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Title: Explaining TeV cosmic-ray anisotropies with non-diffusive cosmic-ray propagation

Abstract

Constraining the behavior of cosmic ray data observed at Earth requires a precise understanding of how the cosmic rays propagate in the interstellar medium. The interstellar medium is not homogeneous; although turbulent magnetic fields dominate over large scales, small coherent regions of magnetic field exist on scales relevant to particle propagation in the nearby Galaxy. Guided propagation through a coherent field is significantly different from random particle diffusion and could be the explanation of spatial anisotropies in the observed cosmic rays. We present a Monte Carlo code to propagate cosmic particle through realistic magnetic field structures. We discuss the details of the model as well as some preliminary studies which indicate that coherent magnetic structures are important effects in local cosmic-ray propagation, increasing the flux of cosmic rays by over two orders of magnitude at anisotropic locations on the sky. Furthermore, the features induced by coherent magnetic structure could be the cause of the observed TeV cosmic-ray anisotropy.

Authors:
 [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [1]
  1. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1334145
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-15-27838
Journal ID: ISSN 1538-4357
Grant/Contract Number:
AC52-06NA25396
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
The Astrophysical Journal (Online)
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: The Astrophysical Journal (Online); Journal Volume: 822; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 1538-4357
Publisher:
Institute of Physics (IOP)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTRONOMY AND ASTROPHYSICS; astroparticle physics; cosmic rays; ISM: kinematics and dynamics; magnetic fields; turbulence

Citation Formats

Harding, James Patrick, Fryer, Chris Lee, and Mendel, Susan Marie. Explaining TeV cosmic-ray anisotropies with non-diffusive cosmic-ray propagation. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.3847/0004-637X/822/2/102.
Harding, James Patrick, Fryer, Chris Lee, & Mendel, Susan Marie. Explaining TeV cosmic-ray anisotropies with non-diffusive cosmic-ray propagation. United States. doi:10.3847/0004-637X/822/2/102.
Harding, James Patrick, Fryer, Chris Lee, and Mendel, Susan Marie. 2016. "Explaining TeV cosmic-ray anisotropies with non-diffusive cosmic-ray propagation". United States. doi:10.3847/0004-637X/822/2/102. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1334145.
@article{osti_1334145,
title = {Explaining TeV cosmic-ray anisotropies with non-diffusive cosmic-ray propagation},
author = {Harding, James Patrick and Fryer, Chris Lee and Mendel, Susan Marie},
abstractNote = {Constraining the behavior of cosmic ray data observed at Earth requires a precise understanding of how the cosmic rays propagate in the interstellar medium. The interstellar medium is not homogeneous; although turbulent magnetic fields dominate over large scales, small coherent regions of magnetic field exist on scales relevant to particle propagation in the nearby Galaxy. Guided propagation through a coherent field is significantly different from random particle diffusion and could be the explanation of spatial anisotropies in the observed cosmic rays. We present a Monte Carlo code to propagate cosmic particle through realistic magnetic field structures. We discuss the details of the model as well as some preliminary studies which indicate that coherent magnetic structures are important effects in local cosmic-ray propagation, increasing the flux of cosmic rays by over two orders of magnitude at anisotropic locations on the sky. Furthermore, the features induced by coherent magnetic structure could be the cause of the observed TeV cosmic-ray anisotropy.},
doi = {10.3847/0004-637X/822/2/102},
journal = {The Astrophysical Journal (Online)},
number = 2,
volume = 822,
place = {United States},
year = 2016,
month = 5
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
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Citation Metrics:
Cited by: 2works
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  • Constraining the behavior of cosmic ray data observed at Earth requires a precise understanding of how the cosmic rays propagate in the interstellar medium. The interstellar medium is not homogeneous; although turbulent magnetic fields dominate over large scales, small coherent regions of magnetic field exist on scales relevant to particle propagation in the nearby Galaxy. Guided propagation through a coherent field is significantly different from random particle diffusion and could be the explanation of spatial anisotropies in the observed cosmic rays. We present a Monte Carlo code to propagate cosmic particle through realistic magnetic field structures. We discuss the detailsmore » of the model as well as some preliminary studies which indicate that coherent magnetic structures are important effects in local cosmic-ray propagation, increasing the flux of cosmic rays by over two orders of magnitude at anisotropic locations on the sky. The features induced by coherent magnetic structure could be the cause of the observed TeV cosmic-ray anisotropy.« less
  • In this paper we investigate the effect of stochasticity in the spatial and temporal distribution of supernova remnants on the spectrum and chemical composition of cosmic rays observed at Earth. The calculations are carried out for different choices of the diffusion coefficient D(E) experienced by cosmic rays during propagation in the Galaxy. In particular, at high energies we assume that D(E)∝E{sup δ}, with δ = 1/3 and δ = 0.6 being the reference scenarios. The large scale distribution of supernova remnants in the Galaxy is modeled following the distribution of pulsars, with and without accounting for the spiral structure ofmore » the Galaxy. We find that the stochastic fluctuations induced by the spatial and temporal distribution of supernovae, together with the effect of spallation of nuclei, lead to mild but sensible violations of the simple, leaky-box-inspired rule that the spectrum observed at Earth is N(E)∝E{sup −α} with α = γ+δ, where γ is the slope of the cosmic ray injection spectrum at the sources. Spallation of nuclei, even with the small rates appropriate for He, may account for small differences in spectral slopes between different nuclei, possibly providing an explanation for the recent CREAM observations. For δ = 1/3 we find that the slope of the proton and helium spectra are ∼ 2.67 and ∼ 2.6 respectively (with fluctuations depending on the realization of source distribution) at energies around ∼ 1 TeV (to be compared with the measured values of 2.66±0.02 and 2.58±0.02). For δ = 0.6 the hardening of the He spectra is not observed. The stochastic effects discussed above cannot be found in ordinary propagation calculations, such as GALPROP, where these effects and the point like nature of the sources are not taken into account. We also comment on the effect of time dependence of the escape of cosmic rays from supernova remnants, and of a possible clustering of the sources in superbubbles. In a second paper we will discuss the implications of these different scenarios for the anisotropy of cosmic rays.« less
  • In this paper we investigate the effects of stochasticity in the spatial and temporal distribution of supernova remnants on the anisotropy of cosmic rays observed at Earth. The calculations are carried out for different choices of the diffusion coefficient D(E) experienced by cosmic rays during propagation in the Galaxy. The propagation and spallation of nuclei (with charge 1 ≤ Z ≤ 26) are taken into account. At high energies (E > 1 TeV) we assume that D(E)∝(E/Z){sup δ}, with δ = 1/3 and δ = 0.6 being the reference scenarios. The large scale distribution of supernova remnants in the Galaxymore » is modeled following the distribution of pulsars with and without accounting for the spiral structure of the Galaxy. Our calculations allow us to determine the contribution to anisotropy resulting from both the large scale distribution of SNRs in the Galaxy and the random distribution of the nearest remnants. The naive expectation that the anisotropy amplitude scales as δ{sub A}∝D(E) is shown to be a wild oversimplification of reality which does not reflect in the predicted anisotropy for any realistic distribution of the sources. The fluctuations in the anisotropy pattern are dominated by nearby sources, so that predicting or explaining the observed anisotropy amplitude and phase becomes close to impossible. Nevertheless, the results of our calculations, when compared to the data, allow us to draw interesting conclusions in terms of the propagation scenario to be preferred both in terms of the energy dependence of the diffusion coefficient and of the size of the halo. We find that the very weak energy dependence of the anisotropy amplitude below 10{sup 5} GeV, as observed by numerous experiments, as well as the rise at higher energies, can best be explained if the diffusion coefficient is D(E)∝E{sup 1/3}. Faster diffusion, for instance with δ = 0.6, leads in general to an exceedingly large anisotropy amplitude. The spiral structure introduces interesting trends in the energy dependence of the anisotropy pattern, which qualitatively reflect the trend seen in the data. The inhomogeneous spatial distribution of the sources in the Galactic disc induces a large scale anisotropy which is not sensitive to the stochastic nature of nearby SNRs: we find that this additional contribution to δ{sub A} becomes more important for large values of the size of the halo, H. The two terms are comparable in size for H ∼ 2 kpc which corresponds to the scale height of the gradient of the spatial distribution of SNRs in the Galaxy. The dependence on energy of δ{sub A}(E) is close to monotonic when the large-scale, regular term dominates, and does not seem to reflect the observed anisotropy amplitude. Both contributions to the total anisotropy are illustrated and discussed with the help of semi-analytical results.« less