First Einstein@Home Discovery!

We are delighted to announce that Einstein@Home has made its first discovery: a radio pulsar, found in data from the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico.

Details are available in a paper published online by Science today. Science has given us permission to post a copy of the abstract and paper here. They are also on the Science website here. The manuscript is also in the arXiv preprint archive (use the PDF link in the top right corner).

A press-conference webcast about this first discovery is also available.

The name of the pulsar is PSR J2007+2722. It is a 40.8 Hz isolated pulsar, 17,000 light years distant in the plane of the Galaxy, and is most likely a Disrupted Recycled Pulsar (DRP). If so, it is the fastest DRP yet discovered.

The Einstein@Home volunteers whose computers found the pulsar with the highest significance are Chris and Helen Colvin, from Ames Iowa and Daniel Gebhardt, Musikinformatik, Universitaet Mainz.

Additional information about the discovery is available on our web pages. I will also talk about it at the London Citizen Cyberscience Summit on September 2nd.

We thank ALL Einstein@Home volunteers for their support, and look forward eagerly to our next discovery.

Bruce Allen, Director, Einstein@Home
August 12, 2010

Comments

barkster
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Bruce and company (that means

Bruce and company (that means everyone, I guess)... CONGRATS!!! The news of this discovery is a triumph for all of us, even if the data was only "significant" on two computers.

I had quit BOINCing after I lost 2 hard drives and about 4 years worth of photographs, but this makes it feel (almost) like it was worth the loss.

Success breeds success. KEEP IT UP!!!

I am now opening a bottle of Lagavulin 16 to celebrate this grand occasion. Cheers to all!

"No, I'm not a scientist... but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express."

Mike Hewson
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RE: Bruce and company (that

Message 98940 in response to message 98939

Quote:

Bruce and company (that means everyone, I guess)... CONGRATS!!! The news of this discovery is a triumph for all of us, even if the data was only "significant" on two computers.

I had quit BOINCing after I lost 2 hard drives and about 4 years worth of photographs, but this makes it feel (almost) like it was worth the loss.

Success breeds success. KEEP IT UP!!!

I am now opening a bottle of Lagavulin 16 to celebrate this grand occasion. Cheers to all!


It's The Barkster! Hey, The Barkster's back .... :-)

So this is the 'bonfire in a bottle' 16 year old stuff? We'll call the fire brigade for you then ....

Cheers, Mike.

I have made this letter longer than usual because I lack the time to make it shorter. Blaise Pascal

Dee Garner
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Hi Sarge :) Yep, for me,

Message 98941 in response to message 98938

Hi Sarge :)

Yep, for me, it was the news about the Pulsar find that brought me here :)
I saw it on the UK BBC News website and thought I would like to help out if I could.

Dee

Bruce Allen
Bruce Allen
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RE: Yep, for me, it was the

Message 98942 in response to message 98941

Quote:
Yep, for me, it was the news about the Pulsar find that brought me here :)
I saw it on the UK BBC News website and thought I would like to help out if I could.

Welcome! I see you've already started to accumulate computing credits -- well done!

Director, Einstein@Home

Cathy et Fred
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Hi everybody! I just want to

Hi everybody!
I just want to say congratulations for this discovery! I hope the first of many.
I'm new in this project but I believe in it.

(Sorry for my poor english, I'm... french...)

Bill592
Bill592
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Wow ! I haven’t been on

Wow ! I haven’t been on the site in a couple of months and,
was surprised and pleased to see this ! Congratulations !

Bill

Dee Garner
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Your English seems fine to me

Message 98945 in response to message 98943

Your English seems fine to me :)
Welcome :)

Mike Hewson
Mike Hewson
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I notice that our TFLOPS has

I notice that our TFLOPS has moved up in recent weeks, just now 292.4, from the low 270's .....

Cheers, Mike.

I have made this letter longer than usual because I lack the time to make it shorter. Blaise Pascal

Ver Greeneyes
Ver Greeneyes
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RE: Your English seems fine

Message 98947 in response to message 98945

Quote:
Your English seems fine to me :)
Welcome :)


99% of the time when someone apologizes for their English, their grammar is at least good enough to get by and their spelling is above average ;)

TheTinker
TheTinker
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Bruce: This discovery is

Bruce:

This discovery is great news!
All the long hours of administration to keep the LIGO and the servers humming has yielded a 'payoff'. I hope this will be the first discovery of many and perhaps some photos from the some time booked on the LBT would give us a true appreciation for the quadrant of the sky where this was found.

Keep up the good work!

Cheers,
Ian
TheTinker@team Carl Sagan

Even though I am a scientist, astrophysics is NOT my specialty - it is my humble pleasure to contribute to these amazing discoveries.

Ian.

Bruce Allen
Bruce Allen
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RE: I notice that our

Message 98949 in response to message 98946

Quote:
I notice that our TFLOPS has moved up in recent weeks, just now 292.4, from the low 270's .....

Please also see the boincstats summary of Einstein@Home users.

You can see that we added about 12,000 new volunteers since the August 12th announcement of PSR J2007+2722. My fondest wish is that some substantial fraction of our old volunteers, who have stopped running Einstein@Home, now start running it again. That could significantly boost Einstein@Home throughput/performance.

Cheers,
Bruce

Director, Einstein@Home

Sarge
Sarge
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RE: RE: I notice that our

Message 98950 in response to message 98949

Quote:
Quote:
I notice that our TFLOPS has moved up in recent weeks, just now 292.4, from the low 270's .....

Please also see the boincstats summary of Einstein@Home users.

You can see that we added about 12,000 new volunteers since the August 12th announcement of PSR J2007+2722. My fondest wish is that some substantial fraction of our old volunteers, who have stopped running Einstein@Home, now start running it again. That could significantly boost Einstein@Home throughput/performance.

Cheers,
Bruce

Looks like I can eat most of my words. Congrats on the discovery and getting the news out to draw in new crunchers. (Please do see my discussion with someone else, above, regarding the "Ajax" pages on Facebook, though.)

tullio
tullio
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RE: RE: Your English

Message 98951 in response to message 98947

Quote:
Quote:
Your English seems fine to me :)
Welcome :)

99% of the time when someone apologizes for their English, their grammar is at least good enough to get by and their spelling is above average ;)


I still use my Webster Collegiate Dictionary from 1953. Few Italians ever use a dictionary and you read such horrors in Italian newspapers like "suspence" instead of "suspense", which is also French.
Tullio

tullio
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I gather from the BOINC

I gather from the BOINC Workshop slides that "our" second pulsar should be a binary system, composed by a neutron star and a white dwarf. Is it so?
Tullio

Bikeman (Heinz-Bernd Eggenstein)
Bikeman (Heinz-...
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Hi! The talk Tullio

Message 98953 in response to message 98952

Hi!

The talk Tullio mentioned seems to be the one available at http://boinc.berkeley.edu/trac/attachment/wiki/WorkShop10/BOINCws2010_Knispel.pdf.

Yes, looks like a Neutron-Star - White Dwarf binary, and with an orbital period of < 10 hours (!), comparable to the period of the famous Hulse-Taylor pulsar PSR 1913+16 which is just under 8 hrs.

CU
HBE

David
David
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how do you know u r part of

how do you know u r part of the project

tullio
tullio
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RE: how do you know u r

Message 98955 in response to message 98954

Quote:
how do you know u r part of the project


Since January 2005 (on my account page).
Tullio

Mike Hewson
Mike Hewson
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Well, we've cracked over 300

Well, we've cracked over 300 TFlops. I can't recall what our best ever is/was.

Cheers, Mike.

I have made this letter longer than usual because I lack the time to make it shorter. Blaise Pascal

Bruce Allen
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Hi Tullio, RE: I

Message 98957 in response to message 98952

Hi Tullio,

Quote:
I gather from the BOINC Workshop slides that "our" second pulsar should be a binary system, composed by a neutron star and a white dwarf. Is it so?

This is correct, though to be more precise, we can only say that the minimum mass of the companion is 0.94 solar masses. This, together with the fact that the orbit appears to be circular, makes it likely that the companion star is a white dwarf. However if the companion has a mass greater than about 1.4 solar masses then it must be a neutron star. Normally however these are found in an eccentric rather than in a circular orbit. So the current evidence points to the companion being a white dwarf, not a neutron star.

Cheers,
Bruce

Director, Einstein@Home

tullio
tullio
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Thanks Bruce for your

Message 98958 in response to message 98957

Thanks Bruce for your explanation. To dig a little deeper, does the Shapiro delay mentioned mean that the pulsar's radiation speed is lowered when the companion star passes in front of it? Thanks again.
Tullio

Benjamin Knispel
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Hi Tullio, yes, that is

Message 98959 in response to message 98958

Hi Tullio,

yes, that is effectively what the Shapiro delay does. You can imagine it as the pulsar's radio waves (and pulses) having to travel down and up again in the companion's gravitational potential well. Thus, at the point the pulses are slightly delayed compared to the propagation without the companion in the line of sight.

Cheers,
Ben

 

Einstein@Home Project

Norman
Norman
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Hi all, new to Einstein@Home

Hi all, new to Einstein@Home but used to Fold and was a long time Seti contributor back a few years. When my income became fixed (and low) I had to quit running my PC's 24/7 and so dropped out of the distributed computing gig. I saw the recent Einstein publicity and thought I'd see what it would cost me to keep my best PC up and running for a month. If I can afford it I'll keep her running. This is the most interesting project to me as I've always been an astronomy nut.

I must say I'm somewhat amused by the disappointment expressed by this project at the lack of growth. Einstein@Home appears to be the third fastest growing distributed computer project in terms of users and the fastest growing DC project in terms of hosts. That is not bad at all. I am surprised and disappointed by the total number of BOINC users though, less than 3 million? Now that is sad.

Anyway congratulations on your first discovery, looking forward to the confirmation and announcement of the second, and hoping to contribute towards the third.

Norman

Grutte Pier [Wa Oars]~GP500
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Wasn't there mentioning of a

Wasn't there mentioning of a possible second Pulsar find in the interview is there any possitive or negative match of that yet.

Do we have our second new Pulsar or do we keep looking for that nr2.

Benjamin Knispel
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Hi all, it wasn't only a

Message 98962 in response to message 98961

Hi all,

it wasn't only a possible pulsar find no. 2. We do have a second Einstein@Home pulsar, some details of which can be found at the end of my talk from the last BOINC workshop in London here.

In short: it's a pulsar in a binary with an orbital period of 9.41 hours in an almost perfectly circular orbit. The mass of the companion is not known yet, but must be at least 0.93 solar masses. Most likely it is a massive white dwarf, but it could also be a neutron star companion.

There have been almost daily observations of the system in September which allowed us to get a timing solution for the orbit. This method allows one to determine a model of the pulsar system in which the arrival time of each single radio pulse can be predicted to an average precision of a few ten microseconds in our case. Further observations should allow to determine the companion mass and orbital geometry of the system.

Cheers, Ben

 

Einstein@Home Project

Bikeman (Heinz-Bernd Eggenstein)
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Hi Ben, Will it be

Hi Ben,

Will it be possible to use this system to test indirectly the theory of gravitational waves (as was done in the Nobel prize winning work of Hulse & Taylor)?

CU
HBE

ahj
ahj
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Why no announcement :(

Message 98964 in response to message 98962

Why no announcement :(

tullio
tullio
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Who,when,where? Tullio

Who,when,where?
Tullio

Towelie
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congrats!

congrats!

Mike Hewson
Mike Hewson
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Wooo woooo !! Cracked 330

Wooo woooo !! Cracked 330 TFLOPS. :-)

Cheers, Mike.

I have made this letter longer than usual because I lack the time to make it shorter. Blaise Pascal

Rechenkuenstler
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Is there already a schedule

Message 98968 in response to message 98962

Is there already a schedule for the official announcement of the discovered second pulsar. And do we have some more candidates in the crunched results, to be investigated in more detail?

Cheers, Bernhard

Bernd Machenschalk
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As with the first discovery

Message 98969 in response to message 98968

As with the first discovery an official announcement will reveal the details of the 'second' pulsar when it has been published in a paper by PALFA collaboration. The problem with this pulsar is that is is much weaker (i.e. probably further away) than the first one, and it is indeed in binary system. Both means that much more observation time is required to confirm its existence and to determine the exact parameters than it was the case with the first discovery. The first discovery could be verified and timed within a few hours by almost any radio observatory on earth; AFAIK for the second pulsar observations are still being made and calculations done.

I am tempted to say that away from the galactic center, i.e. in the currently searched 'anti-center' data set pulsars are much thinner. I don't know of any pleasant surprises there yet, but post-processing still requires manual inspection and thus is usually a couple of days behind. And Benjamin will be away the next two weeks, which will delay this even further.

BM

BM

MP
MP
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RE: I'm disappointed at the

Message 98970 in response to message 98904

Quote:
I'm disappointed at the rate with which new volunteers are joining Einstein@Home. My hope was that the publicity would get us 1000 new volunteers per hour, for a week. The current rate is about 150 per hour.

That is still a very high rate of new user uptake.

As far as I can tell this project has no shortage of users or CPU capacity assuming you are able to minimise attrition.

Facebook, Yahoo etc ... have so many users they have a user die-off problem ... that is to say they have entire departments devoted to users who have transmitted their last kilobyte. E@H should not be that big ... and it does not need to be as a single user can fire up an entire computer lab of CPU capacity.

This project should grow manageability, not like the SETI @ Home mess (that has only stabilized in the past 3 years.