Insights into cosmic-ray acceleration from the study of anomalous cosmic rays

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Cosmic rays from many sources and in many locations exhibit similar, inverse-power-law energy spectra, which suggests a common origin for most cosmic rays. Diffusive shock acceleration appears at present to be this common accelerator. Hence, anomalous cosmic rays, thought to be accelerated at the solar-wind termination shock, provide a relatively accessible laboratory for the study of the mechanism of cosmic-ray acceleration. Observations showing a transition from singly-charged anomalous cosmic-ray oxygen to multiply-charged at an energy of some 250 MeV support the picture of acceleration at the quasi-perpendicular termination shock. Such acceleration may be important in other sources, as well. The basic physics of this acceleration process is discussed in some detail.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-178
Number of pages18
JournalSpace Science Reviews
Volume86
Issue number1-4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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