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Astron. Astrophys. 360, 671-682 (2000)

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A BeppoSAX and ROSAT view of the RCW86 supernova remnant

F. Bocchino 1,2, J. Vink 3, F. Favata 1, A. Maggio 2 and S. Sciortino 2

1 Astrophysics Division, Space Science Department of ESA, ESTEC, Postbus 299, 2200AG Noordwijk, The Netherlands
2 Osservatorio Astronomico di Palermo, Piazza del Parlamento 1, 90134 Palermo, Italy
3 Astrophysikalisches Institut Potsdam, An der Sternwarte 16, 14482 Potsdam, Germany

Received 23 December 1999 / Accepted 16 May 2000


We present a spectral analysis of the Northern and Southwestern rim of the RCW86 X-ray shell, pointing out the remarkable differences between these two parts of the same object. In the North, a single temperature Non Equilibrium of Ionization emission model describes the data well, and the derived abundances of O, Ne, Mg, Si, S, Ar and Fe are in agreement with expected metal depletion behind a fast shock moving in the interstellar medium. If the initial explosion energy was [FORMULA] erg, the derived distance and age are [FORMULA] kpc and [FORMULA] yr, fully consistent with the association to the historical supernova SN185. The X-ray emission from the SW is described by a two-temperature emission model with [FORMULA] keV and [FORMULA] keV. There is evidence of overabundant metals in the high-temperature component, thus indicating the presence of ejecta. In this case, a Type Ia SN is to be preferred over a more energetic Type II event, which would imply a more distant and older remnant fully in its Sedov phase.

Key words: stars: supernovae: individual: – ISM: individual objects: RCW86 – ISM: supernova remnants – X-rays: ISM

Send offprint requests to: F. Bocchino (fbocchin@astro.estec. esa.nl)

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© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 2000

Online publication: August 17, 2000