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Could Sirius A/B go supernova?

  1. Mar 22, 2007 #1
    I understand that main sequence/white-dwarf binary systems are the cause of type Ia supernovae. Is it possible that the Sirius A/B system could go supernova? The white dwarf, Sirius B, is an unusually large dwarf, about 1 solar-mass. While Sirius A is a 2.1 solar-mass main sequence star. The orbital radius is rather large, about 20au. So it seems there would be no ability of material to be sucked from A to B to make it go supernova. But some seem to think that there is another body in orbit with them that has perturbed Sirius B in the past. What would happen if this caused Sirius B to fall into Sirius A? Would there be a supernova in that case? Thanks.
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 24, 2007 #2


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    Interesting question. Here is a discussion on the subject.

    What are the progenitors of the supernova type 1A explosion?
    http://www.astro.rug.nl/~onderwys/ACTUEELONDERZOEK/JAAR2001/jakob/aozindex.html [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
  4. Mar 24, 2007 #3
    Does anyone know where Sirius B is right now in relation to Sirius A? Is B at present visibly orbiting away from A? Or is it eclipsing, or headed into A? Thanks.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
  5. Mar 24, 2007 #4


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    I'm sure someone has a model or simulation of the Sirius binary system. It certainly is getting a lot of attention. Somewhere I read a comment that the Sirius binary system is surrounded by an Oort-type cloud system, so presumably there are nearby masses which perturb the orbits of the stars.

    Meanwhile -

    http://mintaka.sdsu.edu/faculty/quyen/node1.html [Broken]

    http://www.star.le.ac.uk/wd/wd/current.shtml [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
  6. Apr 2, 2007 #5


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    Unlikely Sirius B will go SNIa. SN1a's progenitor stars are believed to be white dwarfs - which Sirius B is. The fuel source is believed to be a red giant companion star - which Sirius A is not. Albeit Sirius A will likely [not soon enough to worry about] evolve into one. The other factor is distance. It appears Sirius B is too distant from its future RG companion to accrete mass in the manner believed necessary to put on a really big show:

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