Supernova Remnants: An Odyssey in Space after Stellar death

Supernova Remnants: An Odyssey in Space after Stellar death

Supernova Remnants: An Odyssey in Space after Stellar death


1st Abstract

Title (1st Abstract)

The impact of supernova remnants on interstellar turbulence and star formation

First Author

Liubin Pan


Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

Additional Authors

Paolo Padoan
Troels Haugboelle
Ake Nordlund

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10. SNe and SNRs with circumstellar interactions

1st Abstract

The explosion energy of supernovae is believed to be a major energy source to drive and maintain turbulent motions in the interstellar gas. The interaction of supernova remnants with the interstellar medium plays a crucial role in shaping the statistics of interstellar turbulence, and has important effects on physical properties of molecular clouds. To investigate supernova-driven turbulence in molecular clouds and the implications for star formation, we conducted a large-scale MHD simulation, keeping track of the evolution of supernova remnants and their interactions with the interstellar gas in a region of 250 pc. The simulation accounts for the effects of gas heating and cooling, the magnetic fields and self-gravity, and the explosion energy of supernovae is injected as thermal energy at randomly selected locations in the simulation box. We analyzed the dense molecular clouds formed in our simulation, and showed that their properties, including the mass-size, velocity-size relations, mass and size probability distributions, and magnetic field-density relation, are all consistent with observational results, suggesting that the dynamics and structure of
molecular clouds are the natural result of supernova-driven turbulence. We also found that, at
the scale of molecular clouds, turbulent motions contain more power in solenoidal modes than
in compressive modes. This suggests that the effective driving force for interstellar turbulence is largely solenoidal, in contrast to the recent hypothesis that supernova driving is purely compressive. The physical reason is that, as a supernova remnant impacts the ambient interstellar gas, the baroclinic effect arises immediately, which preferentially converts compressive motions to solenoidal modes throughout the evolution of the remnant in the interstellar medium. The implications of our results concerning the statistics of supernova-driven turbulence in molecular clouds on theoretical modeling of star formation will be discussed.