future events

Detonations in white dwarf dynamical interactions

TYPEAstrophysics Seminar
Speaker:Enrique Garcia-Berro
Affiliation:Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya
Organizer:Hagai Perets
Time:14:30 - 15:30
Location:Lidow 620
Abstract:In old, dense stellar systems collisions of white dwarfs are a rather frequent phenomenon. Here, I present the results of a comprehensive set of smoothed particle hydrodynamics simulations of close encounters of white dwarfs aimed to explore the outcome of the interaction and the nature of the final remnants for different initial conditions.
Depending on the initial conditions and the white dwarf masses, three different outcomes are possible. Specifically, the outcome of the interaction can be either a direct or a lateral collision or the interaction can result in the formation of an eccentric binary system.
In those cases in which a collision occurs, the infalling material is compressed and heated such that the physical conditions for a detonation may be reached during the most violent phases of the merger. While it is found that detonations occur in a significant number of our simulations, in some of them the temperature increase in the shocked region rapidly lifts degeneracy, leading to the quenching of the burning. We thus characterize under which circumstances a detonation is likely to occur as a result of the impact of the disrupted star on the surface of the more massive white dwarf.
Finally, I also study which interactions result in bound systems, and in which ones the more massive white dwarf is also disrupted as a consequence of the dynamical interaction. The sizeable number of simulations performed in this work allows to find how the outcome of the interaction depends on the distance at closest approach, and on the masses of the colliding white dwarfs, and which is the chemical pattern of the nuclearly processed material. Finally, I also discuss the influence of the masses and core chemical compositions of the interacting white dwarfs and the different kinds of impact in the properties of the remnants.