Prof. Rachid Ouyed (Univ. of Calgary) visit our group and give colloquium speech

Apr 9, 2010

Astrophysical signatures of quark-matter phase transitions (the Quark-Nova)”

Supernova explosions of massive stars are generally thought to leave behind either a black hole or a neutron star. However, allowing for a quark star phase (via a Quark-Nova explosion) leads to a dual-shock phenomena (the supernova shock followed by the Quark-Nova shock) with unique astrophysical implications.

In this talk I will make a case for:

(i) Quark-Novae having manifested themselves as extremely Superluminous Supernovae (e.g. 2006gy, SN2005gj, SN2005ap, SN2008fz, SN2003ma). For Quark-Novae that arise days after the SNe, I will show that the collision between the Quark-Nova ejecta and the supernova ejecta leads to  photometry and spectroscopy with encouraging fits to superluminous Supernovae features (lightcurves and emission/absoprtion lines).

(ii) Quark-Novae as a possible inner engine of the still elusive Gamma Ray Bursters (GRBs).  In particular, here I will argue that allowing for a quark star stage/phase (between a neutron star and a black hole phase) offers natural explanations for some intriguing photometric and spectroscopic features of GRBs (such as the extended emission in short hard GRBs, the Band spectrum ect…).

I will finish with some philosophical notes arguing on how   remarkable it would be  if  the   solution  to  some of   longstanding  problems  in astrophysics (including the enigmatic Ultra-High Cosmic Rays) could find  answers in the discovery of stable quark matter in the universe via a Quark-Nova.