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Published December 2012 | Published
Journal Article Open

Charged-current neutrino interactions in core-collapse supernovae in a virial expansion


Core-collapse supernovae may depend sensitively on charged-current neutrino interactions in warm, low-density, neutron-rich matter. A proton in neutron-rich matter is more tightly bound than is a neutron. This energy shift ΔU increases the electron energy in ν_e + n → p + e, increasing the available phase space and absorption cross section. Likewise ΔU decreases the positron energy in ν̅_ e + p → n + e+, decreasing the phase space and cross section. We have calculated ΔU using a model-independent virial expansion and we find that ΔU is much larger, at low densities, than the predictions of many mean-field models. Therefore ΔU could have a significant impact on charged-current neutrino interactions in supernovae. Preliminary simulations of the accretion phase of core-collapse supernovae find that ΔU increases ν̅ _e energies and decreases the ν_e luminosity.

Additional Information

© 2012 American Physical Society. Received 14 September 2012; published 20 December 2012. We thank the staff of the Institute for Nuclear Theory (INT) for their hospitality during the program INT 12-2A when this work was started. We thank Achim Schwenk for useful comments. CJH is partially supported by Department of Energy Grant No.DE-FG02-87ER40365. Thework of GS was supported by the Department of Energy Topical Collaboration to study neutrinos and nucleosynthesis in hot dense matter. CDO and EO are partially supported by NSF Grants No. AST- 0855535, No. OCI-0905046, and No. PHY-1151197. Some of the numerical simulations were performed at Caltech's Center for Advanced Computing Research on the cluster "Zwicky" funded through NSF Grant No. PHY-0960291 and the Sherman Fairchild Foundation.

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Published - PhysRevC.86.065806.pdf


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