AuthorMurphy, Jeremiah Wayne
AdvisorBurrows, Adam S.
Committee ChairBurrows, Adam S.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractCore-collapse supernovae are some of the most energetic events in the Universe, they herald the birth of neutron stars and black holes, are a major site for nucleosynthesis, influence galactic hydrodynamics, and trigger further star formation. As such, it is important to understand the mechanism of explosion. Moreover, observations imply that asymmetries are, in the least, a feature of the mechanism, and theory suggests that multi-dimensional hydrodynamics may be crucial for successful explosions. In this dissertation, we present theoretical investigations into the multi-dimensional nature of the supernova mechanism. It had been suggested that nuclear reactions might excite non-radial g-modes (the ε-mechanism) in the cores of progenitors, leading to asymmetric explosions. We calculate the eigenmodes for a large suite of progenitors including excitation by nuclear reactions and damping by neutrino and acoustic losses. Without exception, we find unstable g-modes for each progenitor. However, the timescales for growth are at least an order of magnitude longer than the time until collapse. Thus, the ε-mechanism does not provide appreciable amplification of non-radial modes before the core undergoes collapse. Regardless, neutrino-driven convection, the standing accretion shock instability, and other instabilities during the explosion provide ample asymmetry. To adequately simulate these, we have developed a new hydrodynamics code, BETHE-hydro that uses the Arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian (ALE) approach, includes rotational terms, solves Poisson’s equation for gravity on arbitrary grids, and conserves energy and momentum in its basic implementation. By using time dependent arbitrary grids that can adapt to the numerical challenges of the problem, this code offers unique flexibility in simulating astrophysical phenomena. Finally, we use BETHE-hydro to investigate the conditions and criteria for supernova explosions by the neutrino mechanism. We find that a critical luminosity/ mass-accretion-rate condition distinguishes non-exploding from exploding models in hydrodynamic 1D and 2D simulations. Importantly, the critical luminosity for 2D simulations is found to be ∼70% of the critical luminosity for 1D simulations. We identify the specifics ofmulti-dimensional hydrodynamic simulations that enable explosions at lower neutrino luminosities in 2D and discuss how these results might foreshadow successful explosions by eventual 3D radiation-hydrodynamic simulations.