Faculty Research at Morehead State University


A Morphological Study of the Supernova Remnant RX J0852.0-4622

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We conduct a multiwavelength morphological study of the Galactic supernova remnant (SNR) RX J0852.0–4622 (also known as Vela Jr., Vela Z, and G266.2−1.2). RX J0852.0–4622 is coincident with the edge of the larger Vela SNR causing confusion in the attribution of some filamentary structures to either RX J0852.0–4622 or its larger sibling. We find that the RX J0852.0–4622 radio-continuum emission can be characterized by a two-dimensional shell with a radius of 0°.90 ± 0°.01 (or 11.8 ± 0.6 pc at an assumed distance of 750 pc) centered at (l, b) = (133°. 08 ± 0°.01,−46°. 34 ± 0°.01) (or R.A. = 8h 52m19 2, decl. = −46°20′24 0, J2000), consistent with X-ray and gamma-ray emission. Although [O III] emission features are generally associated with the Vela SNR, one particular [O III] emission feature, which we denote as “the Vela Claw,” morphologically matches a molecular clump that is thought to have been stripped by the stellar progenitor of the RX J0852.0–4622 SNR. We argue that the Vela Claw feature is possibly associated with RX J0852.0–4622. Toward the northwestern edge of RX J0852.0–4622 , we find a flattening of the radio spectral index toward another molecular clump also thought to be associated with RX J0852.0–4622 . It is currently unclear whether this feature and the Vela Claw result from interactions between the RX J0852.0–4622 shock and interstellar medium gas.