KeywordsPhysics, Astronomy and Astrophysics.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractSupernova (SN) 1987A focused attention on the critical role of hydrodynamic instabilities in the evolution of supernovae. To test the modeling of these instabilities, we are developing laboratory experiments of hydrodynamic mixing under conditions relevant to supernovae. Initial results were reported in J. Kane et al., Astrophys. J. 478, L75 (1997). The Nova laser is used to shock two-layer targets, producing Richtmyer-Meshkov (RM) and Rayleigh-Taylor (RT) instabilities at the interfaces between the layers, analogous to instabilities seen at the interfaces of SN 1987A. Because the hydrodynamics in the laser experiments at intermediate times (3 ns-40 ns) and in SN 1987A at intermediate times (5 s-10⁴ s) are well described by the Euler equations, the hydrodynamics scale between the two regimes. The experiments are modeled using the hydrodynamics codes HYADES and CALE, and the supernova code PROMETHEUS, thus serving as a benchmark for PROMETHEUS. Results of the experiments and simulations are presented. Analysis of the spike and bubble velocities in the experiment using potential flow theory and a modified Ott thin shell theory is presented. A numerical study of 2D vs. 3D differences in instability growth at the O-He and He-H interfaces of SN 1987A, and the design for analogous laser experiments are presented. We discuss further work to incorporate more features of the SN in the experiments, including spherical geometry, multiple layers and density gradients. Past and ongoing work in laboratory and laser astrophysics is reviewed, including experimental work on supernova remnants (SNRs). A numerical study of RM instability in SNRs is presented.
Degree ProgramGraduate College