Falk Herwig

Falk Herwig
Physics and Astronomy
Office: Elliott 214

PhD (University of Kiel and Astrophysikalisches Institut Potsdam)

Area of expertise

Astrophysics, origin of the elements, stellar hydrodynamics

Research interests

I am performing computer simulations of stars. I am especially interested in nuclear production of the elements (nuclear astrophysics) and hydrodynamic mixing processes. This is a multi-physics research area that offers plenty opportunities to interact and collaborate with all sorts of interesting people, including, e.g., nuclear physics experimentalists, CFD experts, observers, computational science and applied math types, cosmochemistry folks, to name just a few. A few of the key questions are:
  • How are the elements made in stars, especially in the first stars that have formed only a short while after the onset of structure formation in the Early Universe.
  • What are the hydrodynamic, turbulent properties of stellar convection in the deep stellar interior where the elements are made?
  • What are the quantitatively accurate stellar yields as a function of initial stellar mass and metallicity, e.g. for near-field cosmology applications?
  • How does rapid nuclear flash burning and turbulent stellar convection interact?
  • How do Super AGB stars evolve, and how many SNII have a S-AGB progenitor?
  • What is the mixing physics for the s-process, what is the nuclear production site for the r-process?
  • What happens when a giant star (like our sun will be) swallows a planet?