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  1. Abstract

    We carry out three-dimensional computations of the accretion rate onto an object (of sizeRsinkand massm) as it moves through a uniform medium at a subsonic speedv. The object is treated as a fully absorbing boundary (e.g., a black hole). In contrast to early conjectures, we show that for an accretor withRsinkRA=2Gm/v2in a gaseous medium with adiabatic indexγ= 5/3, the accretion rate is independent of Mach number and is determined only bymand the gas entropy. Our numerical simulations are conducted using two different numerical schemes via the Athena++ and Arepo hydrodynamics solvers, which reach nearly identical steady-state solutions. We find that pressure gradients generated by the isentropic compression of the flow near the accretor are sufficient to suspend much of the surrounding gas in a near-hydrostatic equilibrium, just as predicted from the spherical Bondi–Hoyle calculation. Indeed, the accretion rates for steady flow match the Bondi–Hoyle rate, and are indicative of isentropic flow for subsonic motion where no shocks occur. We also find that the accretion drag may be predicted using the Safronov number, Θ =RA/Rsink, and is much less than the dynamical friction for sufficiently small accretors (RsinkRA).

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    The gravitational redshift induced by stellar surface gravity is notoriously difficult to measure for non-degenerate stars, since its amplitude is small in comparison with the typical Doppler shift induced by stellar radial velocity. In this study, we make use of the large observational data set of the Gaia mission to achieve a significant reduction of noise caused by these random stellar motions. By measuring the differences in velocities between the components of the pairs of comoving stars and wide binaries, we are able to statistically measure the combined effects of gravitational redshift and convective blueshifting of spectral lines, and nullify the effect of the peculiar motions of the stars. For the subset of stars considered in this study, we find a positive correlation between the observed differences in Gaia radial velocities and the differences in surface gravity and convective blueshift inferred from effective temperature and luminosity measurements. The results rule out a null signal at the 5σ level for our full data set. Additionally, we study the subdominant effects of binary motion, and possible systematic errors in radial velocity measurements within Gaia. Results from the technique presented in this study are expected to improve significantly with data from the next Gaia data release. Such improvements could be used to constrain the mass–luminosity relation and stellar models that predict the magnitude of convective blueshift.

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  3. null (Ed.)
    ABSTRACT The hyper-velocity star S5-HVS1, ejected 5 Myr ago from the Galactic Centre at 1800 km s−1, was most likely produced by tidal break-up of a tight binary by the supermassive black hole SgrA*. Taking a Monte Carlo approach, we show that the former companion of S5-HVS1 was likely a main-sequence star between 1.2 and 6 M⊙ and was captured into a highly eccentric orbit with pericentre distance in the range of 1–10 au and semimajor axis about 103 au. We then explore the fate of the captured star. We find that the heat deposited by tidally excited stellar oscillation modes leads to runaway disruption if the pericentre distance is smaller than about $3\rm \, au$. Over the past 5 Myr, its angular momentum has been significantly modified by orbital relaxation, which may stochastically drive the pericentre inwards below $3\rm \, au$ and cause tidal disruption. We find an overall survival probability in the range 5 per cent to 50 per cent, depending on the local relaxation time in the close environment of the captured star, and the initial pericentre at capture. The pericentre distance of the surviving star has migrated to 10–100 au, making it potentially the most extreme member of the S-star cluster. From the ejection rate of S5-HVS1-like stars, we estimate that there may currently be a few stars in such highly eccentric orbits. They should be detectable (typically $K_{\rm s}\lesssim 18.5\,$ mag) by the GRAVITY instrument and by future Extremely Large Telescopes and hence provide an extraordinary probe of the spin of SgrA*. 
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  4. ABSTRACT The core collapse of massive, rapidly-rotating stars are thought to be the progenitors of long-duration gamma-ray bursts (GRB) and their associated hyperenergetic supernovae (SNe). At early times after the collapse, relatively low angular momentum material from the infalling stellar envelope will circularize into an accretion disc located just outside the black hole horizon, resulting in high accretion rates necessary to power a GRB jet. Temperatures in the disc mid-plane at these small radii are sufficiently high to dissociate nuclei, while outflows from the disc can be neutron-rich and may synthesize r-process nuclei. However, at later times, and for high progenitor angular momentum, the outer layers of the stellar envelope can circularize at larger radii ≳ 107 cm, where nuclear reactions can take place in the disc mid-plane (e.g. 4He + 16O → 20Ne + γ). Here we explore the effects of nuclear burning on collapsar accretion discs and their outflows by means of hydrodynamical α-viscosity torus simulations coupled to a 19-isotope nuclear reaction network, which are designed to mimic the late infall epochs in collapsar evolution when the viscous time of the torus has become comparable to the envelope fall-back time. Our results address several key questions, such as the conditions for quiescent burning and accretion versus detonation and the generation of 56Ni in disc outflows, which we show could contribute significantly to powering GRB SNe. Being located in the slowest, innermost layers of the ejecta, the latter could provide the radioactive heating source necessary to make the spectral signatures of r-process elements visible in late-time GRB-SNe spectra. 
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