AAS 204th Meeting, June 2004
Session 9 Clusters of Galaxies
Poster, Monday, May 31, 2004, 9:20am-6:30pm, Ballroom

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[9.06] Abell 13: The steepest spectrum radio relic

K.K. Dyer (NRAO)

Because we observe synchrotron emission in merging clusters of galaxies we know particle acceleration is taking place. However, the acceleration mechanism which boosts the intercluster medium to emitting energies is unknown; candidates include first-order Fermi shock acceleration, turbulence, and adabatic compression. Radio relic emission represents a chance to study the normally unobservable intercluster medium. I have used new low frequency capabilities of the VLA to observe these rapidly steepening sources where the spectrum is bright. I have observed Abell 13 at at several sets of scaled wavelengths to look for spectral index changes in relation to the morphology of the relic and the distribution of the colliding cluster members. Abell 13 also contains a ROSAT all sky survey ``bright'' source -- this source appears to be co-located with the radio relic and may be inverse-Compton upscattering of the synchrotron photons seen at radio wavelengths. Abell 13 is part of a larger survey of radio relics in merging clusters. The goal is to compare sensitive measurements of the radio spectrum to predictions by acceleration models.

KKD is supported by a National Science Foundation Astronomy and Astrophysics Postdoctoral Fellowship under award AST-0103879.

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The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: kdyer@nrao.edu

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