Features of the acoustic mechanism of core-collapse supernova explosions

Adam S. Burrows, E. Livne, L. Dessart, C. D. Ott, J. Murphy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

161 Scopus citations


In the context of 2D, axisymmetric, multigroup, radiation/hydrodynamic simulations of core-collapse supernovae over the full 180° domain, we present an exploration of the progenitor dependence of the acoustic mechanism of explosion. All progenitor models we have tested with our Newtonian code explode. However, some of the cores left behind in our simulations, particularly for the more massive progenitors, have baryon masses that are larger than the canonical ∼1.5 M of well-measured pulsars. We investigate the roles of the standing accretion shock instability (SASI), the excitation of core g-modes, the generation of core acoustic power, the ejection of matter with r-process potential, the windlike character of the explosion, and the fundamental anisotropy of the blasts. We find that the breaking of spherical symmetry is central to the supernova phenomenon, the delays to explosion can be long, and the blasts, when top-bottom asymmetric, are self-collimating. We see indications that the initial explosion energies are larger for the more massive progenitors and smaller for the less massive progenitors and that the neutrino contribution to the explosion energy may be an increasing function of progenitor mass. However, the explosion energy is still accumulating by the end of our simulations and has not converged to final values. The degree of explosion asymmetry we obtain is completely consistent with that inferred from the polarization measurements of Type le supernovae. Furthermore, we calculate for the first time the magnitude and sign of the net impulse on the core due to anisotropic neutrino emission and suggest that hydrodynamic and neutrino recoils in the context of our asymmetric explosions afford a natural mechanism for observed pulsar proper motions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)416-433
Number of pages18
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1 I
StatePublished - Jan 20 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


  • Hydrodynamics
  • Neutrinos
  • Radiation mechanisms: general
  • Stars: oscillations (including pulsations)
  • Supernovae: general


Dive into the research topics of 'Features of the acoustic mechanism of core-collapse supernova explosions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this