Observation of Spectral Structures in the Flux of Cosmic-Ray Protons from 50 GeV to 60 TeV with the Calorimetric Electron Telescope on the International Space Station

O. Adriani, Y. Akaike, K. Asano, Y. Asaoka, E. Berti, G. Bigongiari, W. R. Binns, M. Bongi, P. Brogi, A. Bruno, J. H. Buckley, N. Cannady, G. Castellini, C. Checchia, M. L. Cherry, G. Collazuol, K. Ebisawa, A. W. Ficklin, H. Fuke, S. Gonzi, T. G. Guzik, T. Hams, K. Hibino, M. Ichimura, K. Ioka, W. Ishizaki, M. H. Israel, K. Kasahara, J. Kataoka, R. Kataoka, Y. Katayose, C. Kato, N. Kawanaka, Y. Kawakubo, K. Kobayashi, K. Kohri, H. S. Krawczynski, J. F. Krizmanic, P. Maestro, P. S. Marrocchesi, A. M. Messineo, J. W. Mitchell, S. Miyake, A. A. Moiseev, M. Mori, N. Mori, H. M. Motz, K. Munakata, S. Nakahira et al.

Submitted on 2 September 2022


A precise measurement of the cosmic-ray proton spectrum with the Calorimetric Electron Telescope (CALET) is presented in the energy interval from 50 GeV to 60 TeV, and the observation of a softening of the spectrum above 10 TeV is reported. The analysis is based on the data collected during 6.2 years of smooth operations aboard the International Space Station and covers a broader energy range with respect to the previous proton flux measurement by CALET, with an increase of the available statistics by a factor of 2.2. Above a few hundred GeV we confirm our previous observation of a progressive spectral hardening with a higher significance (more than 20 sigma). In the multi-TeV region we observe a second spectral feature with a softening around 10 TeV and a spectral index change from =2.6 to -2.9 consistently, within the errors, with the shape of the spectrum reported by DAMPE. We apply a simultaneous fit of the proton differential spectrum which well reproduces the gradual change of the spectral index encompassing the lower energy power-law regime and the two spectral features observed at higher energies.


Comment: main text: 8 pages, 5 figures, supplemental material: 9 pages, 7 figures, 1 table, marked as a PRL Editor's Suggestion

Subject: Astrophysics - High Energy Astrophysical Phenomena