Crab Nebula 'remnant' is electrically active
The Crab Nebula was recently (July 30) in the news.
From astronomy.com is this headline and excerpt:
Crab Nebula blasts Earth with highest-energy photons ever recorded
Astronomers using the Tibet AS-gamma Experiment have discovered the highest-energy light ever measured from an astrophysical source. Photons streaming from the Crab Nebula were recently measured at energies well over 100 tera-electronvolts (TeV). That’s a trillion electron volts, or some 10 times the maximum energy that the Large Hadron Collider sees when it slams particles together.
Scientists think the key is a pulsar lurking deep inside the heart of the Crab Nebula, the dense, rapidly spinning core left when a star exploded in a supernova almost a thousand years ago. Actually, since the nebula is located over 6,500 light-years away, the explosion occurred about 7,500 years ago, but the light from that explosion didn’t reach Earth until 1054 CE, when it exploded in our night skies as a bright new star, spotted by astronomers around the globe.
The supernova’s light faded after just weeks, but since then, the detritus has grown and spread, and it now glows wonderfully in the night sky at nearly every wavelength. It crackles in low-energy radio waves, blasts out high-energy gamma and x-rays, and shines at visible wavelengths in between.
Detritus certainly does not glow in every wavelength.
Attached is an image of the Crab Nebula spectrum. It is clearly synchrotron radiation covering the entire broad spectrum of wavelengths.
There are a number of emission lines so those molecules are above this core with its electric current bending in a magnetic field. Perhaps those molecules generating those few emission lines could be called detritus.
Argon hydride (ArH+), the notable discovery in the attached story, is probably not dust.
This is not the spectrum from dust.
link to spectrum story
link to astronomy.com news story
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