EDP Sciences
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Volume 432, Number 2, March III 2005
Page(s) L61 - L65
Section Letters
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:200500021

A&A 432, L61-L65 (2005)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:200500021


Angular beaming and giant subpulses in the Crab pulsar

J. Gil1, 2 and G. I. Melikidze1, 3

1  Institute of Astronomy, University of Zielona Góra, Lubuska 2, 65-265, Zielona Góra, Poland
    e-mail: jag@astro.ia.uz.zgora.pl
2  Department of Physics, University of Nevada Las Vegas, Las Vegas, NV 89154, USA
3  Abastumani Astrophysical Observatory, Al. Kazbegi ave. 2a, Tbilisi 0160, Georgia

(Received 13 December 2004 / Accepted 1 February 2005 )

We propose that the extremely high brightness of the giant ultra-short subpulses observed in the Crab pulsar is consistent with the angular beaming due to relativistic motion of radiating sources along dipolar magnetic field lines. We argue that the effect of kinematic boosting inherently associated with localized relativistic sources results in apparent shortening and, in consequence, brightening of the emitted impulses. Thus we suggest that the giant subpulses are intrinsically many orders of magnitude less bright and powerful than they appear when interpreted within a temporal modulation model.

Key words: stars: pulsars: general: plasmas -- pulsars: individual: the Crab pulsar

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