Scintillation Arcs: Probing Turbulence and Structure in the ISM
Multi-path scattering through inhomogeneities in the interstellar medium causes many related effects. In this review, I concentrate on the phenomenon of scintillation arcs, which are parabolic patterns in the secondary spectrum caused by interference between different angular components of the scatter-broadened image of a pulsar. Scintillation arcs are now fairly well understood. The measured curvature of the arc, together with proper motion and distance information about the pulsar, can be used to determine the location of thin scattering screens along the line of sight to the object. Some recent work of this type is presented. The puzzle of substructure in the power distribution of scintillation arcs is poorly understood, however, and is commented on as an open puzzle. In particular, some inferred physical structures in the ISM are small scale (~ 1 AU) and over-dense with respect to the background medium. Finally, an application of scintillation arc studies to the correction of high-precision pulsar timing is presented.
Stinebring Daniel R. 2006. "Scintillation Arcs: Probing Turbulence and Structure in the ISM." Chinese Journal of Astronomy and Astrophysics 6(Suppl. 2): 204-210.
Chinese Journal of Astronomy and Astrophysics
Physics and Astronomy