NASA – GSFC
|Title (1st Abstract)||
The Northern Rims of SNR RCW 86 – Chandra's Recent Observations and their Implications for Particle Acceleration
4. Magnetic fields in SNRs and PWNe
The Chandra observations towards the northwest (NW) and northeast (NE) rims of supernova remnant (SNR) RCW 86 reveal great detail about the characteristics of the shocks, particle acceleration and the local environments in these 2 distinct regions. Both the NW and NE of RCW 86 show clear evidence of non-thermal X-ray emission, identified as synchrotron radiation from shock-accelerated electrons with TeV energies, interacting with the compressed, and probably amplified, local magnetic field. Magnetic field amplification (MFA) is broadly believed to result from, and contribute to, cosmic ray acceleration at the shocks of SNRs. However, we still lack a detailed understanding of the particle acceleration mechanism, and with this study we address the connection between the shock properties and ambient medium with MFA. The Chandra observations of RCW 86 allowed us to constrain the magnitude of the post-shock magnetic field in the NE and NW rims by deriving synchrotron filament widths, and also the densities in these regions, using thermal emission co-located with the non-thermal rims. I will discuss our analysis in detail and comment on how MFA appears to be related to certain characteristics of the SNR shock.