Schedule Jan 17, 2009
A New Computational Tool for Stellar Population Studies
Tassos Fragos (Northwestern Univ.)

An improved population synthesis code, that incorporates a realistic treatment of mass-transfer phases using a full binary stellar evolution code, is under development. An important feature of this code is its robust interface, which will allow seamless integration with stellar dynamics codes. We aim to produce new computational tool that will enable more realistic population studies of single and binary systems, both in isolation and in dense, dynamically active environments. For example, a major unanswered question in the study of X-ray binaries is the relative contribution of the field X-ray binary population and the globular cluster (dynamically formed) population in the observations of early type galaxies. Using for the first time an advanced population synthesis code, with detailed mass-transfer treatment, in combination with a proven stellar dynamics code (e.g CMC, Fregeau 2003) will allow us to realistically consider both formation channels, study their relative efficiency and disentangle their signature characteristics in the observed X-ray luminosity functions. In this talk, I will discuss the current status of this project, describe the already implemented features and future capabilities of the code, and finally present some preliminary simulations that demonstrate the potential of such an effort.

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