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GWAC research in the news.

Peering into a baby magnetar with Chandra eyes

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The baby magnetar, named Swift J1818.0-1607 (or J1818 for short), lies in our galaxy and was discovered in March of 2020 by NASA’s Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory. In the middle of the pandemic, when the whole world was under lockdown, the magnetar decided to make an appearance by suddenly lighting up in X-rays and soft gamma rays. The Swift detection caught astronomers’ attention because the source launched a series of intense, millisecond duration high-energy bursts in our direction, announcing the discovery of this new kid on the block. Scientists have identified only 31 magnetars, while there are over 3,000 known neutron stars.

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