pul·​sar | \ˈpəl-ˌsär \

Definition of pulsar 

: a celestial source of pulsating electromagnetic radiation (such as radio waves) characterized by a short relatively constant interval (such as .033 second) between pulses that is held to be a rotating neutron star

Examples of pulsar in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Some of the most interesting objects in astrophysics are pulsars, which are rapidly spinning neutron stars. Frank Wilczek, WSJ, "Gyroscopes, Pulsars and the Power of Spin," 13 Sep. 2018 One white dwarf and the pulsar are orbiting each other every 1.6 days. James Geach, Scientific American, "Triple-Star Test Shows Einstein Was Right, Again," 5 July 2018 Both before and after her discovery, male graduate students often won the prize, including one who studied pulsars. Brian Keating, WIRED, "There's Nothing Noble about Science’s Nobel Prize Gender Gap," 27 May 2018 Of course, the pulsar and white dwarf are very massive objects themselves, with strong self gravity. James Geach, Scientific American, "Triple-Star Test Shows Einstein Was Right, Again," 5 July 2018 Today, scientists know that a pulsar—the corpse of a massive star, as dense as an atomic nucleus and the size of a city, spinning 30 times a second—lurks at the center and energizes it. Sarah Scoles, WIRED, "The Woman Who Knows Everything About the Universe," 4 Apr. 2018 From our perspective, pulsars are like cosmic lighthouses, sending us flashes of light hundreds or even thousands of times per second. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "NASA Is Using X-Rays From Distant Pulsars to Navigate in Space," 12 Jan. 2018 The researchers tracked the pulsar's movements by monitoring its radio-wave emissions. Mike Wall, NBC News, "Einstein's theory of relativity passes its toughest test yet," 5 July 2018 The neutron star is a fast-spinning type known as a pulsar. Mike Wall, NBC News, "Einstein's theory of relativity passes its toughest test yet," 5 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pulsar.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of pulsar

1968, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for pulsar

pulse + -ar (as in quasar)

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Last Updated

13 Nov 2018

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The first known use of pulsar was in 1968

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English Language Learners Definition of pulsar

: a type of star that gives off a rapidly repeating series of radio waves

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Spanish Central: Translation of pulsar

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