In case you don’t already know, neutron stars are one of the most exciting creations of the universe. They are formed after massive exploding stars – also known as supernovas – collapse and become small spheres (by little we mean city sizes). If they have enough density, then them form quark stars, and, eventually, they turn into black holes.
If we are to take a look at the law of conservation of angular momentum, we find out that neutron stars spin at fast rates. We are talking about 1122 rotations per second. This happens because of their vast mass and small size. They emit high-energy beams and are called “pulsars.” It really depends on which way the beams are pointing towards Earth when they are doing the rotation.
How big are these pulsars?
This kind of neutron star – pulsar – was actually recently seen by astronomers from West Virginia University. It is about 2.14 times the mass of the Sun, all in the size of a city. In order to make you better understand this, we are taking the example of a sugar cube. One single sugar cube from the star would weight about 100 million tons on Earth. It is found 4,600 light-years away, and the scientists found about it when they were searching for gravitational waves.
As you probably already know, The J0740+6620 is superior to the previous candidates: J0348+0432 and J1614-2230. It has pushed the limits of the neutron masses, which now are bigger than the Sun. The lead author of the study has made a statement about the discovery. He said that it is quite interesting because it makes us better understand how supernovas form from neutron stars, and how massive they are. He also said that experts should refine models of the stellar evolution and of the supernovas explosions in order to explain such substantial neutron stars.