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56Ni Production in Double Degenerate White Dwarf Collisions

  • Raskin, Cody
  • Scannapieco, Evan
  • Rockefeller, Gabriel
  • Fryer, Chris
  • Diehl, Steven
  • Timmes, F. X.
Publication Date
Sep 13, 2010
Submission Date
Sep 13, 2010
DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/724/1/111
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We present a comprehensive study of white dwarf collisions as an avenue for creating type Ia supernovae. Using a smooth particle hydrodynamics code with a 13-isotope, {\alpha}-chain nuclear network, we examine the resulting 56Ni yield as a function of total mass, mass ratio, and impact parameter. We show that several combinations of white dwarf masses and impact parameters are able to produce sufficient quantities of 56Ni to be observable at cosmological distances. We find the 56Ni production in double-degenerate white dwarf collisions ranges from sub-luminous to the super-luminous, depending on the parameters of the collision. For all mass pairs, collisions with small impact parameters have the highest likelihood of detonating, but 56Ni production is insensitive to this parameter in high-mass combinations, which significantly increases their likelihood of detection. We also find that the 56Ni dependence on total mass and mass ratio is not linear, with larger mass primaries producing disproportionately more 56Ni than their lower mass secondary counterparts, and symmetric pairs of masses producing more 56Ni than asymmetric pairs.

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