Few things in the universe hold a unique fascination like space, stars, and the creation of the elements. Humans have long gazed towards the sky, searching for meaning and order to the universe around them. Astronomy is one of the oldest sciences. It is the study and observation of celestial objects and phenomena, like stars, planets and the Milky Way Galaxy, that lie beyond Earth’s atmosphere.
Astrophysics is concerned not only with the observation of our galaxy but also how the universe originated and how it has evolved (cosmology). Astrophysicists apply the physical laws of microphysical processes to explain astronomical events. These laws determine the lifecycle of stars, planets and galaxies in the universe as well as how the universe has changed with time.
Our astronomical research focuses on the numerical simulation of binary star mergers, supernova explosions, and nucleosynthesis. Stars are the building blocks of the galaxy. These luminous balls of light helped explorers navigate the seas and now help modern-day scientists understand the universe. When a dying star explodes, it ejects its mass and heavy elements into the surrounding space. Everything on Earth, including life, is composed of the chemical elements produced in stars and supernova explosions, which is what makes astrophysics research important.
We perform theoretical and observational research using Big Data methodologies to understand:
“Optical tomography of chemical elements synthesized in type Ia supernovae”, IR Seitenzahl, P Ghavamian, JM Laming, FPA Vogt (2019), Physical review letters 123 (4), 041101
“On the formation of neutron stars via accretion-induced collapse in binaries”, AJ Ruiter, L Ferrario, K Belczynski, IR Seitenzahl, RM Crocker, AI Karakas (2019), Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 484 (1), 698-711
“SN1991bg-like supernovae are associated with old stellar populations”, FH Panther, IR Seitenzahl, AJ Ruiter, RM Crocker, C Lidman, EX Wang, (2019), Publications of the Astronomical Society of Australia 36
“Identification of the central compact object in the young supernova remnant 1E 0102.2–7219”, FPA Vogt, ES Bartlett, IR Seitenzahl, MA Dopita, P Ghavamian, AJ Ruiter, (2018), Nature Astronomy 2 (6), 465-471
Nucleosynthesis in thermonuclear supernovae, IR Seitenzahl, DM Townsley (2017), Handbook of Supernovae: 1955
“Diffuse Galactic antimatter from faint thermonuclear supernovae in old stellar populations”, RM Crocker, AJ Ruiter, IR Seitenzahl, FH Panther, S Sim, H Baumgardt, (2017), Nature Astronomy 1 (6), 1-6
“Three-dimensional delayed-detonation models with nucleosynthesis for Type Ia supernovae”, IR Seitenzahl, F Ciaraldi-Schoolmann, FK Röpke, M Fink, W Hillebrandt, (2013), Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 429 (2), 1156-1172
“On the brightness distribution of Type Ia supernovae from violent white dwarf mergers”, AJ Ruiter, SA Sim, R Pakmor, M Kromer, I Seitenzahl, K Belczynski, M Fink, M Herzog, W Hillebrandt, FK Roepke, S Taubenberger (2013), Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 429 (2), 1425-1436
“Sub-luminous type Ia supernovae from mergers of equal-mass white dwarfs with mass 0.9 M⊙”, R Pakmor, M Kromer, FK Röpke, SA Sim, AJ Ruiter, W Hillebrandt (2010), Nature 463 (7277), 61-64
“Rates and delay times of type Ia supernovae”, AJ Ruiter, K Belczynski, C Fryer (2009), The Astrophysical Journal 699 (2), 2026
Students wishing to pursue studies in astronomy and astrophysics can choose from the following degree programs: