Radio pulsars: the physics lab with a catch [slides]
Dr. Adam Deller, ARC Future Fellow, Senior Lecturer
Neutron stars are an incredibly versatile laboratory for studying physics, creating conditions that we cannot replicate on Earth. Over the last 5 decades, these laboratories have provided numerous breakthroughs, particular in the study of gravitation, where radio pulsar timing provided the first indirect evidence of gravitational waves and is poised to detect the low-frequency gravitational wave background created by binary supermassive black holes. What is remarkable is that so much of this progress has been made despite huge gaps in our knowledge about the laboratories themselves! In this talk I will discuss some of these gaps, the ongoing efforts to fill them in, and what the implications the success or failure of these efforts will have on future radio pulsar science with (for instance) the Square Kilometre Array.