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11th of May 2017
Identification of the white dwarf companion to millisecond pulsar J2317+1439
by Shi Dai (CASS)
We report the identification of the optical counterpart to the companion of the millisecond pulsar PSR J2317+1439. At the timing position of the pulsar, we find an object with magnitudes of g = 22.96±0.05 mag, r = 22.86±0.04 mag and i = 22.82±0.05 mag. The magnitudes and colors of the object are consistent with it being a white dwarf. By comparing with white dwarf cooling models, we estimate that it has a mass of 0.39+0.13−0.10 M⊙, an effective temperature of 8077+550−470 K and a cooling age of 10.9±0.3 Gyr. Combining our results with published constraints on the orbital parameters obtained through pulsar timing, we estimate the pulsar mass to be 3.4+1.4−1.1 M⊙. Although the constraint on the pulsar mass is still weak, there is a significant possibility that the pulsar could be more massive than two solar mass.

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