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  1. Abstract

    The astrophysical environments capable of triggering heavy-element synthesis via rapid neutron capture (ther-process) remain uncertain. While binary neutron star mergers (NSMs) are known to forger-process elements, certain rare supernovae (SNe) have been theorized to supplement—or even dominate—r-production by NSMs. However, the most direct evidence for such SNe, unusual reddening of the emission caused by the high opacities ofr-process elements, has not been observed. Recent work identified the distribution ofr-process material within the SN ejecta as a key predictor of the ease with which signals associated withr-process enrichment could be discerned. Though this distribution results from hydrodynamic processes at play during the SN explosion, thus far it has been treated only in a parameterized way. We use hydrodynamic simulations to model how disk winds—the alleged locus ofr-production in rare SNe—mix with initiallyr-process-free ejecta. We study mixing as a function of the wind mass, wind duration, and the initial SN explosion energy, and find that it increases with the first two of these and decreases with the third. This suggests that SNe accompanying the longest long-duration gamma-ray bursts are promising places to search for signs ofr-process enrichment. We use semianalytic radiation transport to connect hydrodynamics to electromagnetic observables, allowing us to assess the mixing level at which the presence ofr-process material can be diagnosed from SN light curves. Analytic arguments constructed atop this foundation imply that a wind-drivenr-process-enriched SN model is unlikely to explain standard energetic SNe.

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  2. Abstract Active galactic nuclei (AGN) show a range of morphologies and dynamical properties, which are determined not only by parameters intrinsic to the central engine but also their interaction with the surrounding environment. We investigate the connection of kiloparsec scale AGN jet properties to their intrinsic parameters and surroundings. This is done using a suite of 40 relativistic hydrodynamic simulations spanning a wide range of engine luminosities and opening angles. We explore AGN jet propagation with different ambient density profiles, including r −2 (self-similar solution) and r −1 , which is more relevant for AGN host environments. While confirmation awaits future 3D studies, the Fanaroff–Riley (FR) morphological dichotomy arises naturally in our 2D models. Jets with low energy density compared to the ambient medium produce a center-brightened emissivity distribution, while emissivity from relatively higher energy density jets is dominated by the jet head. We observe recollimation shocks in our simulations that can generate bright spots along the spine of the jet, providing a possible explanation for “knots” observed in AGN jets. We additionally find a scaling relation between the number of knots and the jet-head-to-surroundings energy density ratio. This scaling relation is generally consistent with the observations of the jets in M87 and Cygnus A. Our model also correctly predicts M87 as FRI and Cygnus A as FRII. Our model can be used to relate jet dynamical parameters such as jet head velocity, jet opening angle, and external pressure to jet power, and ambient density estimates. 
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  3. Abstract We report multiwavelength observations and characterization of the ultraluminous transient AT 2021lwx (ZTF20abrbeie; aka “Barbie”) identified in the alert stream of the Zwicky Transient Facility (ZTF) using a Recommender Engine For Intelligent Transient Tracking filter on the ANTARES alert broker. From a spectroscopically measured redshift of 0.995, we estimate a peak-observed pseudo-bolometric luminosity of log( L max / [ erg s − 1 ] ) = 45.7 from slowly fading ztf- g and ztf- r light curves spanning over 1000 observer-frame days. The host galaxy is not detected in archival Pan-STARRS observations ( g > 23.3 mag), implying a lower limit to the outburst amplitude of more than 5 mag relative to the quiescent host galaxy. Optical spectra exhibit strong emission lines with narrow cores from the H Balmer series and ultraviolet semi-forbidden lines of Si iii ] λ 1892, C iii ] λ 1909, and  C ii ] λ 2325. Typical nebular lines in Active Galactic Nucleus (AGN) spectra from ions such as [O ii ] and [O iii ] are not detected. These spectral features, along with the smooth light curve that is unlike most AGN flaring activity and the luminosity that exceeds any observed or theorized supernova, lead us to conclude that AT 2021lwx is most likely an extreme tidal disruption event (TDE). Modeling of ZTF photometry with MOSFiT suggests that the TDE was between a ≈14 M ⊙ star and a supermassive black hole of mass M BH ∼ 10 8 M ⊙ . Continued monitoring of the still-evolving light curve along with deep imaging of the field once AT 2021lwx has faded can test this hypothesis and potentially detect the host galaxy. 
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  4. null (Ed.)
    ABSTRACT The merger of two neutron stars produces an outflow of radioactive heavy nuclei. Within a second of merger, the central remnant is expected to also launch a relativistic jet, which shock-heats and disrupts a portion of the radioactive ejecta. Within a few hours, emission from the radioactive material gives rise to an ultraviolet, optical, and infrared transient (a kilonova). We use the endstates of a suite of 2D relativistic hydrodynamic simulations of jet–ejecta interaction as initial conditions for multidimensional Monte Carlo radiation transport simulations of the resulting viewing angle-dependent light curves and spectra starting at $1.5\, \mathrm{h}$ after merger. We find that on this time-scale, jet shock heating does not affect the kilonova emission for the jet parameters we survey. However, the jet disruption to the density structure of the ejecta does change the light curves. The jet carves a channel into the otherwise spheroidal ejecta, revealing the hot, inner regions. As seen from near (≲30°) the jet axis, the kilonova is brighter by a factor of a few and bluer. The strength of this effect depends on the jet parameters, since the light curves of more heavily disrupted ejecta are more strongly affected. The light curves and spectra are also more heavily modified in the ultraviolet than in the optical. 
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  5. null (Ed.)