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The Astrophysical Journal


IOP Publishing


We have search spectra obtained by the Solar Maximum Mission Gamma-Ray Spectrometer during 1981-1988 for evidence of transient gamma-ray lines from the Crab Nebula which have been reported by previous experiments at energies 400-460 keV and 539 keV. We find no evidence for significant emission in any of these lines on time scales between aproximately 1 day and approximately 1 yr. Our 3 sigma upper limits on the transient flux during 1 d intervals are approximately equal to 2.2 x 10-3 photons/sq cm/s for narrow lines at any energy, and approximately equal to 2.9 x 10-3 photons/sq cm/s for the 539 keV line if it is as broad as 42 keV Full Width at Half Maximum (FWHM). We also searched our data during the approximately 5 hr period on 1981 June 6 during which Owens, Myers, & Thompson (1985) reported a strong line at 405 keV. We detected no line down to a 3 upper sigma limit of 3.3 x 10-3 photons/sq cm/s in disagreement with the flux 7.2 +/- 2.1 x 10-3 photos/sq cm/s measured by Owens et al.