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Electron Acceleration at PWN Termination Shocks: application to PSR B1259-63

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Giacche,  Simone
Division Prof. Dr. Werner Hofmann, MPI for Nuclear Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Kirk,  John G.
Division Prof. Dr. Werner Hofmann, MPI for Nuclear Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Giacche, S., & Kirk, J. G. (2017). Electron Acceleration at PWN Termination Shocks: application to PSR B1259-63. AIP Conference Proceedings, 1792: 040019. doi:10.1063/1.4968923.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0000-B303-2
Abstract
We investigate the effects on electron acceleration of an electromagnetically modified termination shock (TS) in pulsar wind nebulae (PWNe). The physics of the magnetized pulsar wind simulated in a two-fluid code with a magnetic shear wave which converts in superluminal waves when the plasma density is below a certain threshold. This condition can be met for example in binary systems hosting a PWN when the pulsar is far from periastron. The modification of the TS structure leads to energization of particles incoming with the wind, and a sizeable fraction of these arc reflected and therefore made available for further acceleration. Using a Monte Carlo code, we show that this subsequent acceleration process is remarkably similar to first-order Fermi acceleration at parallel, relativistic shocks. Applying this scenario to the bright GeV flare produced by PSR B1259-63 we find a value of the pair multiplicity in the wind in good agreement with previous estimates for this source.