Impact of type Ia supernova ejecta on a helium-star binary companion

Kuo Chuan Pan*, Paul M. Ricker, Ronald E. Taam

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


The impact of Type Ia supernova (SN) ejecta on a helium-star companion is investigated via high-resolution, two-dimensional hydrodynamic simulations. For a range of helium-star models and initial binary separations, it is found that the mass unbound in the interaction, δM ub, is related to the initial binary separation, a, by a power law of the form δ M ub ∝ am . This power-law index is found to vary from -3.1 to -4.0, depending on the mass of the helium star. The small range of this index brackets values found previously for hydrogen-rich companions, suggesting that the dependence of the unbound mass on orbital separation is not strongly sensitive to the nature of the binary companion. The kick velocity is also related to the initial binary separation by a power law with an index in a range from -2.7 to -3.3, but the power-law index differs from those found in previous studies for hydrogen-rich companions. The space motion of the companion after the SN is dominated by its orbital velocity in the pre-SN binary system. The level of Ni/Fe contamination of the companion resulting from the passage of the SN ejecta is difficult to estimate, but an upper limit on the mass of bound nickel is found to be ∼ 5 × 10-4 M .

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)78-85
Number of pages8
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2010


  • Binaries: close
  • Methods: numerical
  • Supernovae: general

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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