We report the discovery of TeV gamma-ray emission coincident with the shell-type radio supernova remnant (SNR) CTA 1 using the VERITAS gamma-ray observatory. The source, VER J0006+729, was detected as a 6.5 standard deviation excess over background and shows an extended morphology, approximated by a two-dimensional Gaussian of semimajor (semiminor) axis 0.°30 (0.°24) and a centroid 5′ from the Fermi gamma-ray pulsar PSR J0007+7303 and its X-ray pulsar wind nebula (PWN). The photon spectrum is well described by a power-law dN/dE = N 0(E/3 TeV)-Γ, with a differential spectral index of Γ = 2.2 ± 0.2stat ± 0.3sys, and normalization N 0 = (9.1 ± 1.3stat ± 1.7sys) × 10-14 cm -2 s-1 TeV-1. The integral flux, F γ = 4.0 × 10-12 erg cm-2 s -1 above 1 TeV, corresponds to 0.2% of the pulsar spin-down power at 1.4 kpc. The energetics, colocation with the SNR, and the relatively small extent of the TeV emission strongly argue for the PWN origin of the TeV photons. We consider the origin of the TeV emission in CTA 1.
- gamma-rays: stars