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Journal Article

Current status of r-process nucleosynthesis


Diehl,  R.
High Energy Astrophysics, MPI for Extraterrestrial Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Kajino, T., Aoki, W., Balantekin, A. B., Diehl, R., Famiano, M. A., & Mathews, G. J. (2019). Current status of r-process nucleosynthesis. Progress in Particle and Nuclear Physics, 107, 109-166. doi:10.1016/j.ppnp.2019.02.008.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0004-D931-0
The rapid neutron capture process (r-process) is believed to be responsible for about half of the production of the elements heavier than iron and contributes to abundances of some lighter nuclides as well. A universal pattern of r-process element abundances is observed in some metal-poor stars of the Galactic halo. This suggests that a wellregulated combination of astrophysical conditions and nuclear physics conspires to produce such a universal abundance pattern. The search for the astrophysical site for r-process nucleosynthesis has stimulated interdisciplinary research for more than six decades. There is currently much enthusiasm surrounding evidence for r-process nucleosynthesis in binary neutron star mergers in the multi-wavelength follow-up observations of kilonova/gravitational-wave GRB170807A/GW170817. Nevertheless, there remain questions as to the contribution over the history of the Galaxy to the current solar-system r-process abundances from other sites such as neutrino-driven winds or magnetohydrodynamical ejection of material from core-collapse supernovae. In this review we highlight some current issues surrounding the nuclear physics input, astronomical observations, galactic chemical evolution, and theoretical simulations of r process astrophysical environments with goal of outlining a path toward resolving the remaining mysteries of the r-process.