Probing Particle Diffusion around Two Nearby Pulsars with TeV Gamma-Ray Observations from HAWC
July 22, 2019
Nearby cosmic-ray accelerators, especially pulsar wind nebulae, are possible origins of the local multi-GeV positron excess. Pulsar Geminga and B0656+14, less than 300 pc from the Earth, have been postulated as the main sources of the positron excess. With one and half years of data, the HAWC gamma-ray observatory discovered very extended TeV gamma-ray structures produced from high-energy electrons and positrons around these two nearby middle-aged pulsars. Morphology studies suggest that the diffusion in the vicinity of these two pulsars is 100 times slower than the average in our Galaxy. This result provides important constraints on the origin of positron excess, but raises questions like why diffusion is so slow at high energies near these pulsars. With more than twice of data from the previous results, we now explore the possibility of energy-dependent diffusion at these sources.
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