Urca process

Alternative definitions (2), class: vernacular (0)
Term: Urca process

A cycle of nuclear reactions, primarily among the iron group of elements, accompanied by a high rate of neutrino formation. Neutrinos carry away energy quickly leading to the cooling of the stellar core and a dramatic drop in the pressure. Due to this process in pre-supernova stars, the core becomes unable to support the weight of the overlying layers. These layers collapse onto the core and subsequently rebound and escape in the supernova explosion.

Created 2023.04.16
Last Modified 2023.04.16
Contributed by Ryan McGranaghan