Supernovae Types Ia/II and Intracluster Medium Enrichment


We re-examine the respective roles played by supernovae (SNe) Types Ia and II in enriching the intracluster medium (ICM) of galaxy clusters, in light of the recent downward shift of the ASCA abundance ratios of alpha-elements to iron favoured by Ishimaru & Arimoto (1997, PASJ, 49, 1). Because of this shift, Ishimaru & Arimoto conclude that >50% of the ICM iron must have originated from within Type Ia SNe progenitors. A point not appreciated in their study, nor in most previous analyses, is the crucial dependence of such a conclusion upon the adopted massive star physics. Employing several alternative Type II SN yield compilations, we demonstrate how uncertainties in the treatment of convection and mass-loss can radically alter our perception of the relative importance of Type Ia and II SNe as ICM polluters. If mass-loss of the form favoured by Maeder (1992, A&A, 264, 105) or convection of the form favoured by Arnett (1996, Supernovae and Nucleosynthesis) is assumed, the effect upon the oxygen yields would lead us to conclude that Type Ia SNe play no part in polluting the ICM, in contradiction with Ishimaru & Arimoto. Apparent dichotomies still exist (e.g. the mean ICM neon-to-iron ratio implies a 100% Type II Fe origin, while the mean sulphur ratio indicates a 100% Type Ia origin) that cannot be reconciled with the currently available yield tables.Comment: 6 pages (incl 1 PostScript figure), LaTeX, also available at, MNRAS, in pres

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