CSI in Supernova Remnants

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Supernovae (SNe) explode in environments that have been significantly modified by the SN progenitors. For core-collapse SNe, the massive progenitors ionize the ambient interstellar medium (ISM) via UV radiation and sweep the ambient ISM via fast stellar winds during the main sequence phase, replenish the surroundings with stellar material via slow winds during the luminous blue variable (LBV) or red supergiant (RSG) phase, and sweep up the circumstellar medium (CSM) via fast winds during the Wolf-Rayet (WR) phase. If a massive progenitor was in a close binary system, the binary interaction could have caused mass ejection in certain preferred directions, such as the orbital plane, and even bipolar outflow/jet. As a massive star finally explodes, the SN ejecta interacts first with the CSM that was ejected and shaped by the star itself. As the newly formed supernova remnant (SNR) expands further, it encounters interstellar structures that were shaped by the progenitor from earlier times. Therefore, the structure and evolution of a SNR is largely dependent on the initial mass and close binarity of the SN progenitor. The Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) has an excellent sample of over 50 confirmed SNRs that are well resolved by Hubble Space Telescope, Chandra X-ray Observatory, and Spitzer Space Telescope. These multi-wavelength observations allow us to conduct stellar forensics in SNRs and understand the wide variety of morphologies and physical properties of SNRs observed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-85
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the International Astronomical Union
Issue numberS331
StatePublished - Feb 1 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Magellanic Clouds
  • circumstellar matter
  • supernova remnants
  • supernovae: general

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Space and Planetary Science

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