MAGIC observations provide compelling evidence of the hadronic multi-TeV emission from the putative PeVatron SNR G106.3+2.7
Astron. & Astroph. 671, A12, March 2023 (Submitted 2022/11/28)
External url: https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361/202244931
The SNR G106.3+2.7, detected at 1--100 TeV energies by different $\gamma$-ray facilities, is one of the most promising PeVatron candidates. This SNR has a cometary shape which can be divided into a head and a tail region with different physical conditions. However, it is not identified in which region the 100 TeV emission is produced due to the limited position accuracy and/or angular resolution of existing observational data. Additionally, it remains unclear whether the origin of the $\gamma$-ray emission is leptonic or hadronic. With the better angular resolution provided by these new MAGIC data compared to earlier $\gamma$-ray datasets, we aim to reveal the acceleration site of PeV particles and the emission mechanism by resolving the SNR G106.3+2.7 with 0.1$^\circ$ resolution at TeV energies. We detected extended $\gamma$-ray emission spatially coincident with the radio continuum emission at the head and tail of SNR G106.3+2.7. The fact that we detected a significant $\gamma$-ray emission with energies above 6.0 TeV from the tail region only suggests that the emissions above 10 TeV, detected with air shower experiments (Milagro, HAWC, Tibet AS$\gamma$ and LHAASO), are emitted only from the SNR tail. Under this assumption, the multi-wavelength spectrum of the head region can be explained with either hadronic or leptonic models, while the leptonic model for the tail region is in contradiction with the emission above 10 TeV and X-rays. In contrast, the hadronic model could reproduce the observed spectrum at the tail by assuming a proton spectrum with a cutoff energy of $\sim 1$ PeV for the tail region. Such a high energy emission in this middle-aged SNR (4--10 kyr) can be explained by considering the scenario that protons escaping from the SNR in the past interact with surrounding dense gases at present.