Apr 1, 2024

Scientists Ignited a Thermonuclear Explosion Inside a Supercomputer

Posted by in categories: space, supercomputing

Computer simulations are giving us new insight into the riotous behavior of cannibal neutron stars.

When a neutron star slurps up material from a close binary companion, the unstable thermonuclear burning of that accumulated material can produce a wild explosion that sends X-radiation bursting across the Universe.

How exactly these powerful eruptions evolve and spread across the surface of a neutron star is something of a mystery. But by trying to replicate the observed X-ray flares using simulations, scientists are learning more about their ins and outs – as well as the ultra-dense neutron stars that produce them.

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