Science News

Curated by RSF Research Staff

Space Jellyfish show Types of Pulsar Wind Nebulas

Studying the configuration and structural anatomy of spinning bodies that exhibit fluid dynamic principles reveals insights into the universal mechanisms at play in giving rise to the kinds of coherence that produces order and organizational dynamics.

This can be seen clearly in such characteristics as the main forces driving black holes, neutron stars, pulsars, quasars, and supernovae dynamics that have certain commonality to the mechanisms of less tumultuous systems such as galaxies, stellar, and planetary dynamics.

As a fluid dynamic phase, plasma plays a significant role in these processes, and indeed it has been described how the collective action of plasma modes drives coherence and ordering processes in discussions such as that by Haramein and Rauscher: Collective Coherent Oscillation Plasma Modes in Surrounding Media of Black Holes and Vacuum Structure -- Quantum Processes with Consideration of Spacetime Torque and Coriolis Forces (

Now, a fascinating new study has shown how the super-anatomy of pulsars gives rise to pulsar wind nebulas -- what have been colloquially termed "space jellyfish". The familiar torus structure is at the center, along the equator, and spiraling jets are located at the poles. The plasma localized to each region produces several of the characteristics of pulsars -- such as radio wave emissions from the poles and gamma ray emission from the toroidal accretion disk along the equator. Interaction with the surrounding interstellar medium, which contains charged particles as well, produces nebulae remarkably similar to living forms such as jellyfish.


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