research bits

Zenati and Perets

Yossef Zenati recently received his Ph.D. from the Technion for his research in the field of Supernovae under the supervision of Prof. Hagai Perets in our department. He watched the ceremony held at the Technion campus from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore U.S.A, where he is currently conducting his postdoctoral research. Yossef’s doctoral dissertation entitled "Mechanisms for Thermonuclear Stellar Explosions and the Origin of Type Ia Supernovae" dealt with the physics and the formation mechanism of supernovae from thermonuclear explosions of white dwarfs, which produce much of the elements in the universe (other than hydrogen and helium). These supernovae are an effective observational tool in the measurements of the fundamental properties of the universe and its expansion and are the focus of many researchers who try to understand, among other things, how they are formed.


Zenati has published 10 papers during his Ph.D., some as first author, one of them was recently accepted to the prestigious journal Physical Review Letters. Five of the papers deal with the final stages in the lives of low mass stars, with initial masses less than 8 times the mass of our sun. "These stars are expected to end their lives as type Ia supernovae, described by a thermonuclear runaway supernovae. In this process, the star ignites rapidly and produces a huge amount of energy and a large amount of Nickel 56 (Ni56). The radioactive decay of Nickel is the reason for the brightness of the exploding star. "


Yossef is currently doing his postdoctoral fellowship at Johns Hopkins University, where he is researching the formation of heavy elements (r-process) from the fusion of neutron stars and black holes. Fortunately, he has won two awards supporting him - a university scholarship award (JHU postdoc fellow) and a fellowship from the Israeli Council for Higher Education for postdoctoral fellows from non-Jewish sectors. Zenati is the first Druze to complete a Ph.D. in physics at the Technion and he hopes more young people from the Druze and Arab sectors will join the research teams at the Technion in every field of science and engineering.


Read more on the Technion website here.

Courtesy of Technion spokesperson.