Testing the Supernova Hypothesis

Kevin Konrad, David Graham

Testing the Supernova Hypothesis Using 3He and 60Fe in Marine Sediments: This work builds off of the groundbreaking research of Wallner et al. (2016) and  Ludwig et al. (2016) on the existence of supernova ejecta deposited in deep sea sediment cores and ferromanganese deposits. This research projects focuses on using 3He concentrations archived in deep-sea sediment cores to help define the existence, timing and environmental impact of supernova ejecta deposited within the last five million years. Since 3He in sediments is dominated by the presence of interplanetry dust particles and is not supplied in significant amounts from supernova ejecta, the new results would provide further support for the supernova hypothesis if there is no relationship between 3He and 60Fe. In addition, I seek to provide a refined, higher-resolution age model for these deep-sea cores.
Full core photographs of ELT 49-53 (Southern Indian Ocean). This image covers over nine meters of sediment and millions of years of Earth’s history.
A record of 60Fe detection in Ferromanganese crusts (top) and low-accumulation rate sediment cores (bottom) as a function of time. From: Fields, B. D., Ellis, J. R., Binns, W. R., Breitschwerdt, D., de Nolfo, G. A., Diehl, R., … & Fitoussi, C. (2019). Near-Earth Supernova Explosions: Evidence, Implications, and Opportunities. arXiv preprint arXiv:1903.04589.