Personal tools
Log in
You are here: Home Research Activities Relativistic and Particle Astrophysics The origin of cosmic rays and dark matter

The origin of cosmic rays and dark matter

The last three years have seen unprecedented developments in the field of the physics of cosmic rays, both from an observational and theoretical point of view. Observations made with the Cherenkov, MAGIC, VERITAS and HESS telescopes have led to the detection of high energy gamma-rays from supernova remnants, the most plausible sources of Galactic cosmic rays. From a theoretical point of view, recent years have seen the development of a non-linear theory for particle acceleration in supernova remnants, a crucial ingredient for the understanding of the origin of cosmic rays and to describe the multi-frequency observations of these sources.

Studies into the origin of cosmic rays have a long tradition in Italy and the Italian community continues to play an extremely important and active role today. This is illustrated not only by the number of scientists of various levels involved, for example, in the search for sources with the Fermi satellite or the operation of PAO, but also by the importance and resonance of the results achieved. INAF is also providing a key contribution to the hardware of the MAGIC-II telescope.

There have been two important developments in the last three years on the theoretical/phenomenological side: 1) the formalisation of a non-linear theory for particle acceleration in shock waves, 2) the development of the model of the dip for the transition of Galactic and extragalactic cosmic rays. Forthcoming years will be a golden period for the field of cosmic ray research given that the Fermi telescope and Cherenkov telescopes and ground-based detectors are already inundating the field with precious data. Italian groups have provided a fundamental contribution to this field, and will continue to investigate the many aspects that are still unclear, from the connection between supernova remnants and and cosmic rays observed from the Earth to the extension of studies of the interaction between cosmic rays and the region around the source. In this field, use is made of large structures such as KASCADE Grande, the Pierre Auger Observatory, MAGIC and Jem-EUSO.

Farewell to Giovanni Bignami

May 26, 2017

Farewell to Giovanni Bignami Great astrophysicist and former President of INAF and ASI, Bignami passed away suddenly while in Madrid where he was carrying out his research activities.

INAF researcher involved in the discovery of a millisecond pulsar

May 20, 2017

INAF researcher involved in the discovery of a millisecond pulsar An international team of astronomers led by Ivan Zolotukhin of the Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planétologie (IRAP) of Toulouse, also including Matteo Bachetti, a researcher of the INAF in Cagliari, has discovered that this pulsar is at the beginning of the recycle phase, i.e. the process that causes slow and "turned-off” neutron stars to turn on again as “millisecond pulsar”.

Cassini Scientist for a Day: the competition for young scientists sets new records

May 20, 2017

Cassini Scientist for a Day: the competition for young scientists sets new records New record numbers for the 15th edition of Cassini Scientist for a Day, the international competition launched by NASA and promoted in Europe by the European Space Agency (ESA), open to lower and upper secondary school students. In Italy, 181 students participated in the competition, sending a total of 81 essays to a panel of researchers and experts in science communication.