On Type Ia supernovae from the collisions of two white dwarfs

Cody Raskin, Francis Timmes, Evan Scannapieco, Steven Diehl, Chris Fryer

Research output: Contribution to journalLetterpeer-review

123 Scopus citations


We explore collisions between two white dwarfs as a pathway for making Type Ia supernovae (SNIa). White dwarf number densities in globular clusters allow 10-100, redshift ≲1 collisions per year, and observations by Chomiuk et al. of globular clusters in the nearby S0 galaxy NGC 7457 have detected what is likely to be a SNIa remnant. We carry out simulations of the collision between two 0.6 M white dwarfs at various impact parameters and mass resolutions. For impact parameters less than half the radius of the white dwarf, we find such collisions produce ≈ 0.4 M of56Ni, making such events potential candidates for underluminous SNIa or a new class of transients between Novae and SNIa.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L156-L159
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 2009


  • Hydrodynamics
  • Nuclear reactions, nucleosynthesis, abundances
  • Supernovae: general
  • White dwarfs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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