Intern
Astronomie

Axions from Betelgeuse

Search for High-Energy Emission from Axions in the Massive Star Betelgeuse

Axion-like particles (ALPs) could be produced by thermal processes in stellar interiors, escape from the star and could be converted into photons in the Galactic magnetic field if they are light enough. Such processes could lead to hard X-ray and soft gamma-ray emission in the direction of certain stars. A promising candidate for the search of the expected signals from bremsstrahlung, Compton effect and Primakoff effect is the red supergiants Betelgeuse (alpha Orionis). Betelgeuse is a massive star with more than 16 solar masses and currently experiencing the late stages its evolution, which may enhance the signals. In this thesis, serendipitous observations of Betelgeuse (and potentially more massive stars) from the gamma-ray observatory INTEGRAL should be analysed towards a possible signal from ALPs. A non-detection has the potential to set the strongest limits of the mass vs. coupling parameters of axions with electrons and/or photons in the literature.

More information:

Recent and related publications: 

Contact persons:

Dr. Thomas Siegert: thomas.siegert@uni-wuerzburg.de