Astrophys. J., 845, 24-24 (2017/August-2)
Preliminary evidence for a virial shock around the Coma galaxy cluster.
KESHET U., KUSHNIR D., LOEB A. and WAXMAN E.
Abstract (from CDS):
Galaxy clusters, the largest gravitationally bound objects in the universe, are thought to grow by accreting mass from their surroundings through large-scale virial shocks. Due to electron acceleration in such a shock, it should appear as a γ-ray, hard X-ray, and radio ring, elongated toward the large-scale filaments feeding the cluster, coincident with a cutoff in the thermal Sunyaev-Zel'dovich (SZ) signal. However, no such signature was found until now, and the very existence of cluster virial shocks has remained a theory. We find preliminary evidence for a large γ-ray ring of ∼5 Mpc minor axis around the Coma cluster, elongated toward the large-scale filament connecting Coma and Abell 1367, detected at the nominal 2.7σ confidence level (5.1σ using control signal simulations). The γ-ray ring correlates both with a synchrotron signal and with the SZ cutoff, but not with Galactic tracers. The γ-ray and radio signatures agree with analytic and numerical predictions if the shock deposits ∼1 % of the thermal energy in relativistic electrons over a Hubble time and ∼1 % in magnetic fields. The implied inverse Compton and synchrotron cumulative emission from similar shocks can contribute significantly to the diffuse extragalactic γ-ray and low-frequency radio backgrounds. Our results, if confirmed, reveal the prolate structure of the hot gas in Coma, the feeding pattern of the cluster, and properties of the surrounding large-scale voids and filaments. The anticipated detection of such shocks around other clusters would provide a powerful new cosmological probe.
© 2017. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
galaxies: clusters: individual: Coma cluster - gamma rays: galaxies: clusters - large-scale structure of universe - shock waves - shock waves
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