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Extragalactic Gamma-Quanta


The Research of Extragalactic and Galactic Sources of Gamma-Quanta with Energy 1–100 TeV by Mirror Telescopes System Shalon

Tech Area / Field

  • SAT-AST/Astronomy/Space, Aircraft and Surface Transportation
  • PHY-PFA/Particles, Fields and Accelerator Physics/Physics

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
FIAN Lebedev, Russia, Moscow


  • Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe Technik und Umwelt / Institute für Kernphysik, Germany, Karlsruhe\nCollege de France / Physique Corpusculaire et Cosmologie, France, Paris\nUniversity of Lodz / Experimental Physics Department, Poland, Lodz\nUniversity of California / Department of Physics and Astronomy, USA, CA, Irvine\nUniversity of Tokyo / Institute for Cosmic Ray Research, Japan, Tokyo\nUniversita Degli Studi di Torino / Dipartamento di Fisica Generale, Italy, Torino\nUniversity of Michigan, USA, MI, Ann Arbor

Project summary

The offered project has an object to bring the contribution to the decision of fundamental scientific problems:

– sources of gamma - quanta very high energy;

– physical properties of TeV–PeV gamma-sources;
– problem of acceleration and distribution of cosmic rays;
– contribution of local gamma-sources to an observable spectrum of cosmic rays.

The formation of gamma-quanta with energy >1012 eV in Galaxy and Extragalaxy is mainly connected with not elastic collisions of space radiation with absent-minded in space by substance of protons and high energy nuclei. Accordingly the local sources of gamma-quanta is specifying area of cosmic rays acceleration. Among various methods of search of gamma-quanta from local sources most widespread is observation of Cherenkov radiation of electron-photon cascades generated in an atmosphere by very high energy gamma-quanta. Thus the orientation of Cherenkov radiation is determines a direction on a source, that is coordinate of an observable source. The first attempts of observation of very high energy gamma-quanta sources were carried out by Chudakov in 1960–62 yy. However authentic results of observation of sources of gamma-quanta with energy 1012 eV and flux less than 10-3m-2×hour-1 concern to last decade. Developed, created and functioning installation on Tien-Shan High-mountainous 3,338 m of Station of FIAN – the mirror telescopic system SHALON for registration of Cherenkov radiation with the angular resolution ~ 0.1° – allows to receive steady results on galactic and extragalactic sources of gamma-quanta in energy interval 1012–1014 eV. The efficiency of gamma-quanta observations at flux 10-12 cm-2×sec-1 is provided with a wide review angle of the telescope (> 8 °), that is determined by the 144 photo multipliers matrix area allowing to analyze extensive air showers on the area ~ 8×104 m2 around of a telescope. On Tien-Shan high-mountainous observatory of P.N. Lebedev Physical institute in Kazakhstan the perfection of gamma-astronomical observation is connected to editing of the second telescope SHALON. SHALON-2 will be put on distance 260 m from telescope SHALON-1, and the passage between gamma-telescopes (~ 104 m2) will be a subject of the three-dimensional analysis of development of the cascade in an atmosphere, which should differ at EAS, generated with the gamma-quanta and primary protons and nuclei. The stereo-observation of Cherenkov light essentially will improve the distinguish of gamma-quanta on a background of cosmic rays, down to the analysis of inpidual events.

With commissioning developed and made in Physical Institute SHALON-2 should register: synchronously with SHALON-1 cascades from a prospective source on the general area of the review; the direction of gamma-quantum arrival in both telescopes should coincide with a direction on a prospective source with accuracy ~ 0.1°; the distribution of Cherenkov light on matrixes of both telescopes should correspond to the electron-photon cascade from gamma-quantum of the certain energy and height of the cascade maximum.

The observable fluxes of gamma-quanta from found out galactic and extragalactic sources are approximately identical (is connected to sensitivity to sizes of flux of all best modern gamma-telescopes), that at distinction of distances up to them 104 times mean in 108 times large radiation ability of extragalactic objects. In view of limitation of number of sources in our Galaxy in comparison with Extragalaxy, it is possible to assume, that the cosmic rays with energy more than 1012 eV have, basically, extragalactic origin.


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