The Progenitor Dependence of Core-collapse Supernovae from Three-dimensional Simulations with Progenitor Models of 12-40 Mo

Christian D. Ott, Luke F. Roberts, André Da Silva Schneider, Joseph M. Fedrow, Roland Haas, Erik Schnetter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We present a first study of the progenitor star dependence of the three-dimensional (3D) neutrino mechanism of core-collapse supernovae. We employ full 3D general-relativistic multi-group neutrino radiation-hydrodynamics and simulate the postbounce evolutions of progenitors with zero-age main sequence masses of 12, 15, 20, 27, and 40 M o. All progenitors, with the exception of the 12 M o star, experience shock runaway by the end of their simulations. In most cases, a strongly asymmetric explosion will result. We find three qualitatively distinct evolutions that suggest a complex dependence of explosion dynamics on progenitor density structure, neutrino heating, and 3D flow. (1) Progenitors with massive cores, shallow density profiles, and high post-core-bounce accretion rates experience very strong neutrino heating and neutrino-driven turbulent convection, leading to early shock runaway. Accretion continues at a high rate, likely leading to black hole formation. (2) Intermediate progenitors experience neutrino-driven, turbulence-aided explosions triggered by the arrival of density discontinuities at the shock. These occur typically at the silicon/silicon-oxygen shell boundary. (3) Progenitors with small cores and density profiles without strong discontinuities experience shock recession and develop the 3D standing-accretion shock instability (SASI). Shock runaway ensues late, once declining accretion rate, SASI, and neutrino-driven convection create favorable conditions. These differences in explosion times and dynamics result in a non-monotonic relationship between progenitor and compact remnant mass.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberL3
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2018


  • neutrinos
  • stars: black holes
  • stars: neutron
  • supernovae: general

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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