Publications by Tony Bell

From cosmic ray source to the galactic pool

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 437 (2014) 2802-2805

KM Schure, AR Bell

The Galactic cosmic ray spectrum is a remarkably straight power law. Our current understanding is that the dominant sources that accelerate cosmic rays up to the knee (3 × 1015 eV) or perhaps even the ankle (3 × 1018 eV), are young Galactic supernova remnants. In theory, however, there are various reasons why the spectrum may be different for different sources, and may not even be a power law if non-linear shock acceleration applies during the most efficient stages of acceleration.We show how the spectrum at the accelerator translates to the spectrum that makes up the escaping cosmic rays that replenish the Galactic pool of cosmic rays. We assume that cosmic ray confinement, and thus escape, is linked to the level of magnetic field amplification, and that the magnetic field is amplified by streaming cosmic rays according to the non-resonant hybrid or resonant instability. When a fixed fraction of the energy is transferred to cosmic rays, it turns out that a source spectrum that is flatter than E-2 will result in an E-2 escape spectrum, whereas a steeper source spectrum will result in an escape spectrum with equal steepening. This alleviates some of the concern that may arise from expected flat or concave cosmic ray spectra associated with non-linear shock modification. © 2013 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society.

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