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2011 Annual Science Report

Arizona State University Reporting  |  SEP 2010 – AUG 2011

Astrophysical Controls on the Elements of Life, Task 4: Model the Injection of Supernova Material Into Protoplanetary Disks

Project Summary

Our Solar System is known to have contained short-lived radionuclides such as 26Al and 60Fe when it formed. These must have been created either during or just before Solar System formation. A supernova explosion is thought to be the most likely source. Depending on the manner of supernova injection, other elements relevant to life may accompany the radionuclides. In this task we study how a supernova might inject material into the protoplanetary disk from which the planets in the Solar System formed, after the formation of the protostar. This tests the hypothesis of supernova injection and quantifies its contributions to radionuclides and other elements.

4 Institutions
3 Teams
1 Publication
0 Field Sites
Field Sites

Project Progress

In March 2010 we published what is probably the most definitive work to date on injection of supernova material into protoplanetary disks (Ouellette et al. 2010, ApJ 711, 597). This was followed in Decmeber 2010 by an investigation of the collateral impact on oxygen isotopes in a protoplanetary disk when 26Al is injected at levels consistent with meteoritic analyses (Ellinger, Young & Desch 2010, ApJ 725, 692). We also critically examined the the leading alternative explanation for the isotopic anomalies in meteorites, the so-called X-wind model. Our results were published in December 2010 (Desch, Morris, Connolly & Boss 2010, ApJ 725, 692).

In March 2011, Desch presented a poster on short-lived radionuclides potentially produced in the disk, after the supernova injection (Desch, Krot & Alexander 2011, LPSC 42, 2524).

In July 2011, Desch reviewed recent advances in the field of short-lived radionuclides in meteorites, at the Gordon Research Conference on Origins of Solar Systems. This talk included new results on supernova dust condensation that support the model of injection into a protoplanetary disk. This work is currently in preparation for publication.

    Steven Desch Steven Desch
    Project Investigator
    Patrick Young

    Divya Allu Peddinti
    Graduate Student

    Carola Ellinger
    Graduate Student

    Objective 1.1
    Formation and evolution of habitable planets.

    Objective 3.1
    Sources of prebiotic materials and catalysts