A hyper-runaway white dwarf in Gaia DR2 as a Type Iax supernova primary remnant candidate

Nicholas J. Ruffini, Andrew R. Casey

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7 Citations (Scopus)


Observations of stellar remnants linked to Type Ia and Type Iax supernovae are necessary to fully understand their progenitors. Multiple progenitor scenarios predict a population of kicked donor remnants and partially burnt primary remnants, both moving with relatively high velocity. But only a handful of examples consistent with these two predicted populations have been observed. Here we report the likely first known example of an unbound white dwarf that is consistent with being the fully cooled primary remnant to a Type Iax supernova. The candidate, LP 93-21, is travelling with a galactocentric velocity of vgal ≲ 605 km s−1, and is gravitationally unbound to the Milky Way. We rule out an extragalactic origin. The Type Iax supernova ejection scenario is consistent with its peculiar unbound trajectory, given anomalous elemental abundances are detected in its photosphere via spectroscopic followup. This discovery reflects recent models that suggest stellar ejections likely occur often. Unfortunately the intrinsic faintness of white dwarfs, and the uncertainty associated with their direct progenitor systems, makes it difficult to detect and confirm such donors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)420-426
Number of pages7
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2019


  • Dynamics
  • Stars: individual: LP 93-21
  • Stars: kinematics
  • Supernovae: Type Ia
  • Type Iax
  • White dwarfs

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