Faint X‐Ray Structure in the Crab Pulsar Wind Nebula
The Astrophysical Journal
We report on a Chandra observation of the Crab Nebula that gives the first clear view of the faint boundary of the Crab's X-ray-emitting pulsar wind nebula. There is structure in all directions. Fingers, loops, bays, and the south pulsar jet all indicate that either filamentary material or the magnetic field is controlling the relativistic electrons. In general, spectra soften as distance from the pulsar increases but do not change rapidly along linear features. This is particularly true for the pulsar jet. The termination of the jet is abrupt; the east side is close to an [O III] optical filament, which may be blocking propagation on this side. We argue that linear features have ordered magnetic fields and that the structure is determined by the synchrotron lifetime of particles diffusing perpendicular and parallel to the magnetic field. We find no significant evidence for thermal X-rays inside the filamentary envelope.
Seward, F. D.; Tucker, W. H.; and Fesen, R. A., "Faint X‐Ray Structure in the Crab Pulsar Wind Nebula" (2006). Open Dartmouth: Faculty Open Access Articles. 2252.