Origin of the binary pulsar J0737-3039B

Tsvi Piran*, Nir J. Shaviv

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


Evolutionary scenarios suggest that the progenitor of the new binary pulsar J0737-3039B was a He star with M > (2.1-2.3)M. We show that this case implies that the binary must have a large (>120 km/s) center of mass velocity. However, the location, ∼50 pc from the Galactic plane, suggests that the system has, at high likelihood, a significantly smaller center of mass velocity and a progenitor more massive than 2.1M is ruled out (at 97% C.L.). A progenitor mass around 1.45M, involving a new previously unseen gravitational collapse, is kinematically favored. The low mass progenitor is consistent with the recent scintillation based velocity measurement of 66 ± 15 km/s and rules out the high mass solution at 99% C.L. Conversely, if the unlikely higher mass solution is the true one we should increase the estimated rate of neutron star mergers by a factor of at least 2.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number051102
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number5
StatePublished - 11 Feb 2005


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