Binary Stars

During my PhD my research focused on the study of binary stars. Particularly those systems in which one of the stars has reached the asymptotic giant branch (AGB) phase. During this phase, the star swells up and experiences mass loss in what we call “stellar winds”. These winds can potentially pollute the companion star, and even more, change the shape of the orbit of the system! In my research, I studied how this change occurs by simulating stars in the computer using a tool called AMUSE. An example of the simulations is shown in the video. If you want to see some nice movies of my research click here.

Before I started my PhD I worked on numerical simulations to study the interaction of planetary systems and particles in their debris disks. In order to do so, we chose 4 exoplanetary systems known to harbour circumstellar matter, more than one planet, and in which one of the planets lies in the so-called Habitable Zone. Likewise, we also studied the interactions of planets in our Solar System with the objects in its debris disk: the Kuiper belt.