Journal Article

The helium star donor channel for the progenitors of Type Ia supernovae

B. Wang, X. Meng, X. Chen and Z. Han

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 395, issue 2, pages 847-854
Published in print May 2009 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online April 2009 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
The helium star donor channel for the progenitors of Type Ia supernovae

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Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) play an important role in astrophysics, especially in the study of cosmic evolution. Several progenitor models for SNe Ia have been proposed in the past. In this paper we carry out a detailed study of the He star donor channel, in which a carbon–oxygen white dwarf (CO WD) accretes material from a He main-sequence star or a He subgiant to increase its mass to the Chandrasekhar mass. Employing Eggleton's stellar evolution code with an optically thick wind assumption, and adopting the prescription of Kato & Hachisu for the mass accumulation efficiency of the He-shell flashes on to the WDs, we performed binary evolution calculations for about 2600 close WD binary systems. According to these calculations, we mapped out the initial parameters for SNe Ia in the orbital period–secondary mass (log PiMi2) plane for various WD masses from this channel. The study shows that the He star donor channel is noteworthy for producing SNe Ia (∼1.2 × 10−3 yr−1 in our Galaxy), and that the progenitors from this channel may appear as supersoft X-ray sources. Importantly, this channel can explain SNe Ia with short delay times (≲108 yr), which is consistent with the recent observational implications of young populations of SN Ia progenitors.

Keywords: binaries: close; stars: evolution; supernovae: general; white dwarfs

Journal Article.  5456 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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