APEC Lunch Seminar

Speaker: Francois Mernier (ESA)
Title: From Supernovae to Galaxies (and Beyond): What Metals in Hot Galactic and Cluster Atmospheres Tell Us
Date: Tue, Jan 28, 2020, 12:00 - 13:00
Place: Seminar Room A
Related File: 2474.pdf
Abstract: Whereas the extreme conditions of the first minutes after the Big Bang produced nearly all the hydrogen and helium in the Universe, the most common heavier elements - a.k.a. metals - are synthesized in the core of stars and in supernova explosions. Surprisingly, the very hot and diffuse intracluster medium (ICM), glowing in X-ray and detected in the large gravitational potential well of galaxy clusters, and groups and massive galaxies, contain a significant fraction of these metals. This means that the building blocks of life, synthesized by billions of supernovae over cosmic ages, are present even at the largest scales of the Universe, as they continuously enrich the ICM.

In this talk, we will see how measuring the abundance of some key-elements in the ICM of galaxy clusters, groups, and ellipticals observed with the current X-ray observatories helps to understand:
(i) what are the explosion mechanisms and the environmental conditions of Type Ia and core-collapse supernovae,
(ii) at which epoch of the cosmic history the ICM got enriched (and what are our best clues about it),
(iii) how metals get transported across the ICM. Finally, I will discuss how future X-ray observatories will push forward our understanding of the ICM enrichment.