EDP Sciences
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Volume 380, Number 1, December II 2001
Page(s) 309 - 317
Section Diffuse matter in space
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20011437

A&A 380, 309-317 (2001)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20011437

Pulsar wind nebulae in supernova remnants

Spherically symmetric hydrodynamical simulations
E. van der Swaluw1, 2, A. Achterberg1, Y. A. Gallant1, 3, 4 and G. Tóth5

1  Astronomical Institute, Utrecht University, PO Box 80000, 3508 TA Utrecht, The Netherlands
2  Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, 5 Merrion Square, Dublin 2, Republic of Ireland
3  Osservatorio Astrofisico di Arcetri, Largo E. Fermi 5, 50125 Firenze, Italy
4  Service d'Astrophysique, CEA Saclay, 91191 Gif-sur-Yvette Cedex, France
5  Department of Atomic Physics, Pázmány Péter sétány 1, 1117 Budapest, Hungary

(Received 19 December 2000 / Accepted 27 September 2001)

A spherically symmetric model is presented for the interaction of a pulsar wind with the associated supernova remnant. This results in a pulsar wind nebula whose evolution is coupled to the evolution of the surrounding supernova remnant. This evolution can be divided in three stages. The first stage is characterised by a supersonic expansion of the pulsar wind nebula into the freely expanding ejecta of the progenitor star. In the next stage the pulsar wind nebula is not steady; the pulsar wind nebula oscillates between contraction and expansion due to interaction with the reverse shock of the supernova remnant: reverberations which propagate forward and backward in the remnant. After the reverberations of the reverse shock have almost completely vanished and the supernova remnant has relaxed to a Sedov solution, the expansion of the pulsar wind nebula proceeds subsonically. In this paper we present results from hydrodynamical simulations of a pulsar wind nebula through all these stages in its evolution. The simulations were carried out with the Versatile Advection Code.

Key words: ISM: supernova remnants -- stars: pulsars: general -- hydrodynamics -- shock waves

Offprint request: E. van der Swaluw, swaluw@cp.dias.ie

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