Probing nulling in millisecond pulsars

Kaustubh Rajwade1* †, Yashwant Gupta1, Ujjwal Kumar1 and Mihir Arjunwadkar2
1National Centre for Radio Astrophysics, Ganeshkhind, Pune, India
2Centre for Modeling and Simulation, University of Pune, Ganeshkhind, Pune, India

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Though the phenomenon of pulse nulling has been well studied for several bright ’normal’ period pulsars, nulling studies for Millisecond Pulsars (MSPs) have not been done extensively as they require high sensitivity and high time and frequency resolutions. Such studies can be useful to probe the relevance of pulse nulling in the regime of lower magnetic fields and faster spin rates that apply for MSPs. We present new results from nulling studies of a set of 5 MSPs using the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope (GMRT). We show that the MSP PSR J0437-4715 does not null for a duration longer than shown in earlier results. For the other weaker MSPs, we employ a novel technique to obtain robust estimates of null fraction. Our results tend toward the conclusion that the MSPs studied so far do not exhibit nulling.

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Keywords : Neutron stars – Milli-second Pulsars – Nulling