Compact objects are among the most inspiring and extreme objects in the Universe, allowing us to probe a range of astrophysical phenomena unattainable on Earth, while offering opportunities to bridge research areas and astrophysics communities. Even more than 50 years into their discovery, neutron stars in particular continue to fascinate and puzzle us. The highly magnetized objects (magnetars) are also proving relevant to unraveling new mysterious extragalactic phenomena (such as fast radio bursts and neutron star mergers). I will highlight observations that led to the known `zoo’ of Galactic neutron stars, and present the current status for our understanding of how this diversity is being blurred. I will focus on their associated hosting Supernova Remnants and Pulsar Wind Nebulae, and show how these (beautiful) nebulae can reveal secrets of their powering engines (beasts), thus addressing debated questions related to their evolution, magnetic fields, energetics and supernova progenitors. I will conclude with emerging scientific questions driving new technology for future X-ray missions.
Host: Melania Nynka