2010 Student Research Conference:
23rd Annual Student Research Conference

Influence of the Stellar IMF on the Population of Double White Dwarf Stars in the Galaxy
Zach O. Haralson
Dr. Vayujeet Gokhale, Faculty Mentor

The primary aim of this exercise is to compare populations of Double White Dwarf (DWD) systems generated by using different published forms of the Galaxy's Initial Mass Function (IMF) and Star Formation Rate (SFR). We focus on writing a numerical code to synthesize a population of stars based on analytic expressions of the Galaxy's IMF and SFR. We then use a stellar evolution code developed by Hurley (2002) to evolve these stars to the present epoch. We concentrate on the population of DWD systems that are expected to be strong sources of Gravitational Wave Radiation (GWR) and hence, ideal targets for the space-based GWR detector LISA. We analyze the distributions of these different DWD populations by plotting them in the GWR strain-frequency parameter space. We also compare the relative numbers of the different species (He-He, He-CO, CO-CO etc.) of DWD systems obtained using the different forms of the IMF.

Keywords: Initial Mass Function, Gravitational Wave Radiation, Population Synthesis


Presentation Type: Poster

Session: 10-1
Location: SUB-GEO
Time: 4:15

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