COMPTEL 26-Aluminum Map of the Galactic Plane

First COMPTEL map of the plane of the Milky Way Galaxy in the emission of 1.809-MeV gamma-rays from the radioactive decay of 26-Aluminum. This high-energy emission traces nucleosynthesis in our Galaxy over the last few million years. The irregular and asymmetric appearance suggests that localized regions contribute substantially to the observed emission, in addition to the smooth distribution expected from at least 10,000 Galaxy-wide nucleosynthetic events (i.e., novae and supernovae). The total 26-Al content of our Galaxy may thus be well below the 3 solar-masses derived from earlier measurements of the region toward the Galactic Centre.

For further information, see "COMPTEL Observations of Galactic 26Al Emission" (Diehl et al., 1995, AA, 296, 445).

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