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11th of October 2017
ATNF Colloquium
Order or disorder? What do the magnetic fields of supernova remnants look like?
by Jennifer West (University of Toronto)
Abstract. Supernova remnants are known to be important sites of cosmic ray acceleration. Magnetic fields are thought to play a key role in the acceleration mechanism, however, there are many outstanding questions about the geometry of the magnetic fields and the distribution of the cosmic ray electrons in these objects. I will present some of my work on modelling the radio synchrotron emission from supernova remnants. I will show how their magnetic fields may be connected to that of the Galaxy and how the field may evolve as the remnant ages. I will also present a new and unexpected result that suggests how a completely turbulent magnetic field could actually appear ordered. Finally, I will suggest some observational tests that can help unravel the mystery.

Image caption: Color-composite image of the young supernova remnant SN1006, including SUMSS radio (red), Chandra soft X-ray (green), and Chandra hard X-ray (purple).

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