Next-Generation 3D Core-Collapse Supernova Simulations

PI Adam Burrows, Princeton University
Co-PI David Vartanyan, University of California Berkeley
Matt Coleman, Princeton University
Chris White, Princeton University
Adam Burrows Incite 2023 Graphic

The distribution of the debris of an explosion of the core of a 23-solar-mass progenitor model at ~4.3 seconds after core bounce and ~4.0 seconds after explosion.  The physical scale is ~40,000 kilometers on a side. The outer translucent veil is the shock wave. The globular structures trace the debris with a preponderance of the isotope Ni-56. The coloring is in mass density, with blue being lower density and red being higher density.  This is the longest-duration 3D full-physics core-collapse supernova calculation ever performed.

Project Summary

With this new INCITE project, this team will conduct not only a full suite of 3D simulations for the spectrum of progenitor stars, but plan to double this long-term effort because of code speed-ups and improvements.

Project Description

Core-collapse supernova explosions accompany the deaths of massive stars. These explosions give birth to neutron stars and black holes and eject solar masses of heavy elements. However, determining the mechanism of explosion has been a half-century journey of great complexity.

Nevertheless, due in part to recent massive suite of 3D simulations performed using the team’s code Fornax on HPC resources, the delayed neutrino-heating mechanism is emerging finally as a robust solution. However, models must not only be shown to explode but the asymptotic state of the blast must be reached to determine many of the observables. Hence, the key goals of this INCITE project are to determine such observables as the explosion energies and neutron star residual masses. To accomplish this, the team is simulating a collection of massive-star progenitor models to ate times after bounce. The team plans to double this long-term effort because of code speed-ups and improvements. Hence, the overall scientific goal of simulating 3D models to late times has not changed but has in fact been augmented.

As a byproduct of this investigation, the researchers will generate libraries of supernova simulation data; neutrino, nucleosynthetic, and gravitational-wave signatures; and the systematics of supernova explosion energy, neutron star mass, pulsar kicks, and spins, and debris morphologies with progenitor. Hence, this INCITE project has been constructed to build on the team’s recent palpable progress, capture this pivotal moment in theoretical astrophysics when codes and resources are aligning and erect a standard model for core-collapse supernova explosions in the emerging era of the exascale.