Lock, ‘Shock’ and Two Smoking Blastwaves

Lock, ‘Shock’ and Two Smoking Blastwaves

Since my last post, and over the last 2-3 weeks, I have been mainly familiarising myself with the GALILEO Cluster at CINECA, running basic models and simulations, and getting my hands dirty with sample models from the PLUTO Code for Astrophysical Modelling.

The PLUTO Code is a fluid dynamic code capable of reproducing magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) and supersonic fluids, such as the plasma which exist in stars and Supernova Remnants (SNr).

Once I was comfortable running sample simulations on GALILEO, I began modelling my own simulations of Supernova Explosions (SNe), and their resulting SNr. Firstly, I began running simple, 3D, spherically symmetric explosions, and monitoring the evolution of the blast over the course of ~1900 years.

See the photos below, which show the evolution of the blastwave, with clear forward and reverse shockwaves present. Forward and a reverse shockwaves are created when the supernova blastwave interacts with the surrounding Interstellar Medium (ISM). The forward shock continues to expand into the ISM, the reverse shock travels back into the freely expanding SNr.

Snapshots of a spherically symmetric expanding Supernova Explosion simulation. The above photo shows the density profile of the blast after 100, 450, 1000, and 1900 years.

Once I was happy with the shape and evolution of the simple SNe described above, it was time to introduce some realistic physical conditions, because in reality, no SNe looks that perfect. One of my supervisor’s suggestions was to introduce a torus around the expanding blastwave (imagine the star was surrounded by a ring, similar to Saturn’s). This torus like feature depicts a much more realistic SNe simulation, in which the expanding blastwave interacts with a region of high density somewhere out in the ISM.

In the photos below, you can clearly see the interaction of the blastwave with the surrounding torus feature, and the effect this additional condition has on the evolution of the SNe, relative to the previous photos.

Snapshots of a spherically symmetric expanding Supernova Explosion simulation, interacting with a surrounding ‘torus of matter’. The above photo shows the density profile of the blast after 350, 950, 1500, and 1900 years.

In the coming weeks, I plan on introducing more realistic physical conditions, such as random clumps of matter scattered around the SNr, among other things. It’s also worth noting that the images in this post are 2D slices of a 3D model.

If you have any questions about the project, please feel free to comment and I’ll be more than happy to answer.

Cathal

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