R. Kiuchi, M. Mori, G. V. Bicknell, R. W. Clay, P.G. Edwards, R. Enomoto, S. Gunji, S. Hara, T. Hara, T. Hattori, S. Hayashi, Y. Higashi, Y. Hirai, K. Inoue, C. Itoh, S. Kabuki, F. Kajino, H. Katagiri, A. Kawachi, T. Kifune, H. Kubo, J. Kushida, Y. Matsubara, T. Mizukami, Y. Mizumoto, R. Mizuniwa, H. Muraishi, Y. Muraki, T. Naito, T. Nakamori, S. Nakano, D. Nishida, K. Nishijima, M. Ohishi, Y. Sakamoto, A. Seki, V. Stamatescu, T. Suzuki, D. L. Swaby, T. Tanimori, G. Thornton, F. Tokanai, K. Tsuchiya, S. Watanabe, Y. Yamada, E. Yamazaki, S. Yanagita, T. Yoshida, T. Yoshikoshi, Y. Yukawa
Because accretion and merger shocks in clusters of galaxies may accelerate particles to high energies, clusters are candidate sites for the origin of ultra-high-energy (UHE) cosmic-rays. A prediction was presented for gamma-ray emission from a cluster of galaxies at a detectable level with the current generation of imaging atmospheric Cherenkov telescopes. The gamma-ray emission was produced via inverse Compton upscattering of cosmic microwave background (CMB) photons by electron-positron pairs generated by collisions of UHE cosmic rays in the cluster. We observed two clusters of galaxies, Abell 3667 and Abell 4038, searching for very-high-energy gamma-ray emission with the CANGAROO-III atmospheric Cherenkov telescope system in 2006. The analysis showed no significant excess around these clusters, yielding upper limits on the gamma-ray emission. From a comparison of the upper limit for the north-west radio relic region of Abell 3667 with a model prediction, we derive a lower limit for the magnetic field of the region of ~0.1 μG. This shows the potential of gamma-ray observations in studies of the cluster environment. We also discuss the flux upper limit from cluster center regions using a model of gamma-ray emission from neutral pions produced in hadronic collisions of cosmic-ray protons with the intracluster medium (ICM). The derived upper limit of the cosmic-ray energy density within this framework is an order of magnitude higher than that of our Galaxy.