By way of introduction, and to make the review fairly self-contained, we begin with an overview of the pulsar phenomenon (§ 2). This includes a brief review of the key observed population properties as well as a summary of the main theories concerned with the origin and evolution of pulsars. In § 3, we review present understanding of the Galactic population of pulsars, discussing selection effects in the major surveys (§ 3.1), and techniques used to correct the observed sample (§ 3.2). These studies lead to robust calculations of the total number of normal and millisecond pulsars (§ 3.3) and neutron star binaries (§ 3.4) in the Galaxy and have implications for the detection of gravitational radiation from these systems. Perhaps the most important application of pulsars to relativity is the high precision science known as ``pulsar timing'' discussed in § 4 . Here it is seen that some pulsars are exceptional celestial clocks (§ 4.4). One application, a sensitive detector of long-period gravitational waves, is discussed in § 5 . Finally, in § 6, we outline likely areas where progress may be made in the future.
|Binary and Millisecond Pulsars
D. R. Lorimer (email@example.com)
© Max-Planck-Gesellschaft. ISSN 1433-8351
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