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CU Virginis - the first stellar pulsar

Kellett, B.J. and Graffagnino, Vito G. and Bingham, Robert and Muxlow, Tom W. B. and Gunn, Alistair G. (2007) CU Virginis - the first stellar pulsar. arXiv.org, Ithaca, NY.

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Abstract

CU Virginis is one of the brightest radio emitting members of the magnetic chemically peculiar (MCP) stars and also one of the fastest rotating. We have now discovered that CU Vir is unique among stellar radio sources in generating a persistent, highly collimated, beam of coherent, 100% polarised, radiation from one of its magnetic poles that sweeps across the Earth every time the star rotates. This makes the star strikingly similar to a pulsar. This similarity is further strengthened by the observation that the rotating period of the star is lengthening at a phenomenal rate (significantly faster than any other astrophysical source - including pulsars) due to a braking mechanism related to its very strong magnetic field.