A celestial object of very small radius (typically 18 miles/30 km) and very high density, composed predominantly of closely packed neutrons. Neutron stars are thought to form by the gravitational collapse of the remnant of a massive star after a supernova explosion, provided that the star is insufficiently massive to produce a black hole.
- The final state of this explosion would be a neutron star or black hole.
- By observing the companion closely in the coming years it may even be possible to detect a neutron star or black hole emerge from the remnants of the explosion ‘in real time’.
- The longer ones are generally believed to result when a massive star collapses into a black hole, rather than into a neutron star as in a supernova explosion.
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Syllabification: neu·tron star
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