Disks and outflows from black hole-neutron star mergers
November 05, 2012
Abstract: Black hole-neutron star mergers are violent, relativistic events that release tremendous amounts of energy in gravitational waves, neutrinos, and photons. During merger, the intense tidal force from the black hole shreds the neutron star, so that some nuclear matter falls promptly into the hole, some forms a quasi-stationary accretion disk around the hole, and some is ejected to large distances. Quantitative information about the amount and properties of matter undergoing each of these three fates can only be had through general relativistic numerical simulations. In this talk, I discuss the results of merger simulations I have performed with the SXS collaboration. Our simulations attempt to determine what masses of ejecta and disks are possible and what are likely, how much potentially-observable energy is released and by what mechanisms, and how the neutron star matter itself evolves after the star’s disruption.