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By Steven N.Shore

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All three components, gas, cosmic rays, and magnetic fields, have approximately the same energy density, which happens to be also close to the energy density of the microwave background, about 1 eV/cm3 . The average density of the neutral hydrogen gas, of temperature a few 1010 K to a few 103 K, is about 1 partcile/cm3 , but highly clumped, in a disk of thickness about 100 pc (=3 × 1020 cm). The very hot gas extends much farther from the symmetry plane, about 2 kpc on either side. • Supernovae.

THE COSMIC RAYS BETWEEN 3 AND 50 EeV, THE EXPECTED GZK CUTOFF The cosmic rays between the ankle and the expected GZK cutoff are readily explained by many possible sources, almost all outside our Galaxy. Some, but not all of these proposals can also explain particles beyond the GZK cutoff, discussed in a separate section. P1: GNH/GTK P2: GLM Final Pages Encyclopedia of Physical Science and Technology EN003K-150 June 13, 2001 23:1 831 Cosmic Radiation FIGURE 3 The surviving fraction of 10 Be in data and a comparison with models of cosmic ray propagation.

Such questions have sometimes been distinguished from the structural questions of cosmology and said to be of a different order called cosmogony. We shall see that in scientific cosmology such a separation is artificial and unproductive. Indeed, all the questions posed in this section are, in all current scientific models, inextricably interrelated. B. Value of Some Early Questions All modern science is predicated on the philosophical assumption that its subject is comprehensible. Although even Albert Einstein remarked that this is the most incomprehensible thing about the universe, it is difficult to see how this can be a question for scientific debate.

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Encyclopaedia Of Popular Science & Technology - Astronomy by Steven N.Shore


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