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Using PRISM to study nucleosynthesis in common envelope neutron star binary systems

Sophie Abrahams (University of York)

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Dec 17, 2020
from 03:45 PM to 04:00 PM

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In massive-star binary systems, upon reaching later stages of stellar evolution one star can expand as a giant and envelop its companion. If the star enveloped is a neutron star, then mass will rapidly accrete onto the neutron star. Accretion onto common-envelope-phase neutron stars can result in ejected matter that has undergone burning near the neutron star’s surface [1]. We study the nucleosynthesis yields of this ejected matter using PRISM (Portable Routines for Integrated nucleoSynthesis Modeling) - a program built for time-dependent composition tracking of nucleosynthesis in an astrophysical environment. Building on the work of Keegans et. al (2019), collaborators have altered the input trajectories presented in that paper by adding considerations for angular momentum in the accreted matter, an essential component for the formation of an accretion disk around the neutron star. We are comparing the results of running both the trajectories from Keegans et al. and the updated trajectories through PRISM, looking in particular at relative abundances and mass fractions.
Our end goal is to identify nuclear reactions of interest for future experimental work. We will present the altered input trajectories, as well as preliminary results. 

[1] Keegans J, Fryer CL, Jones SW, Côté B, Belczynski K, Herwig F, Pignatari M, Laird AM, Diget CA. Nucleosynthetic yields from neutron stars accreting in binary common envelopes. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 2019 May;485(1):620-39.