A New Approach to Modeling Interacting Galaxies

The computer modeling of interacting galaxies is of course no simple matter. There are so many characteristics to consider, the speed and direction of the galaxies just being one of them. In order to simplify the process of modeling the interaction of galaxies a group of astronomers and computer scientists from Iowa, Tennessee and North Carolina, have banded together to develop the Automatic Galaxy Collision (AGC) software. To learn more about this software, and how it was used to model the unusual galaxy pair known as Arp 284, see their proceedings pre-print here.

First 3D Computer Simulation of 15.5 Solar Mass Supernova

If you haven’t noticed, most computer models, or simulations of supernovae explosions are merely two-dimensional. This is largely because of the computing speed and processing required to perform a full three dimensional computer model is often prohibitive. In a paper submitted to the Astrophysical Journal, available online now here, German astrophysicists announced today the first successful 3D modeling of a 15.5 solar mass blue supergiant supernova explosion. If you think there’s a lot of violence reported in today’s news stories, consider “iron-dominated fingers overtaking oxygen-rich bullets.” But don’t forget, that without such cosmic fireworks, we could not exist, as these explosions produce much of the heavier chemical elements which make up you and me.