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Description and Aim
The merger of two stars is a process that touches many branches of modern astrophysics and is responsible for some of the most spectacular astronomical phenomena. From the explosion of massive stars to the formation of helium sub dwarfs, stellar mergers provide key insight into the physical processes which govern the structure and evolution of stars. Many exotic types of star are thought to be born in stellar mergers: blue stragglers, sub dwarf O and B stars, extreme
helium stars, R Coronae Borealis stars, the R
stars and V838 Mon to name just a few. Stars may not survive a merger, as in
would like to know which observational signatures may reveal their history.
We will bring
together observers and modelers of stellar mergers for a two-week workshop at
the Lorentz Centre,
associated modeling efforts.
Key questions to be addressed during the workshop:
are the most important channels for stars that merge? What are the statistics of binary merger
stars were born in a merger event and what are their observational properties?
Which mergers lead to an explosive event e.g.
ð How well established is the theory behind stellar mergers and what is poorly understood? e.g. RLOF, common envelope evolution, contact binary evolution, associated mixing, nucleosynthesis, and the role of magnetic fields.
ð Which methods are or can be used for modeling stellar mergers: hydrodynamics, stellar dynamics, stellar evolution codes, population synthesis, and/or combinations of these? How can these be improved?
ð What will future observational surveys (e.g. GAIA) offer to the study of stellar mergers?
The formal program for each day will centre on a specific theme. Within each major theme, there will be two review talks, and space for a small number of short talks, spontaneous contributions, and led discussions. Ample time will be available for collaboration, brainstorming, poster sessions and the fruitful Lorentz centre coffee breaks. Students will be encouraged to prepare and present posters during the workshop.
A number of astrophysical
interesting test problems will be provided in advance of the workshop.
Delegates will be invited to run suitable simulations and to discuss and
compare these during informal workshop sessions. The
To maintain a workshop atmosphere, the maximum number of participants will be limited to 30 at any one time. In order to achieve this target, participation will be by invitation only.