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Neutron-rich isotopes in the outer crust of neutron stars

By Stefan Rüster, Matthias Hempel, Matthias Hanauske and Jürgen Schaffner-bielich


Neutron stars are the remnants of core collapse supernovae with typical sizes of about 10 km but a mass comparable to the mass of our sun. The outermost layer of a (cold) neutron star consist of a thin atmosphere of atoms for mass densities up to about 10 4 g/cm 3. For larger densities, a lattice of nuclei forms which is surrounded by free electrons — the so called outer crust of the neutron star. With increasing (electron) density, the nuclei in the lattice become more and more neutron-rich. The equation of state in this region of the neutron star was originally calculated by Bethe, Pethick and Sutherland (BPS) in a classic paper in 1971 [1]. The inner crust of the neutron star begins at the neutron-drip density of ρ ∼ 4.3 · 1011 g/cm3, when the density gets so high that neutrons start to drip out of th

Year: 2010
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