Institute of Astronomy

Type Ia supernovae: Explosions and Progenitors

SpeakerTalk DateTalk Series
Wolfgang Kerzendorf (U. Toronto)19 September 2012Institute of Astronomy Seminars

Abstract

Type Ia supernovae are known as the precise distance indicators that
allowed the remarkable discovery of the accelerated expansion of the
universe. Despite this astounding feat, there still remain large
uncertainties in many of the key issues surrounding these extremely
energetic events. These uncertainties, while not being horribly detrimental
to their use as distance indicators, hamper the understanding of the far
reaching consequences these cosmic factories of heavy elements have on the
chemical evolution of the Universe.

Type Ia Supernovae can be divided into three distinct phases. The
pre-supernova evolution, the explosion itself and the expansion phase, which
results in spectra and light-curves. In this talk I will first presents our
findings on the progenitor question (pre-supernova phase). In addition, I
will discuss my work on automating spectral analysis and how it links with
explosion physics and the progenitor question. Finally, I will briefly
highlight Universities of Toronto's involvement in arctic astronomy and
introduce our transient search with the telescope CATS.

Presentation

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