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The Impact of Massive Binaries Through Cosmic Time

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - BinCosmos (The Impact of Massive Binaries Through Cosmic Time)

Reporting period: 2019-03-01 to 2020-08-31

Massive stars –being up to a million times brighter than ordinary stars like our Sun– play many premier roles in astrophysics. They act as the COSMIC ENGINES that transformed the pristine, dark and deserted Universe left after the Big Bang into the diverse modern Universe in which we live today. We use them as COSMIC PROBES to study distant galaxies and as extreme physical laboratories. They can give rise to dramatic COSMIC TRANSIENT including energetic explosions and gravitational waves.

A paradigm shift in our thinking about massive stars arrived with the realising that most of massive stars are not alone but member of close binary systems. The central question in BinCosmos is to assess the how bniarity impacts the lives of massive stars and the many roles they play.

The team produced several high impact results related to how binarity affects the statistics of the final explosions of massive stars, the ionizing radiation coming from stellar populations across cosmic time, the role of runaway stars and pair instability explosions and gravitational wave progenitors.

This project was terminated early as the PI was offered a faculty position in the US. Most results could not be completed within the duration of the grant period.

The project concerned fundamental research with no direct practical relevance for society, but it does contribute to endeavors to better understand our Cosmic History and the stars that produced the elements w e are made of.
While it lasted, the members of the BinCosmos team produced various high impact results. A total of 27 papers were produced coauthored by members of the team that relate to the topic of the project. These papers have already been cited 660 times (by June 2020, soure: NASA ADS database).

This project was terminated early as the PI was offered a faculty position in the US and no permission was given to complete the projects that had been started with ERC funding. Most results could not be completed within the duration of the grant period.