i'm sure andrew collins is liking this...
andrews articles concerning the cygnus mystery;
seeking the origins of cosmic rays
april 3, 2007by greg bryant and alan macrobert
where do cosmic rays come from? although they were first identified on a balloon flight in 1912, their sources have been hard to find. cosmic-ray particles are mostly protons, some helium nuclei, and a smattering of heavier nuclei. their flight paths are twisted and tangled by interstellar magnetic fields, so the directions from which we see them arriving tell nothing about where they began. only the very highest-energy cosmic-ray particles have enough momentum to fly across the galaxy in a nearly straight line, and these are extremely rare.
recently a slight, unexplained excess of cosmic rays — only 0.1% above the sky average — was identified coming from the direction of cygnus, according to a japanese-chinese team reporting last year science. cygnus is the direction forward along our local spiral arm of the milky way, suggesting that the arm has a magnetic field trapping cosmic rays within it to some slight degree. if the finding is confirmed (the cygnus high-energy excess might consist of gamma-ray photons instead), it may help astronomers deduce a cosmic-ray origin.
be well, be love.