September 28, 2022

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The origin of the most energetic particle in the galaxy has been discovered

Discover the starting point of the most energetic particle in our galaxy, the very high-energy cosmic rays. To produce it could have been a supernova explosion, a large star in the last stages of its existence, near the center of the Milky Way. A research group from the University of Wisconsin recognized him, thanks to data from the Fermi Space Telescope. the result is published In physical review letters.

Our galaxy is intermittently traversed by mobile particles driven by very high energies, so-called high-energy cosmic rays, and astrophysicists have been trying to understand their origin for decades. These particles, with energies 10 times higher than those produced by the largest artificial accelerators, such as CERN’s Large Hadron Collider (Lhc) in Geneva, and several indications are that the acceleration from extremely violent supernova explosions is driving them very fast. . However, it could not be ascertained.

“Theorists believe that the highest-energy cosmic ray protons in the Milky Way are up to one million billion electron volts, or PeV energies,” said Qi Fang of the University of Wisconsin in Madison. But the exact nature of their sources, which we call PeVatrons, has been difficult to determine. “Analysis of data collected by the Fermi Space Telescope has now allowed us to identify a possible source in a supernova remnant identified as G106.3 + 2.7, located about 2,600 light-years away from Earth. Earth. “Now, with the help of 12 years of Fermi data, we think – said Fang – we’ve shown that G106.3 + 2.7 is indeed a PeVatron,” Fang said.

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