AAS Meeting #194 - Chicago, Illinois, May/June 1999
Session 52. White Dwarfs, Neutron Stars and Pulsars
Display, Tuesday, June 1, 1999, 10:00am-7:00pm, Southeast Exhibit Hall

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[52.10] Refraction in Pulsar Dynamic Spectra

J.L. Sheckard, K.M. Becker, J.E. Espinoza Goodman, M.A. Kramer, D.R. Stinebring (Oberlin), R.S. Foster ()

We have analyzed a uniform set of pulsar dynamic spectra obtained at the NRAO 43-m telescope. The observations were made at both 800~MHz and 1330~MHz at 5 epochs spaced over 2 years. We performed a power spectrum analysis on the dynamic spectra in order to identify and quantify the amount of refraction in the observation. We have developed a ``refraction measure'' that compares the power away from the origin in the power spectrum plane with the power in the diffractive feature at the origin. By quantifying the refractive power we can estimate the frequency of occurrence of episodes of mild to strong refractive effects in the data. The ultimate goal of this work is to connect the frequency of occurrence of these phenomena with the space density of refracting structures in the interstellar medium. This research was supported by the National Science Foundation through grant AST-9619493 and through its support of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory.

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