Univ. of California Berkeley
|Title (1st Abstract)||
Supernova 1987A at 29 Years
University of California Berkeley
10. SNe and SNRs with circumstellar interactions
In the 29 years since it was discovered, SN1987A has evolved from supernova to supernova remnant, in the sense that its luminosity is now dominated by radiation from its shock interaction with circumstellar matter rather than radioactive decay of newly synthesized elements. The circumstellar matter has a complex structure and the impact of the supernova debris results in a complex distribution of shocks, with velocities ranging from a few hundred to several thousand km/s. The supernova blast wave is overtaking dense knots in the equatorial ring, resulting in rapidly brightening optical “hotspots”, while the interaction with less dense matter gives rise to X-rays. The X-rays illuminate the outer supernova debris, causing it to glow at optical wavelengths. The ALMA telescope provides a new window at mm/sub-mm wavelengths, enabling us to probe the structure of the cold inner debris through molecular emission lines.