27 Highest Energy Cosmic Rays, Fired From Nearby Galaxy, Strike Earth


The Pierre Auger collaboration, an international project involving 370 scientists and engineers from 17 countries, announced late last year the significant discovery of 27 Ultra-High-Energy Cosmic Ray (UHECR) protons emitted from some unknown extragalactic sources located within 3 degrees of “active galactic nuclei” (AGNs) within about 250 million light-years of Earth. There was no explanation for the enormous energies of these relativistic protons or for the source of the protons’ energy.

The following theory may now explain the discovery: The Second Law of Thermodynamics required that the Big Bang, while creating the universe’s mass and energy, generate primarily relativistic protons in order to minimize the entropy of the universe at the beginning of time. From the generally accepted Big Bang temperatures, some proton energies might have been at energy levels between 1 million EeV to 10 million EeV. Over the subsequent 13.7 billion years the so-called GZK proton-energy-loss effect (explained later) could diminish these proton energies by a factor of 100,000, yet would still permit the arrival at Earth of a small percentage of 10 EeV to 100 EeV Ultra-High-Energy cosmic ray protons.

The author presents data and arguments that the recent Auger collaboration discovery of 60 EeV cosmic ray protons from sources “that lie within roughly 250 million light-years of Earth” probably represents these diminished Big Bang relativistic protons that were ejected from their long-term steady state orbital paths, around tens of spiral galaxies, by transient magnetic field distortions brought about by the merging of galaxy clusters.

The understanding and explanations for both the nature of the sources of the UHECR protons observed by the Auger collaboration and the extremely high energy levels of these UHECRs evolved from over five years of researching UHECRs and Relativistic-Proton dark matter by the author. That effort led to scientific books published in 2003 and 2006 and scientific papers posted on the physics arXiv in 2005 and 2007.

The University of Chicago news release contained the following four relevant quotations regarding the discovery of the Auger collaboration:

“The international Auger collaboration has traced the rain of high-energy cosmic rays [UHECRs] that continually pelts the Earth to the cores of nearby galaxies, which emit prodigious quantities of energy.”

“In the next few years, our data will permit us to identify the exact sources of these cosmic rays and how they accelerate these particles.”

“Cosmic rays – mostly protons – fly through the universe at nearly the speed of light. The most powerful cosmic rays contain more than one hundred million times more energy than the particles produced in the world’s most powerful particle accelerator.”

“Scientists have long considered Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN) to be possible sources of high-energy cosmic rays. And while they have now found a strong correlation between the two, exactly what accelerates cosmic rays to such extreme energies remains unknown.”

A Science magazine article by Adrian Cho contained the following four substantive quotations:

“The cosmic rays do not point precisely to the AGNs; presumably, our galaxy’s magnetic field deflects them in transit. Details of the analysis suggest that the cosmic rays are protons.”

“Physicists measure the energy of the highest energy rays in exa-electron volts EeV. The Auger team finds that rays with energies higher than 57 EeV- of which they see 27-generally come from directions within 3A° of “active galactic nuclei” (AGNs) that lie within roughly 250 million light-years of Earth.”

“Meanwhile, theorists have a puzzle to solve: Exactly how might an AGN accelerate a proton to such mind-boggling energies?”

Reflecting Alan Watson’s key comments, Adrian Cho wrote, “The results don’t prove AGNs are sources of the rays.” “Anything else that’s distributed on the sky in the same way as AGNs could be the source,” Alan Watson says. Watson added, “For example, galaxies tend to clump, so some other sort of galaxy might be the culprit.” (Alan Watson is a professor at the University of Leeds and co-founder of the Pierre Auger Observatory.)

Google News Comment by Dr. Paul M. Mantsch, Senior physicist at Fermilab and project manager of the Pierre Auger Project. A two paragraph article included the key sentence, “Although violent AGN are good candidates for sources, they might only be tracers for some other kind of sources nearby.”

“Then, on July 29, 2005, Elena Pierpaoli and Glennys Farrar posted a paper on the Physics arXiv, astro-ph/0507679 entitled, ‘Massive galaxy clusters and the origin of Ultra High Energy Cosmic Rays,’ in which the massive galaxy clusters are described as a merging pair of clusters. In their paper, Pierpaoli and Farrar suggest a possible explanation for the observed phenomenon as follows:”

“‘A merging pair of clusters would be expected to have very large scale, strong magnetic shocks which could be responsible for accelerating UHECR even if there is no AGN [active galactic nuclei] or GRB [gamma ray burst] associated with the galaxy clusters.'”

“Note that Pierpaoli and Farrar believe that lower-energy cosmic ray protons are accelerated into UHECRs through magnetic shocks created in the merging galaxy clusters.”

“Perhaps both research groups are correct in concluding that the UHECRs may have been accelerated. However, there is another possibility. During the pre-merger period, UHECRs, defined as having energies at or above 1 EeV (1 exa-electron volt), might have been orbiting galaxy clusters within their dark matter halos in a steady-state manner according to the Larmor Radius equation. Given the general size of galaxy clusters and the generally accepted magnitude range of the extragalactic magnetic field, one would conclude that most of the pre-merger orbiting protons in the dark matter halos around the galaxy clusters would be UHECRs.”

“The galaxy cluster merging process would upset the steady-state Larmor orbiting symmetry of the UHECRs. The combining of the magnetic fields of the two merging spiral galaxy clusters could create transient magnetic field distortions, which would cause a number of UHECRs to be deflected off into space, with some being Earthbound. This theory might be called the deflection-from-orbit theory of UHECR emission. It is presented as a plausible alternative theory to the shock acceleration UHECR theory, which remains unproven according to the two research groups.”

The Pierpaoli-Farrar paper indicates that the authors have found data about several UHECR events with energies at about 50 EeV departing from a merging pair of galaxy clusters observed in the SSDS DR3. In the 22 Nov 2005 (v3) abstract of the Pierpaoli-Farrar paper they say, “For cosmic rays with energies above 50 EeV the observed correlation is the strongest for angles of 1.2-1.6 degrees where it has a chance probability of about 0.1 percent.”

Also in the v3 version of the paper, the Discussion and Conclusions section says, “Therefore we conclude that the correlations between AGASA UHECR and galaxy clusters does not seem to be driven by the presence of BL Lac or AGN within the galaxy clusters.”

Presented in the previous three paragraphs are (1) Drexler’s posited deflection-from-orbit theory of UHECR emission (2) the theory’s brief description based upon the Relativistic-Proton dark matter hypothesis, and (3) its experimental basis derived from the Pierpaoli-Farrar astronomical data and their conclusions. The task left to complete is the positing of how the relativistic protons orbiting tens of galaxies obtained their energy levels above 50 EeV. The following logical steps should lead toward that result.

Let us now compare the probability of validity of Drexler’s Relativistic-Proton dark matter hypothesis to the probability of validity of the hypothesis that an AGN mechanism can accelerate protons to energies 100 million times higher than the most powerful particle accelerator on Earth. Before we proceed with that task, let us think about the Pierpaoli-Farrar researchers who in 2005 discovered UHECRs emanating from merging galaxy clusters which do no not exhibit AGNs.

If it required a black hole-AGN accelerator mechanism to create the UHECRs for the Auger collaboration discovery, what other accelerator mechanism was used by the merging galaxy clusters reported by Pierpaoli-Farrar, which did not possess AGNs? It is highly unlikely that two completely different accelerator mechanisms exist in the universe that could achieve the enormous proton accelerations described in the previous paragraph. In fact it is highly unlikely that any cosmological accelerator mechanism could achieve those proton accelerations except the Big Bang.

Drexler’s scientific books and papers explain that the Big Bang created relativistic protons having energies up to 10 million times higher than 1 EeV UHECRs of today in order for the Big Bang to satisfy the Second Law of Thermodynamics. See Drexler’s physics/0702132 and his Dec.15, 2003 book, which state that the Big Bang generated protons at 10 million EeV. Then over the following 13.7 billion years their energies could decline by the so-called GZK loss mechanism by a factor of 100,000 and still be at the 100 EeV UHECR energy level observed rarely on Earth these days.

It should be noted that the GZK proton-energy-loss effect pertains to energy losses from pion production by single protons interacting with Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) photons that limit cosmic ray travel of protons with energies of 60 EeV or more to 300 million light years. (Until recently, 163 million light years was used as the limit.) In that situation the effective CMB photon density far exceeds the proton density. However, when high-flow-level proton streams are orbiting spiral galaxies in the dark matter halos the outer layer protons can shield the inner proton flows from the CMB photons and from the GZK loss effect. This should occur when the effective proton density far exceeds the effective CMB photon density.

The deflection-from-orbit theory of UHECR emission, posited by Drexler above and in Chapter 47 of his May 2006 book, can be applied to the Auger collaboration discovery. Note that a corollary that emanates from the above presentation is that the Auger collaboration discovery itself may represent new and important evidence supporting the validity of the Relativistic-Proton Dark Matter theory.

The 2006 book, “Comprehending and Decoding the Cosmos” is now cataloged and available in over 40 astronomy or physics libraries around the world including libraries at Harvard, Stanford, Yale, UC Berkeley, UC Santa Cruz, Cornell, Harvard-Smithsonian, Vassar, and the universities of Hawaii, Toronto, Illinois, Edinburgh, Hamburg, Goettingen, Groningen, Copenhagen, Chile, Bologna, Helsinki, Lisbon, Guadalajara, and Kyoto, and the Max-Planck-Institut for Astrophysik.

See Also: Nobel Laureate Queries Point To Postmodern Dark Matter Theory, Big Bang

Jerome Drexler, inventor of the LaserCard optical memory card, worked at Bell Labs, was a research professor in physics at NJIT, and chief scientist of LaserCard Corp. Drexler is the author of four books on his discovery of the nature of dark matter, dark energy and “dark matter cosmology” of the universe.