Radio Signals from Axion Dark Matter Conversion in Neutron Star Magnetospheres

Anson Hook, Yonatan Kahn, Benjamin R. Safdi, Zhiquan Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


We show that axion dark matter may be detectable through narrow radio lines emitted from neutron stars. Neutron star magnetospheres host both a strong magnetic field and a plasma frequency that increases towards the neutron star surface. As the axions pass through the magnetosphere, they can resonantly convert into radio photons when the plasma frequency matches the axion mass. We solve the axion-photon mixing equations, including a full treatment of the magnetized plasma, to obtain the conversion probability. We discuss possible neutron star targets and how they may probe the QCD-axion parameter space in the mass range of ∼0.2-40 μeV.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number241102
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number24
StatePublished - Dec 13 2018
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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