Pulsar Observations with Radio Telescope FAST

Ren-Dong Nan, Qi-Ming Wang, Li-Chun Zhu, Wen-Bai Zhu, Cheng-Jin Jin, Heng-Qian Gan


FAST, Five hundred meter Aperture Spherical Telescope, is the Chinese effort for the international project SKA, Square Kilometer Array. An innovative engineering concept and design pave a new road to realizing huge single dish in the most effective way. Three outstanding features of the telescope are the unique karst depressions as the sites, the active main reflector which corrects spherical aberration on the ground to achieve full polarization and wide band without involving complex feed system, and the light focus cabin driven by cables and servomechanism plus a parallel robot as secondary adjustable system to carry the most precise parts of the receivers. Besides a general coverage of those critical technologies involved in FAST concept, the progresses in demonstrating model being constructed at the Miyun Radio Observatory of the NAOC is introduced. Being the most sensitive radio telescope, FAST will enable astronomers to jumpstart many of science goals, for example, the natural hydrogen line surveying in distant galaxies, looking for the first generation of shining objects, hearing the possible signal from other civilizations, etc. Among these subjects, the most striking one could be pulsar study. Large scale survey by FAST will not only improve the statistics of the pulsar population, but also may offer us a good fortune to pick up more of the most exotic, even unknown types like a sub-millisecond pulsar or a neutron star – black hole binary as the telescope is put into operation.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.1088/1009-9271/6/S2/57


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