Radio relics and magnetic fields in galaxy clusters

Botteon, Andrea (2015) Radio relics and magnetic fields in galaxy clusters. [Laurea magistrale], Università di Bologna, Corso di Studio in Astrofisica e cosmologia [LM-DM270]
Documenti full-text disponibili:
Documento PDF
Download (7MB) | Anteprima


Radio relics are diffuse synchrotron sources generally located in the peripheries of galaxy clusters in merging state. According to the current leading scenario, relics trace gigantic cosmological shock waves that cross the intra-cluster medium where particle acceleration occurs. The relic/shock connection is supported by several observational facts, including the spatial coincidence between relics and shocks found in the X-rays. Under the assumptions that particles are accelerated at the shock front and are subsequently deposited and then age downstream of the shock, Markevitch et al. (2005) proposed a method to constrain the magnetic field strength in radio relics. Measuring the thickness of radio relics at different frequencies allows to derive combined constraints on the velocity of the downstream flow and on the magnetic field, which in turns determines particle aging. We elaborate this idea to infer first constraints on magnetic fields in cluster outskirts. We consider three models of particle aging and develop a geometric model to take into account the contribution to the relic transverse size due to the projection of the shock-surface on the plane of the sky. We selected three well studied radio relics in the clusters A 521, CIZA J2242.8+5301 and 1RXS J0603.3+4214. These relics have been chosen primarily because they are almost seen edge-on and because the Mach number of the shock that is associated with these relics is measured by X-ray observations, thus allowing to break the degeneracy between magnetic field and downstream velocity in the method. For the first two clusters, our method is consistent with a pure radiative aging model allowing us to derive constraints on the relics magnetic field strength. In the case of 1RXS J0603.3+4214 we find that particle life-times are consistent with a pure radiative aging model under some conditions, however we also collect evidences for downstream particle re-acceleration in the relic W-region and for a magnetic field decaying downstream in its E-region. Our estimates of the magnetic field strength in the relics in A 521 and CIZA J2242.8+5301 provide unique information on the field properties in cluster outskirts. The constraints derived for these relics, together with the lower limits to the magnetic field that we derived from the lack of inverse Compton X-ray emission from the sources, have been combined with the constraints from Faraday rotation studies of the Coma cluster. Overall results suggest that the spatial profile of the magnetic field energy density is broader than that of the thermal gas, implying that the ε_th /ε_B ratio decreases with cluster radius. Alternatively, radio relics could trace dynamically active regions where the magnetic field strength is biased high with respect to the average value in the cluster volume.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di laurea (Laurea magistrale)
Autore della tesi
Botteon, Andrea
Relatore della tesi
Correlatore della tesi
Corso di studio
Ordinamento Cds
Parole chiave
galaxy clusters; magnetic fields; radio relics; non-thermal phenomena
Data di discussione della Tesi
17 Luglio 2015

Altri metadati

Statistica sui download

Gestione del documento: Visualizza il documento