Exotic Supernova Simulations Reveal Cosmic Explosions

A team of scientists has achieved a significant breakthrough in the study of exotic supernova by conducting highly detailed 3D simulations. The research, led by KE-JUNG CHEN from the Sinica Academy in Taiwan, utilized powerful supercomputers at the Lawrence Berkeley laboratory and the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan. The findings have been published in the Astrophysical Journal.

Supernova explosions, which mark the end of a star’s life cycle, have always captivated scientists. The latest observations in this field have revealed a number of extraordinary explosions that challenge existing theories about supernova physics.

Of particular interest to researchers are exotic supernovae, including super-luminous and long-lasting supernovae. Their origins are not yet fully understood, but astronomers speculate that they may occur as a result of unusual massive stars with masses ranging from 80 to 140 times that of our Sun.

Past models were limited by one-dimensional simulations, which failed to capture the complex interaction between radiation and matter in these explosions. However, the team led by KE-JUNG CHEN has overcome these limitations by creating the world’s first three-dimensional simulations of exotic supernova.

The results of the study suggest that explosions in massive stars can exhibit characteristics similar to those of multiple dim supernovae. During different stages, gases expelled during the explosions collide and convert up to 30% of their kinetic energy into radiation, which explains the phenomenon of super-luminous supernovae.

This groundbreaking research, made possible by state-of-the-art supercomputer simulations, opens up new horizons in our understanding of exotic supernova physics. As new projects focused on the study of supernovae are initiated, astronomers will continue to expand our knowledge of stellar explosion mechanisms.

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