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Cosmic rays and their interstellar medium environment

Cosmic rays and their interstellar medium environment

Start date: 27 Jun 2011
Address: Polytech Univeristé Montpellier II, Montpellier, France


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Cosmic rays are a major component of the interstellar medium. They share an equivalent energy density with the magnetic field and the interstellar gas. At low energies cosmic rays probably take an active part in the dynamics of the structures of the interstellar medium.

They contribute to its ionisation. They produce a force through their pressure gradient over the magnetised fluid. They generate plasma waves and magnetic turbulence. This turbulence has in turn a key role in the evolution of molecular gas and in the star formation cycle.

At high energies cosmic rays are identified by their interaction with the molecular gas and produce neutral and charged pions and secondary particles (gamma rays, electron-positron and potentially neutrinos).

Cosmic rays are also responsible for the spallation nucleosynthesis of light and stable and radioactive elements. Cosmic rays are likely produced during episodes of supernova explosion. A large fraction of these supernovae explode as a result of the collapse of the core of massive stars. Massive stars, their evolution and the way they shape their environment appear also to have a central role in the cosmic ray production.

Cosmic rays turn out to be a key ingredient in the local and global dynamics of the interstellar medium. But this is only very recently since this component started to be integrated in the modelling of the interstellar medium evolution.

The main objective of this international workshop is to contribute to a better account of the multiple effects of the energetic component of the interstellar medium.

Last Update: 1 September 2019
29-Nov-2022 01:43 UT

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