NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2006A-0556

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Proposal Information for 2006A-0556


PI: P. Frank Winkler, Middlebury College, winkler@middlebury.edu
Address: Department of Physics, Bicentennial Hall, Middlebury, VT 05753, USA

CoI: Knox S. Long, STScI
CoI: Possible undergrad student, Middlebury College

Title: Measuring Proper Motions in Young Supernova Remnants

Abstract: We propose to study the kinematics of ejecta from core-collapse supernovae, along with the interaction (or lack thereof) between the ejecta and the ISM, through measuring proper motions of filaments in the young galactic supernova remnants (SNRs) Puppis A and G292.0+1.8. In both cases we have data from epochs back to 1989 and 1991, respectively, with which to compare the new images. Both these remnants have fast- moving filaments similar to those in Cas A, composed almost entirely of heavy elements with little or no hydrogen. These are ``bullets'' of ejecta which have not yet been contaminated or decelerated through encounters with more mundane interstellar material, so by studying them we get a glimpse of the kinematics and possible asymmetry of the supernova itself. Neither Puppis A nor G292 have been studied nearly as extensively as Cas A; the only proper motions for Puppis A were carried out over a shorter time interval using photographic plates, while no proper motions have ever even been reported at all in G292. A successful measurement will, when combined with spectroscopic data in hand, lead also to a kinematic determination of the age and distance to this, the least studied of the O-rich SNRs. We also plan to extend our recent measurement of proper motions in the SN 1006 remnant to a longer baseline and fainter filaments with imaging at a significant epoch-one that will mark 1000th anniversary of SN 1006.


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