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Identifying Nearby Accelerators of Ultrahigh Energy Cosmic Rays Using Ultrahigh Energy (and Very High Energy) Photons

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Taylor,  Andrew
Division Prof. Dr. Werner Hofmann, MPI for Nuclear Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Hinton,  J. A.
Division Prof. Dr. Werner Hofmann, MPI for Nuclear Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Taylor, A., Hinton, J. A., Blasi, P., & Ave, M. (2009). Identifying Nearby Accelerators of Ultrahigh Energy Cosmic Rays Using Ultrahigh Energy (and Very High Energy) Photons. Physical Review Letters, 103(5): 051102, pp. 1-4. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.103.051102.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0011-74D3-3
Abstract
Ultrahigh energy photons (UHE, E>1019 eV) are inevitably produced during the propagation of ~1020 eV protons in extragalactic space. Their short interaction lengths (<20 Mpc) at these energies, combined with the impressive sensitivity of the Pierre Auger Observatory detector to these particles, makes them an ideal probe of nearby ultrahigh energy cosmic ray (UHECR) sources. We here discuss the particular case of photons from a single nearby (within 30 Mpc) source in light of the possibility that such an object might be responsible for several of the UHECR events published by the Auger collaboration. We demonstrate that the photon signal accompanying a cluster of a few >6×1019 eV UHECRs from such a source should be detectable by Auger in the near future. The detection of these photons would also be a signature of a light composition of the UHECRs from the nearby source.