Astrophysics (Index)About

cosmic rays

(CR)
(very-high-energy particles from beyond the solar system)

Cosmic rays are high energy particles, typically with energies distributed around 0.3 GeV (4.8 × 10-11 joule), but the highest energy have been up to 3 × 1011 GeV. The term cosmic ray was coined when detectors were developed that demonstrate they continually fall on Earth, and the term traditionally meant both photons and particles such as atomic nuclei. However, common astrophysics usage has come to use EMR terminology for such photons, and reserve the term cosmic ray for other particles: electrons, protons and heavier nuclei. They are theorized to be formed largely by supernovae. Cosmic rays are continually arriving, i.e., as the cosmic ray background (CRB), but that phrase is not commonly used perhaps because all known cosmic rays fit that description.

Some classes of cosmic-ray particles by kinetic energy:

A famous graph, the Swordy plot demonstrates that cosmic rays occur basically with a power law spectrum over a wide range.

Cosmic ray astronomy makes use of space-based observatories such as INTEGRAL, and ground detectors such as LOPES, and Milagro.


(astrophysics,particles)
Further reading:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosmic_rays
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultra-high-energy_cosmic_ray
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extragalactic_cosmic_ray
http://physics.stackexchange.com/questions/112966/is-it-known-what-causes-the-knee-in-the-observed-cosmic-ray-spectrum

Referenced by pages:
Advanced Composition Explorer (ACE)
anomalous cosmic rays (ACR)
airglow
air shower
alpha particle
antimatter
ARGO-YBJ Experiment
black hole (BH)
cosmic background radiation (CBR)
Cherenkov detector
electrostatic barrier
electron volt (eV)
Fenton Hill Observatory (FHO)
gamma rays (GR)
GZK limit
high-energy astrophysics (HEA)
ionizing radiation
lithium (Li)
LOPES
Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO)
multi-messenger astronomy
neutron scattering
neutron spectrometer
nucleosynthesis
Orbiting Wide-angle Light Collectors (OWL)
PAMELA
power law
radioactive dating
relativistic astrophysics
Ulysses
Van Allen belts
VHE
weathering

Index