2017 journal article

A Massive Shell of Supernova-formed Dust in SNR G54.1+0.3


By: T. Temim*, E. Dwek*, R. Arendt*, K. Borkowski, S. Reynolds, P. Slane*, J. Gelfand*, J. Raymond*

author keywords: dust, extinction; ISM: general; ISM: individual objects (SNR G54.1+0.3); ISM: supernova remnants; pulsars: individual (PSR J1930+1852)
Source: Web Of Science
Added: August 6, 2018

While theoretical dust condensation models predict that most refractory elements produced in core-collapse supernovae (SNe) efficiently condense into dust, a large quantity of dust has so far only been observed in SN 1987A. We present the analysis of Spitzer Space Telescope, Herschel Space Observatory, Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA), and AKARI observations of the infrared (IR) shell surrounding the pulsar wind nebula in the supernova remnant G54.1+0.3. We attribute a distinctive spectral feature at 21 $\mu$m to a magnesium silicate grain species that has been invoked in modeling the ejecta-condensed dust in Cas A, which exhibits the same spectral signature. If this species is responsible for producing the observed spectral feature and accounts for a significant fraction of the observed IR continuum, we find that it would be the dominant constituent of the dust in G54.1+0.3, with possible secondary contributions from other compositions, such as carbon, silicate, or alumina grains. The smallest mass of SN-formed dust required by our models is 1.1 $\pm$ 0.8 $\rm M_{\odot}$. We discuss how these results may be affected by varying dust grain properties and self-consistent grain heating models. The spatial distribution of the dust mass and temperature in G54.1+0.3 confirms the scenario in which the SN-formed dust has not yet been processed by the SN reverse shock and is being heated by stars belonging to a cluster in which the SN progenitor exploded. The dust mass and composition suggest a progenitor mass of 16$-$27 $\rm M_{\odot}$ and imply a high dust condensation efficiency, similar to that found for Cas A and SN 1987A. The study provides another example of significant dust formation in a Type IIP SN and sheds light on the properties of pristine SN-condensed dust.