Dust in the bright supernova remnant N49 in the LMC

Otsuka, M., van Loon, J. Th., Long, K. S., Meixner, M., Matsuura, M., Reach, W. T., Roman-Duval, J., Gordon, K., Sauvage, M., Hony, S., Misselt, K., Engelbracht, C., Panuzzo, P., Okumura, K., Woods, P. M., Kemper, F., & Sloan, G. C.
2010, Astronomy and Astrophysics, 518, L139


We investigate the dust associated with the supernova remnant (SNR) N49 in the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) as observed with the Herschel Space Observatory. N49 is unusually bright because of an interaction with a molecular cloud along its eastern edge. We have used PACS and SPIRE to measure the far IR flux densities of the entire SNR and of a bright region on the eastern edge of the SNR where the SNR shock is encountering the molecular cloud. Using these fluxes supplemented with archival data at shorter wavelengths, we estimate the dust mass associated with N49 to be about 10 M⊙. The bulk of the dust in our simple two-component model has a temperature of 20-30 K, similar to that of nearby molecular clouds. Unfortunately, as a result of the limited angular resolution of Herschel at the wavelengths sampled with SPIRE, the uncertainties are fairly large. Assuming this estimate of the dust mass associated with the SNR is approximately correct, it is probable that most of the dust in the SNR arises from regions where the shock speed is too low to produce significant X-ray emission. The total amount of warm 50-60 K dust is ~0.1 or 0.4 M⊙, depending on whether the dust is modeled in terms of carbonaceous or silicate grains. This provides a firm lower limit to the amount of shock heated dust in N49. Herschel is an ESA space observatory with science instruments provided by European-led Principal Investigator consortia and with important participation from NASA.

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