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Fast neutrino flavor conversion, ejecta properties, and nucleosynthesis in newly-formed hypermassive remnants of neutron-star mergers

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Ardevol-Pulpillo,  Ricard
Stellar Astrophysics, MPI for Astrophysics, Max Planck Society;

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Janka,  Hans-Thomas
Stellar Astrophysics, MPI for Astrophysics, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

George, M., Wu, M.-R., Tamborra, I., Ardevol-Pulpillo, R., & Janka, H.-T. (2020). Fast neutrino flavor conversion, ejecta properties, and nucleosynthesis in newly-formed hypermassive remnants of neutron-star mergers. Physical Review D, 102(10): 103015. doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.102.103015.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0007-D531-1
Abstract
Neutrinos emitted in the coalescence of two neutron stars affect the dynamics of the outflow ejecta and the nucleosynthesis of heavy elements. In this work, we analyze the neutrino emission properties and the conditions leading to the growth of flavor instabilities in merger remnants consisting of a hypermassive neutron star and an accretion disk during the first 10 ms after the merger. The analyses are based on hydrodynamical simulations that include a modeling of neutrino emission and absorption effects via the “improved leakage-equilibration-absorption scheme” (ILEAS). We also examine the nucleosynthesis of the heavy elements via the rapid neutron-capture process (r-process) inside the material ejected during this phase. The dominant emission of ¯νe over νe from the merger remnant leads to favorable conditions for the occurrence of fast pairwise flavor conversions of neutrinos, independent of the chosen equation of state or the mass ratio of the binary. The nucleosynthesis outcome is very robust, ranging from the first to the third r-process peaks. In particular, more than 10−5  M of strontium are produced in these early ejecta that may account for the GW170817 kilonova observation. We find that the amount of ejecta containing free neutrons after the r-process freeze-out, which may power early-time UV emission, is reduced by roughly a factor of 10 when compared to simulations that do not include weak interactions. Finally, the potential flavor equipartition between all neutrino flavors is mainly found to affect the nucleosynthesis outcome in the polar ejecta within ≲30°, by changing the amount of the produced iron-peak and first-peak nuclei, but it does not alter the lanthanide mass fraction therein.