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Astron. Astrophys. 328, 628-633 (1997)

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X-ray spectroscopy of the supernova remnant RCW 86

A new challenge for modeling the emission from supernova remnants

Jacco Vink , Jelle S. Kaastra and Johan A.M. Bleeker

Space Research Organization Netherlands, Sorbonnelaan 2, 3584 CA Utrecht, The Netherlands

Received 4 July 1997 / Accepted 20 August 1997

Abstract

We present an analysis of ASCA X-ray data of SNR RCW 86. There appears to be a remarkable spectral variation over the remnant, indicating temperatures varying from 0.8 keV to [FORMULA] keV. We have fitted these spectra with non-equilibrium ionization models and found that all regions are best fitted by emission from a hot plasma underabundant in metals ([FORMULA] solar), but in some cases fluorescent emission indicates overabundances of Ar and Fe. The ionization stage of the metals appears to be far from equilibrium, at some spots as low as [FORMULA] (m-3 s) [FORMULA]. We discuss the physical reality of the abundances and suggest an electron distribution with a supra-thermal tail to alleviate the strong depletion factors observed. We argue that RCW 86 is the result of a cavity explosion.

Key words: atomic processes – ISM: abundances – ISM: individual objects: RCW 86 – ISM: supernova remnants – X-rays: ISM

Send offprint requests to: J. Vink (@sron.ruu.nl)

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© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1997

Online publication: March 26, 1998

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