Presentation Archive

Kozai Oscillations and Compact Objects in Triple Systems

Todd Thompson

October 30, 2012

Abstract: I will discuss our recent work on the formation and evolution of triple systems composed in part by compact objects. I will focus on the role of Kozai oscillations in accelerating the merger of WD-WD and NS-NS binaries, of interest for “prompt” Type Ia supernovae and short-duration GRBs. I will show example of the new “mass-loss induced eccentric Kozai mechanism” (MIEK), whereby distant stellar binaries can be brought to tidal contact immediately after WD or NS formation by the primary. This mechanism only operates when high-order terms to the 3-body Hamiltonian are included in the secular equations. Finally, I will discuss our recent suggestion that Tycho B, a rare metal-poor A-star in the center of the Tycho supernova remnant, is a blue straggler formed from the merger of two K-type stars that were formerly in a quadruple system with the more massive (probably B-type) binary that became SN 1572.