A dynamical model for the evolution of a pulsar wind nebula inside a nonradiative supernova remnant

Joseph (Yosi) Gelfand, Patrick O. Slane, Weiqun Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

A pulsar wind nebula (PWN) inside a supernova remnant provides a unique insight into the properties of the central neutron star, the relativistic wind powered by its loss of rotational energy, its progenitor supernova, and the surrounding environment. In this paper, we present a new semianalytic model for the evolution of such a PWN throughout its lifetime. This model couples the dynamical and radiative evolution of the PWNe, and predicts both the dynamical (e.g., radius and expansion velocity) and radiative (radio to TeV γ-ray spectrum) properties of the PWN during this period. As a result, it is well suited for using the observed properties of a PWN to constrain the physical characteristics of the neutron star, pulsar wind, progenitor supernova, and surrounding environment. We also discuss the expected evolution for a particular set of these parameters, and show that it reproduces the large spectral break inferred from the radio and X-ray spectrum of many young PWNe, and the low break frequency, low radio luminosity, high TeV γ-ray luminosity, and high magnetization observed for several older PWNe. The predicted spectrum of this PWN also contains spectral features which appear during different evolutionary phases detectable with new radio and γ-ray observing facilities such as the Extended Very Large Array and the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. Finally, this model has implications for determining if PWNe can inject a sufficient number of energetic electrons and positrons into their surroundings to explain the recent measurements of the cosmic-ray positron fraction by PAMELA and the cosmic-ray lepton spectrum by ATIC and HESS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2051-2067
Number of pages17
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume703
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2009

Fingerprint

supernova remnants
nebulae
pulsars
radio
rays
cosmic ray
neutron stars
supernovae
cosmic rays
positrons
luminosity
Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope
Very Large Array (VLA)
magnetization
leptons
energetics
low frequencies
electron
life (durability)
radii

Keywords

  • Pulsars: general
  • Supernova remnants

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics

Cite this

A dynamical model for the evolution of a pulsar wind nebula inside a nonradiative supernova remnant. / Gelfand, Joseph (Yosi); Slane, Patrick O.; Zhang, Weiqun.

In: Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 703, No. 2, 01.01.2009, p. 2051-2067.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{06953e42719c4e3cbc57789dcd1eeefc,
title = "A dynamical model for the evolution of a pulsar wind nebula inside a nonradiative supernova remnant",
abstract = "A pulsar wind nebula (PWN) inside a supernova remnant provides a unique insight into the properties of the central neutron star, the relativistic wind powered by its loss of rotational energy, its progenitor supernova, and the surrounding environment. In this paper, we present a new semianalytic model for the evolution of such a PWN throughout its lifetime. This model couples the dynamical and radiative evolution of the PWNe, and predicts both the dynamical (e.g., radius and expansion velocity) and radiative (radio to TeV γ-ray spectrum) properties of the PWN during this period. As a result, it is well suited for using the observed properties of a PWN to constrain the physical characteristics of the neutron star, pulsar wind, progenitor supernova, and surrounding environment. We also discuss the expected evolution for a particular set of these parameters, and show that it reproduces the large spectral break inferred from the radio and X-ray spectrum of many young PWNe, and the low break frequency, low radio luminosity, high TeV γ-ray luminosity, and high magnetization observed for several older PWNe. The predicted spectrum of this PWN also contains spectral features which appear during different evolutionary phases detectable with new radio and γ-ray observing facilities such as the Extended Very Large Array and the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. Finally, this model has implications for determining if PWNe can inject a sufficient number of energetic electrons and positrons into their surroundings to explain the recent measurements of the cosmic-ray positron fraction by PAMELA and the cosmic-ray lepton spectrum by ATIC and HESS.",
keywords = "Pulsars: general, Supernova remnants",
author = "Gelfand, {Joseph (Yosi)} and Slane, {Patrick O.} and Weiqun Zhang",
year = "2009",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1088/0004-637X/703/2/2051",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "703",
pages = "2051--2067",
journal = "Astrophysical Journal",
issn = "0004-637X",
publisher = "IOP Publishing Ltd.",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - A dynamical model for the evolution of a pulsar wind nebula inside a nonradiative supernova remnant

AU - Gelfand, Joseph (Yosi)

AU - Slane, Patrick O.

AU - Zhang, Weiqun

PY - 2009/1/1

Y1 - 2009/1/1

N2 - A pulsar wind nebula (PWN) inside a supernova remnant provides a unique insight into the properties of the central neutron star, the relativistic wind powered by its loss of rotational energy, its progenitor supernova, and the surrounding environment. In this paper, we present a new semianalytic model for the evolution of such a PWN throughout its lifetime. This model couples the dynamical and radiative evolution of the PWNe, and predicts both the dynamical (e.g., radius and expansion velocity) and radiative (radio to TeV γ-ray spectrum) properties of the PWN during this period. As a result, it is well suited for using the observed properties of a PWN to constrain the physical characteristics of the neutron star, pulsar wind, progenitor supernova, and surrounding environment. We also discuss the expected evolution for a particular set of these parameters, and show that it reproduces the large spectral break inferred from the radio and X-ray spectrum of many young PWNe, and the low break frequency, low radio luminosity, high TeV γ-ray luminosity, and high magnetization observed for several older PWNe. The predicted spectrum of this PWN also contains spectral features which appear during different evolutionary phases detectable with new radio and γ-ray observing facilities such as the Extended Very Large Array and the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. Finally, this model has implications for determining if PWNe can inject a sufficient number of energetic electrons and positrons into their surroundings to explain the recent measurements of the cosmic-ray positron fraction by PAMELA and the cosmic-ray lepton spectrum by ATIC and HESS.

AB - A pulsar wind nebula (PWN) inside a supernova remnant provides a unique insight into the properties of the central neutron star, the relativistic wind powered by its loss of rotational energy, its progenitor supernova, and the surrounding environment. In this paper, we present a new semianalytic model for the evolution of such a PWN throughout its lifetime. This model couples the dynamical and radiative evolution of the PWNe, and predicts both the dynamical (e.g., radius and expansion velocity) and radiative (radio to TeV γ-ray spectrum) properties of the PWN during this period. As a result, it is well suited for using the observed properties of a PWN to constrain the physical characteristics of the neutron star, pulsar wind, progenitor supernova, and surrounding environment. We also discuss the expected evolution for a particular set of these parameters, and show that it reproduces the large spectral break inferred from the radio and X-ray spectrum of many young PWNe, and the low break frequency, low radio luminosity, high TeV γ-ray luminosity, and high magnetization observed for several older PWNe. The predicted spectrum of this PWN also contains spectral features which appear during different evolutionary phases detectable with new radio and γ-ray observing facilities such as the Extended Very Large Array and the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. Finally, this model has implications for determining if PWNe can inject a sufficient number of energetic electrons and positrons into their surroundings to explain the recent measurements of the cosmic-ray positron fraction by PAMELA and the cosmic-ray lepton spectrum by ATIC and HESS.

KW - Pulsars: general

KW - Supernova remnants

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=70549088104&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=70549088104&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1088/0004-637X/703/2/2051

DO - 10.1088/0004-637X/703/2/2051

M3 - Article

VL - 703

SP - 2051

EP - 2067

JO - Astrophysical Journal

JF - Astrophysical Journal

SN - 0004-637X

IS - 2

ER -