Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Physics Division

Physics Division Seminars

Physics Division Seminars bring us speakers on a variety of physics related subjects. Usually these are held in the Building 6008 large Conference Room, at 3:00 pm on the chosen day, but times and locations may vary. For more information, contact our seminar chairman,

Alfredo Galindo-Uribarri
Tel (Office): (865) 574-6124  (FAX): (865) 574-1268


Thu., March 26, 2015, at 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM (refreshments served at 2:40 PM)

Modeling Combustion in Current Candidate Scenarios for Thermonuclear Supernovae

Dean M. Townsley, Department of Physics & Astronomy, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL
Bldg. 6008, Large Conference Room

While Type Ia Supernovae are widely depended upon for accurate measurements of the expansion history of the universe, many aspects of their origins remain unknown. Improved simulations and observations in the last decade have only made this situation more unclear. While we know from the material ejected that these supernovae must come from the explosive incineration of a white dwarf star, exactly how and, more critically, why this explosion takes place and what type of stellar systems produce it are ambiguous. I will present two current leading candidate scenarios, including their strengths and weaknesses in explaining the observed properties of Type Ia Supernova populations. Computing the predicted results of these scenarios requires accurate and efficient numerical modeling of the combustion of carbon and helium-rich material on stellar scales in both the deflagration and detonation mode. I will discuss some of the challenges met in computing accurate combustion dynamics and products for a star with dimensions of thousands of kilometers incinerated by reaction fronts with thicknesses of various processes spanning from millimeters to megameters.

Contact: Alfredo-Galindo Uribarri, (865) 574-6124