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The origin of Galactic Cosmic Rays: theory vs observations

by Dr. Giovanni Morlino (INAF Osservatorio Astrofisico di Arcetri)

Feb 03, 2014 from 02:30 PM to 04:30 PM

Where IRA meeting room (via Gobetti, 4th floor)

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After one century from the discovery of cosmic rays by Victor Hess, the origin of these particle is still puzzling the astrophysical community. During the past forty years a complex theoretical picture has been built up, based on the idea that supernova remnants (SNRs) should be the main factories of Galactic cosmic rays. The key mechanism of this so called "supernova remnant paradigm" is the diffusive particle acceleration which occurs around shocks produced by the expansion of SNRs. In this talk we review the basic features of particle acceleration theory around shocks, with special attention to modification to the shock structure induced by the  back reaction of accelerated particles. Then we will focus on the observational predictions that the theory makes on the radiation emitted by SNRs with emphasis on X-ray, gamma-ray emission and optical Balmer emission. Finally we will compare these predictions with recent observations by the X-ray and gamma-ray satellites as well as with Cerenkov telescopes, showing how multi-wavelength spectra can be used to estimate the shock dynamical properties and the effciency of CR acceleration.

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