Supernova (SN) explosions are a major feedback mechanism, regulating star formation in galaxies through their momentum input. We review the observations of SNRs in radiative stages in the Milky Way, to validate theoretical results regarding the momentum/energy injection from a single SN explosion. For seven supernova remnants (SNRs) where we can observe fast-expanding, atomic radiative shells, we show that the shell momentum inferred from H i 21 cm line observations is in the range of (0.5-4.5) × 105 M o˙ km s-1. In two SNRs (W44 and IC 443), shocked molecular gas with momentum comparable to that of the atomic SNR shells has also been observed. We compare the momentum and kinetic/thermal energy of these seven SNRs with the results from 1D and 3D numerical simulations. The observation-based momentum and kinetic energy agree well with the expected momentum/energy input from an SN explosion of ∼1051 erg. It is much more difficult to use data/model comparisons of thermal energy to constrain the initial explosion energy, however, due to rapid cooling and complex physics at the hot/cool interface in radiative SNRs. We discuss the observational and theoretical uncertainties of these global parameters and explosion energy estimates for SNRs in complex environments.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science