Towards an understanding of the origin of diversity in massive star explosions
Dr. Joseph Anderson
Core-collapse supernovae (CCSNe) are the explosive deaths of massive stars. These events are thought to be produced when their iron cores implode once they can no longer support themselves against collapse. The last few decades has seen significant advances in our understanding of the explosion mechanism and probable progenitors of CCSNe, but important questions remain. A large spectral and photometric diversity is observed in the transient behaviour of CCSNe that implies differences in initial progenitor properties, that then determine the stellar evolutionary path taken to produce specific pre-SN properties, that then explode producing observed SNe influenced by the exact details of core-collapse. Here, I will review the current consensus on CCSNe, their progenitors and their explosion. I will then describe a few avenues of research of myself and collaborators, including a recent meta analysis of the mass of radioactive material produced by different CCSN types and how this questions some current thinking in the literature. Finally, I will outline the important outstanding questions in the field and suggest how we may answers these in the coming decade.