Constraining the Explosion Mechanism(s) and the Production of Chemical Elements in Type Ia Supernovae Using Their Light Curves and Spectra

Wednesday, 11. November 2015, 16:00 - 17:30
Location Library

D. van Rossum: Flash Center for Computational Science, University of Chicago

The light curves and spectra of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) depend on multiple factors, such as the neutron excess in the chemical composition of the white dwarf (WD) progenitor, the central density of the WD, and the mechanism that triggers the detonation.  These factors also play a central role in the nucleosynthesis that happens in SNe Ia.  I describe recent hydrodynamic simulations and radiation transport calculations I and my collaborators have done for a variety of SNe Ia models.  I discuss how recently identified properties of the optical and gamma-ray light curves and spectra (specific spectral features), as well as the X-ray spectra from supernova remnants can be used to constrain the initial conditions and the explosion mechanism(s) in SNe Ia, improving our understanding of them.  I then discuss how these properties can be used to determine the production of chemical elements in SNe Ia, which places constraints on nuclear reaction rates and is essential to modeling galactic chemical evolution.

: Daan van Rossum