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  1. Abstract The cosmic evolution of the chemical elements from the Big Bang to the present time is driven by nuclear fusion reactions inside stars and stellar explosions. A cycle of matter recurrently re-processes metal-enriched stellar ejecta into the next generation of stars. The study of cosmic nucleosynthesis and this matter cycle requires the understanding of the physics of nuclear reactions, of the conditions at which the nuclear reactions are activated inside the stars and stellar explosions, of the stellar ejection mechanisms through winds and explosions, and of the transport of the ejecta towards the next cycle, from hot plasma to cold, star-forming gas. Due to the long timescales of stellar evolution, and because of the infrequent occurrence of stellar explosions, observational studies are challenging, as they have biases in time and space as well as different sensitivities related to the various astronomical methods. Here, we describe in detail the astrophysical and nuclear-physical processes involved in creating two radioactive isotopes useful in such studies, $^{26}\mathrm{Al}$ and $^{60}\mathrm{Fe}$ . Due to their radioactive lifetime of the order of a million years, these isotopes are suitable to characterise simultaneously the processes of nuclear fusion reactions and of interstellar transport. We describe and discuss the nuclear reactions involved in the production and destruction of $^{26}\mathrm{Al}$ and $^{60}\mathrm{Fe}$ , the key characteristics of the stellar sites of their nucleosynthesis and their interstellar journey after ejection from the nucleosynthesis sites. This allows us to connect the theoretical astrophysical aspects to the variety of astronomical messengers presented here, from stardust and cosmic-ray composition measurements, through observation of $\gamma$ rays produced by radioactivity, to material deposited in deep-sea ocean crusts and to the inferred composition of the first solids that have formed in the Solar System. We show that considering measurements of the isotopic ratio of $^{26}\mathrm{Al}$ to $^{60}\mathrm{Fe}$ eliminate some of the unknowns when interpreting astronomical results, and discuss the lessons learned from these two isotopes on cosmic chemical evolution. This review paper has emerged from an ISSI-BJ Team project in 2017–2019, bringing together nuclear physicists, astronomers, and astrophysicists in this inter-disciplinary discussion. 
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  2. Liu, W. ; Wang, Y. ; Guo, B. ; Tang, X. ; Zeng, S. (Ed.)
    Experimental studies on astrophysical reactions involving radioactive isotopes (RI) often accompany technical challenges. Studies on such nuclear reactions have been conducted at the low-energy RI beam separator CRIB, operated by Center for Nuclear Study, the University of Tokyo. We discuss two cases of astrophysical reaction studies at CRIB; one is for the 7 Be+ n reactions which may affect the primordial 7 Li abundance in the Big-Bang nucleosynthesis, and the other is for the 22 Mg( α , p ) reaction relevantin X-raybursts. 
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  3. null (Ed.)
  4. A public deep and wide science enabling survey will be needed to discover these black holes and supernovae, and to cover the area large enough for cosmic infrared background to be reliably studied. This enabling survey will find a large number of other transients and enable supernova cosmology up to z 5. 
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  5. Abstract

    Nuclear astrophysics is a field at the intersection of nuclear physics and astrophysics, which seeks to understand the nuclear engines of astronomical objects and the origin of the chemical elements. This white paper summarizes progress and status of the field, the new open questions that have emerged, and the tremendous scientific opportunities that have opened up with major advances in capabilities across an ever growing number of disciplines and subfields that need to be integrated. We take a holistic view of the field discussing the unique challenges and opportunities in nuclear astrophysics in regards to science, diversity, education, and the interdisciplinarity and breadth of the field. Clearly nuclear astrophysics is a dynamic field with a bright future that is entering a new era of discovery opportunities.

     
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  6. ABSTRACT

    We present a new method of matching observations of Type-I (thermonuclear) X-ray bursts with models, comparing the predictions of a semi-analytic ignition model with X-ray observations of the accretion-powered millisecond pulsar SAX J1808.4–3658 in outburst. We used a Bayesian analysis approach to marginalize over the parameters of interest and determine parameters such as fuel composition, distance/anisotropy factors, neutron star mass, and neutron star radius. Our study includes a treatment of the system inclination effects, inferring that the rotation axis of the system is inclined $\left(69^{+4}_{-2}\right)^\circ$ from the observers line of sight, assuming a flat disc model. This method can be applied to any accreting source that exhibits Type-I X-ray bursts. We find a hydrogen mass fraction of $0.57^{+0.13}_{-0.14}$ and CNO metallicity of $0.013^{+0.006}_{-0.004}$ for the accreted fuel is required by the model to match the observed burst energies, for a distance to the source of $3.3^{+0.3}_{-0.2}\, \mathrm{kpc}$. We infer a neutron star mass of $1.5^{+0.6}_{-0.3}\, \mathrm{M}_{\odot }$ and radius of $11.8^{+1.3}_{-0.9}\, \mathrm{km}$ for a surface gravity of $1.9^{+0.7}_{-0.4}\times 10^{14}\, \mathrm{cm}\, \mathrm{s}^{-2}$ for SAX J1808.4–3658.

     
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