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Astron. Astrophys. 349, 1017-1026 (1999)


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On the physics of cold MHD winds from oblique rotators

S.V. Bogovalov

Moscow Engineering Physics Institute, Kashirskoje Shosse 31, 115409 Moscow, Russia (bogoval@photon.exp.mephi.ru)

Received 29 March 1999 / Accepted 18 June 1999

Abstract

I show that the self-consistent solution of the problem of MHD plasma flow in the magnetosphere of an oblique rotator with an initially split-monopole magnetic field is reduced to the solution of a similar problem for the axisymmetric rotator. All properties of the MHD cold plasma flows from the axisymmetric rotators with the initial split-monopole magnetic field are valid for the oblique rotators as well. Rotational losses of the oblique rotator do not depend on the inclination angle and there is no temporal evolution of this angle. Self - consistent analytical and numerical solutions for the axisymmetric plasma flows obtained earlier show that the rotators can be divided on both fast rotators ([FORMULA]) and slow rotators ([FORMULA]), where [FORMULA] is the ratio of the Poynting flux over the matter energy flux in the flow at the equator on the surface of the star, [FORMULA], [FORMULA] and [FORMULA] being the initial velocity and the Lorentz-factor of the plasma. The self-consistent approximate analytical solution for the plasma flow from the oblique rotator is obtained under the condition [FORMULA]. Implications of these results for radio pulsars are discussed. In particular, I argue that all radio pulsars are apparently the slow rotators ejecting the Poynting dominated relativistic wind.

Key words: Magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) – stars: pulsars: general – ISM: jets and outflows


© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1999

Online publication: September 13, 1999

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