert Schartel
    ESA XMM-Newton Project Scientist
    Tel: +34 91 8131 184
    Email: Norbert.Schartel@esa.int

    Astronomers using ESA’s Integral and XMM-Newton space observatories have caught a fast-spinning ‘millisecond pulsar’ in a crucial evolutionary phase for the first time, as it swings between emitting pulses of X-rays and radio waves.

    pulsar
    Pulsar in the Crab Nebula

    Pulsars are spinning, magnetised neutron stars, the dead cores of massive stars that exploded as a dramatic supernova after having burned up their fuel. As they spin, they sweep out pulses of electromagnetic radiation hundreds of times per second, like beams from a lighthouse. This tells us that the spin period of the neutron stars can be as short as a few milliseconds.

    neutron star
    Neutron star

    Pulsars are classified according to how their emission is generated. For example, radio pulsars are powered by the rotation of their magnetic field, while X-ray pulsars are fuelled by the accretion of material siphoned off from a companion star.

    Theory holds that initially slowly rotating neutron stars with a low-mass companion are spun up as matter accretes onto them from a surrounding disc fed by the companion. X-rays are emitted as the accreting material heats up as it falls onto the neutron star.

    After a billion years or so, the rate of accretion drops and the pulsars are thought to switch on again as a radio-emitting millisecond pulsar.

    There is thought to be an intermediate phase during which they swing back and forth between the two states several times, but until now, there has been no direct and conclusive evidence for this transitional phase.

    Thanks to the combined forces of ESA’s Integral and XMM-Newton space observatories, along with follow-up observations by NASA’s Swift and Chandra satellites and by ground-based radio telescopes, scientists have finally caught a pulsar in the act of changing between the two evolutionary steps.

    “The search is finally over: with our discovery of a millisecond pulsar that, within only a few weeks, switched from being accretion-powered and X-ray-bright to rotation-powered and bright in radio waves, we finally have the missing link in pulsar evolution,” says Alessandro Papitto from the Institute of Space Sciences in Barcelona, Spain, who led the research published this week in Nature .

    The object, identified as IGR J18245-2452, was first detected in X-rays on 28 March 2013 by Integral in the globular cluster M28, which lies in the constellation Sagittarius.

    m28
    M28 by Hubble

    See the full article here.

    The European Space Agency (ESA), established in 1975, is an intergovernmental organization dedicated to the exploration of space, currently with 19 member states. Headquartered in Paris, ESA has a staff of more than 2,000. ESA’s space flight program includes human spaceflight, mainly through the participation in the International Space Station program, the launch and operations of unmanned exploration missions to other planets and the Moon, Earth observation, science, telecommunication as well as maintaining a major spaceport, the Guiana Space Centre at Kourou, French Guiana, and designing launch vehicles. ESA science missions are based at ESTEC in Noordwijk, Netherlands, Earth Observation missions at ESRIN in Frascati, Italy, ESA Mission Control (ESOC) is in Darmstadt, Germany, the European Astronaut Centre (EAC) that trains astronauts for future missions is situated in Cologne, Germany, and the European Space Astronomy Centre is located in Villanueva de la Cañada, Spain.


    ScienceSprings is powered by MAINGEAR computers

     
  • richardmitnick 10:50 am on January 7, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , Pulsars   

    From Einstein@home: " Einstein@Home passes 1 Petaflop of computing power!" 

    Einstein@home Banner

    BruceAllenEinstein
    Bruce Allen is an American physicist and director of the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics in Hannover Germany and leader of the Einstein@Home project for the LIGO Scientific Collaboration. He is also a physics professor at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee.

    “Congratulations and thank you to all Einstein@Home volunteers: sometime shortly after January 1st 2013, Einstein@Home passed the 1 Petaflop computing-power barrier. To put this in context, according to the current (November 2012) Top-500 computing list, there are only 23 computers on our planet that deliver this much computing power.

    (One Petaflop is 1,000,000,000,000,000 floating point operations per second.)

    Congratulations and thank you again, and keep on crunching!”

    Bruce Allen
    Director, Einstein@Home

    pulsar
    A diagram of a pulsar showing its rotation axis, its magnetic axis, and its magnetic field.(NASA Goddard)

    BOINC is a leader in the field(s) of Distributed Computing, Grid Computing and Citizen Cyberscience. BOINC is more properly the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing, developed at UC Berkeley.

    Visit the BOINC web page, click on Choose projects and check out some of the very worthwhile studies you will find. Then click on Download and run BOINC software/ All Versons. Download and install the current software for your 32bit or 64bit system, for Windows, Mac or Linux. When you install BOINC, it will install its screen savers on your system as a default. You can choose to run the various project screen savers or you can turn them off. Once BOINC is installed, in BOINC Manager/Tools, click on “Add project or account manager” to attach to projects. Many BOINC projects are listed there, but not all, and, maybe not the one(s) in which you are interested. You can get the proper URL for attaching to the project at the projects’ web page(s) BOINC will never interfere with any other work on your computer.

    MAJOR PROJECTS RUNNING ON BOINC SOFTWARE

    SETI@home The search for extraterrestrial intelligence. “SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) is a scientific area whose goal is to detect intelligent life outside Earth. One approach, known as radio SETI, uses radio telescopes to listen for narrow-bandwidth radio signals from space. Such signals are not known to occur naturally, so a detection would provide evidence of extraterrestrial technology.

    Radio telescope signals consist primarily of noise (from celestial sources and the receiver’s electronics) and man-made signals such as TV stations, radar, and satellites. Modern radio SETI projects analyze the data digitally. More computing power enables searches to cover greater frequency ranges with more sensitivity. Radio SETI, therefore, has an insatiable appetite for computing power.

    Previous radio SETI projects have used special-purpose supercomputers, located at the telescope, to do the bulk of the data analysis. In 1995, David Gedye proposed doing radio SETI using a virtual supercomputer composed of large numbers of Internet-connected computers, and he organized the SETI@home project to explore this idea. SETI@home was originally launched in May 1999.”


    SETI@home is the birthplace of BOINC software. Originally, it only ran in a screensaver when the computer on which it was installed was doing no other work. With the powerand memory available today, BOINC can run 24/7 without in any way interfering with other ongoing work.

    seti
    The famous SET@home screen saver, a beauteous thing to behold.

    Einstein@home The search for pulsars. “Einstein@Home uses your computer’s idle time to search for weak astrophysical signals from spinning neutron stars (also called pulsars) using data from the LIGO gravitational-wave detectors, the Arecibo radio telescope, and the Fermi gamma-ray satellite. Einstein@Home volunteers have already discovered more than a dozen new neutron stars, and we hope to find many more in the future. Our long-term goal is to make the first direct detections of gravitational-wave emission from spinning neutron stars. Gravitational waves were predicted by Albert Einstein almost a century ago, but have never been directly detected. Such observations would open up a new window on the universe, and usher in a new era in astronomy.”

    MilkyWay@Home Milkyway@Home uses the BOINC platform to harness volunteered computing resources, creating a highly accurate three dimensional model of the Milky Way galaxy using data gathered by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. This project enables research in both astroinformatics and computer science.”

    Leiden Classical “Join in and help to build a Desktop Computer Grid dedicated to general Classical Dynamics for any scientist or science student!”

    World Community Grid (WCG) World Community Grid is a special case at BOINC. WCG is part of the social initiative of IBM Corporation and the Smarter Planet. WCG has under its umbrella currently eleven disparate projects at globally wide ranging institutions and universities. Most projects relate to biological and medical subject matter. There are also projects for Clean Water and Clean Renewable Energy. WCG projects are treated respectively and respectably on their own at this blog. Watch for news.

    Rosetta@home “Rosetta@home needs your help to determine the 3-dimensional shapes of proteins in research that may ultimately lead to finding cures for some major human diseases. By running the Rosetta program on your computer while you don’t need it you will help us speed up and extend our research in ways we couldn’t possibly attempt without your help. You will also be helping our efforts at designing new proteins to fight diseases such as HIV, Malaria, Cancer, and Alzheimer’s….”

    GPUGrid.net “GPUGRID.net is a distributed computing infrastructure devoted to biomedical research. Thanks to the contribution of volunteers, GPUGRID scientists can perform molecular simulations to understand the function of proteins in health and disease.” GPUGrid is a special case in that all processor work done by the volunteers is GPU processing. There is no CPU processing, which is the more common processing. Other projects (Einstein, SETI, Milky Way) also feature GPU processing, but they offer CPU processing for those not able to do work on GPU’s.

    gif

    These projects are just the oldest and most prominent projects. There are many others from which you can choose.

    There are currently some 300,000 users with about 480,000 computers working on BOINC projects That is in a world of over one billion computers. We sure could use your help.

    My BOINC

    graph


    ScienceSprings is powered by MAINGEAR computers

     
  • richardmitnick 2:40 pm on May 31, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Pulsars   

    From Einstein@home: Nine New Radio Pulsars discovered 

    Bruce Allen
    Director, Einstein@Home

    “In the past weeks, Einstein@Home volunteers have discovered nine new new radio pulsars! Seven were found in data from the Parkes Multi-Beam Pulsar Survey (PMPS) and two in data from Arecibo. Congratulations to:

    Robert D Burbeck (Derbyshire, UK)
    Harald Buchholz (Springfield, Virginia, USA)
    Andrew Fullford (Texas, USA)
    Pavlo Ovchinnikov (Dnipropetrovsk, Ukraine)
    Nemo Cluster (Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA)
    ATLAS Cluster (Hannover, Germany)
    Victor1st (UK)
    Dušan Pirc (Domzale, Slovenia)
    Riaan Strydom (South Africa)
    Edelgas (Germany)
    Craig G (USA)
    Brian Adrian (Dade City, Florida, USA)
    Frederick J. Pfitzer (Phoenix, Arizona, USA)
    Benjamin Rosenthal Library, Queens College, CUNY (New York City, USA)
    Masor_DC (Czech Republic)
    Gordon E. Hartman (US Navy Team, Dover, Pennsylvania, USA)
    Eric Nietering (Dearborn, Michigan, USA)
    Tim Taylor (USA)
    Christoph Donat (Ingolstadt, Germany)
    gone (USA)

    Further details about these new discoveries can be found on this web page for PMPS discoveries and this web page for Arecibo discoveries, and will be published in due course. These discoveries bring the Einstein@Home discovery total to 22 new radio pulsars since the beginning of 2012!”

    BOINC is a leader in the field(s) of Distributed Computing, Grid Computing and Citizen Cyberscience.BOINC is more properly the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing, developed at UC Berkeley.

    Visit the BOINC web page, click on Choose projects and check out some of the very worthwhile studies you will find. Then click on Download and run BOINC software/ All Versons. Download and install the current software for your 32bit or 64bit system, for Windows, Mac or Linux. When you install BOINC, it will install its screen savers on your system as a default. You can choose to run the various project screen savers or you can turn them off. Once BOINC is installed, in BOINC Manager/Tools, click on “Add project or account manager” to attach to projects. Many BOINC projects are listed there, but not all, and, maybe not the one(s) in which you are interested. You can get the proper URL for attaching to the project at the projects’ web page(s) BOINC will never interfere with any other work on your computer.

    MAJOR PROJECTS RUNNING ON BOINC SOFTWARE

    SETI@home The search for extraterrestrial intelligence. “SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) is a scientific area whose goal is to detect intelligent life outside Earth. One approach, known as radio SETI, uses radio telescopes to listen for narrow-bandwidth radio signals from space. Such signals are not known to occur naturally, so a detection would provide evidence of extraterrestrial technology.

    Radio telescope signals consist primarily of noise (from celestial sources and the receiver’s electronics) and man-made signals such as TV stations, radar, and satellites. Modern radio SETI projects analyze the data digitally. More computing power enables searches to cover greater frequency ranges with more sensitivity. Radio SETI, therefore, has an insatiable appetite for computing power.

    Previous radio SETI projects have used special-purpose supercomputers, located at the telescope, to do the bulk of the data analysis. In 1995, David Gedye proposed doing radio SETI using a virtual supercomputer composed of large numbers of Internet-connected computers, and he organized the SETI@home project to explore this idea. SETI@home was originally launched in May 1999.”


    SETI@home is the birthplace of BOINC software. Originally, it only ran in a screensaver when the computer on which it was installed was doing no other work. With the powerand memory available today, BOINC can run 24/7 without in any way interfering with other ongoing work.

    seti
    The famous SET@home screen saver, a beauteous thing to behold.

    einstein@home The search for pulsars. “Einstein@Home uses your computer’s idle time to search for weak astrophysical signals from spinning neutron stars (also called pulsars) using data from the LIGO gravitational-wave detectors, the Arecibo radio telescope, and the Fermi gamma-ray satellite. Einstein@Home volunteers have already discovered more than a dozen new neutron stars, and we hope to find many more in the future. Our long-term goal is to make the first direct detections of gravitational-wave emission from spinning neutron stars. Gravitational waves were predicted by Albert Einstein almost a century ago, but have never been directly detected. Such observations would open up a new window on the universe, and usher in a new era in astronomy.”

    MilkyWay@Home Milkyway@Home uses the BOINC platform to harness volunteered computing resources, creating a highly accurate three dimensional model of the Milky Way galaxy using data gathered by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. This project enables research in both astroinformatics and computer science.”

    Leiden Classical “Join in and help to build a Desktop Computer Grid dedicated to general Classical Dynamics for any scientist or science student!”

    World Community Grid (WCG) World Community Grid is a special case at BOINC. WCG is part of the social initiative of IBM Corporation and the Smarter Planet. WCG has under its umbrella currently eleven disparate projects at globally wide ranging institutions and universities. Most projects relate to biological and medical subject matter. There are also projects for Clean Water and Clean Renewable Energy. WCG projects are treated respectively and respectably on their own at this blog. Watch for news.

    Rosetta@home “Rosetta@home needs your help to determine the 3-dimensional shapes of proteins in research that may ultimately lead to finding cures for some major human diseases. By running the Rosetta program on your computer while you don’t need it you will help us speed up and extend our research in ways we couldn’t possibly attempt without your help. You will also be helping our efforts at designing new proteins to fight diseases such as HIV, Malaria, Cancer, and Alzheimer’s….”

    GPUGrid.net “GPUGRID.net is a distributed computing infrastructure devoted to biomedical research. Thanks to the contribution of volunteers, GPUGRID scientists can perform molecular simulations to understand the function of proteins in health and disease.” GPUGrid is a special case in that all processor work done by the volunteers is GPU processing. There is no CPU processing, which is the more common processing. Other projects (Einstein, SETI, Milky Way) also feature GPU processing, but they offer CPU processing for those not able to do work on GPU’s.

    gif

    These projects are just the oldest and most prominent projects. There are many others from which you can choose.

    There are currently some 300,000 users with about 480,000 computers working on BOINC projects That is in a world of over one billion computers. We sure could use your help.

    My BOINC

    graph

     
  • richardmitnick 2:19 pm on April 25, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Pulsars   

    From isgtw: Einstein@home – “Gamma rays, gravity waves, and galactic GPS” 

    April 25, 2012
    By Adrian Giordani

    “The volunteer computing project, Einstein@Home, is helping science lovers around the world advance scientific knowledge about gamma-ray pulsars, gravitational waves, and a galactic global positioning system. All that volunteers have to do to partake in this cutting-edge research is donate their idle computing power.

    As with most volunteer computing projects, Einstein@Home accesses the computing power it needs via an open-source application called BOINC – the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing – which was originally created for the SETI@Home project. To join, volunteers download and install BOINC and select the projects they wish to participate in. BOINC runs in the background, providing CPU and GPU cycles on the volunteers’ computers that would otherwise go unused.

    Einstein@Home was launched in 2005 to help analyse data from the Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO). LIGO is searching for direct evidence of the existence of gravitational waves – ripples in the fabric of the space-time continuum predicted by Albert Einstein’s theory of General Relativity.

    ligo

    man
    This is Bruce Allen, leader of the Einstein@Home project. Image courtesy N. Michalke / AEI Hannover.

    Today, Einstein@Home is in search of much more than gravitational waves. In addition to LIGO data, Einstein@Home is analyzing publicly-available data from the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope, the Arecibo Observatory, and the Parkes Radio Telescope. In the past six months, more than a dozen pulsars have been discovered by the volunteer computing project. Pulsars are young neutron stars – city-sized spherical remnants of a star’s supernova that produce focused beams of radio waves or gamma-ray photons. As neutron stars age, their rotation slows until they are no longer classified as pulsars.

    ‘Some neutron stars spin up to 700 times per second around their axis, some of them faster than your average kitchen blender or Formula One racing engine,’ said Benjamin Knispel, a researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute) in Hanover, Germany, who collaborates on the project.

    Pulsars are in turn being used as a type of galactic Global Positioning System to search for gravitational waves.”

    See the full article here.


    BOINC is a leader in the field(s) of Distributed Computing, Grid Computing and Citizen Cyberscience.BOINC is more properly the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing, developed at UC Berkeley.

    Visit the BOINC web page, click on Choose projects and check out some of the very worthwhile studies you will find. Then click on Download and run BOINC software/ All Versons. Download and install the current software for your 32bit or 64bit system, for Windows, Mac or Linux. When you install BOINC, it will install its screen savers on your system as a default. You can choose to run the various project screen savers or you can turn them off. Once BOINC is installed, in BOINC Manager/Tools, click on “Add project or account manager” to attach to projects. Many BOINC projects are listed there, but not all, and, maybe not the one(s) in which you are interested. You can get the proper URL for attaching to the project at the projects’ web page(s) BOINC will never interfere with any other work on your computer.

    MAJOR PROJECTS RUNNING ON BOINC SOFTWARE

    SETI@home The search for extraterrestrial intelligence. “SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) is a scientific area whose goal is to detect intelligent life outside Earth. One approach, known as radio SETI, uses radio telescopes to listen for narrow-bandwidth radio signals from space. Such signals are not known to occur naturally, so a detection would provide evidence of extraterrestrial technology.

    Radio telescope signals consist primarily of noise (from celestial sources and the receiver’s electronics) and man-made signals such as TV stations, radar, and satellites. Modern radio SETI projects analyze the data digitally. More computing power enables searches to cover greater frequency ranges with more sensitivity. Radio SETI, therefore, has an insatiable appetite for computing power.

    Previous radio SETI projects have used special-purpose supercomputers, located at the telescope, to do the bulk of the data analysis. In 1995, David Gedye proposed doing radio SETI using a virtual supercomputer composed of large numbers of Internet-connected computers, and he organized the SETI@home project to explore this idea. SETI@home was originally launched in May 1999.”


    SETI@home is the birthplace of BOINC software. Originally, it only ran in a screensaver when the computer on which it was installed was doing no other work. With the powerand memory available today, BOINC can run 24/7 without in any way interfering with other ongoing work.

    seti
    The famous SET@home screen saver, a beauteous thing to behold.

    einstein@home The search for pulsars. “Einstein@Home uses your computer’s idle time to search for weak astrophysical signals from spinning neutron stars (also called pulsars) using data from the LIGO gravitational-wave detectors, the Arecibo radio telescope, and the Fermi gamma-ray satellite. Einstein@Home volunteers have already discovered more than a dozen new neutron stars, and we hope to find many more in the future. Our long-term goal is to make the first direct detections of gravitational-wave emission from spinning neutron stars. Gravitational waves were predicted by Albert Einstein almost a century ago, but have never been directly detected. Such observations would open up a new window on the universe, and usher in a new era in astronomy.”

    MilkyWay@Home Milkyway@Home uses the BOINC platform to harness volunteered computing resources, creating a highly accurate three dimensional model of the Milky Way galaxy using data gathered by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. This project enables research in both astroinformatics and computer science.”

    Leiden Classical “Join in and help to build a Desktop Computer Grid dedicated to general Classical Dynamics for any scientist or science student!”

    World Community Grid (WCG) World Community Grid is a special case at BOINC. WCG is part of the social initiative of IBM Corporation and the Smarter Planet. WCG has under its umbrella currently eleven disparate projects at globally wide ranging institutions and universities. Most projects relate to biological and medical subject matter. There are also projects for Clean Water and Clean Renewable Energy. WCG projects are treated respectively and respectably on their own at this blog. Watch for news.

    Rosetta@home “Rosetta@home needs your help to determine the 3-dimensional shapes of proteins in research that may ultimately lead to finding cures for some major human diseases. By running the Rosetta program on your computer while you don’t need it you will help us speed up and extend our research in ways we couldn’t possibly attempt without your help. You will also be helping our efforts at designing new proteins to fight diseases such as HIV, Malaria, Cancer, and Alzheimer’s….”

    GPUGrid.net “GPUGRID.net is a distributed computing infrastructure devoted to biomedical research. Thanks to the contribution of volunteers, GPUGRID scientists can perform molecular simulations to understand the function of proteins in health and disease.” GPUGrid is a special case in that all processor work done by the volunteers is GPU processing. There is no CPU processing, which is the more common processing. Other projects (Einstein, SETI, Milky Way) also feature GPU processing, but they offer CPU processing for those not able to do work on GPU’s.

    These projects are just the oldest and most prominent projects. There are many others from which you can choose.

    There are currently some 300,000 users with about 480,000 computers working on BOINC projects That is in a world of over one billion computers. We sure could use your help.

     
    • Darmok 12:47 am on April 27, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      I used to run SETI@home all the time when I was in college. I loved watching it work.

      Like

    • richardmitnick 4:59 am on April 27, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      For me it’s simple: no SETI@home, no BOINC. BOINC was berthed in SETI@home at U.C. Berkeley. So I have SETI@home on four machines.

      Like

c
Compose new post
j
Next post/Next comment
k
Previous post/Previous comment
r
Reply
e
Edit
o
Show/Hide comments
t
Go to top
l
Go to login
h
Show/Hide help
shift + esc
Cancel
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 347 other followers

%d bloggers like this: