August 11-15, 2014


Gamma-ray emission from the thermonuclear explosion of a white dwarf

Jordi Isern (ICE-CSIC/IEEC)

Type Ia supernovae (SNIa) are thought to be the outcome of the thermonuclear disruption of a white dwarf in a close binary system. The nature of the parent system, the triggering mechanism and the development of the explosion remain elusive. For a longtime it has been thought that these outbursts were extremely homogeneous both from the photometric and spectroscopic points of views. However, it has been recently shown that SNIa can be classified in different subfamilies opening the possibility to consider different origins for the same phenomenon. One way to discriminate among the different models consists in the detection of the gamma-rays produced by the decay of the isotopes, 56Ni mainly, synthesized during the explosion since their properties depend on the propagation modes of the thermonuclear flame within the white dwarf, and on the structure of the progenitor. In this talk we also show how gamma-rays emitted by SNIa can be used for this purpose and we describe the results obtained up to now.

Mode of presentation: oral