Magnetic field strength effects on nucleosynthesis from neutron star merger outflows

K. Lund, G. C. McLaughlin, J. Miller, M. Mumpower

Submitted submitted (2023)

Magnetohydrodynamic turbulence drives the central engine of post-merger remnants, potentially powering both a nucleosynthetically active disk wind and the relativistic jet behind a short gamma ray burst. We explore the impact of the magnetic field on this engine by simulating three post-merger black hole accretion disks using general relativistic magnetohydrodynamics with Monte Carlo neutrino transport, in each case varying the initial magnetic field strength. We find increasing ejecta masses associated with increasing magnetic field strength. We find that a fairly robust main r -process pattern is produced in all three cases, scaled by the ejected mass. Changing the initial magnetic field strength has a considerable effect on the geometry of the outflow and hints at complex central engine dynamics influencing lanthanide outflows. We find that actinide production is especially sensitive to magnetic field strength, with overall actinide mass fraction calculated at 1 Gyr post-merger increasing by more than a factor of six with a tenfold increase in magnetic field strength. This hints at a possible connection to the variability in actinide enhancements exhibited by metal poor, $r$-process-enhanced stars.


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