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Relativistic analogue of the Newtonian fluid energy equation with nucleosynthesis...

by Christian Y Cardall
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Physical Review D
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In Newtonian fluid dynamics simulations in which composition has been tracked by a nuclear reaction network, energy generation due to composition changes has generally been handled as a separate source term in the energy equation. A relativistic equation in conservative form for total fluid energy, obtained from the spacetime divergence of the stress-energy tensor, in principle encompasses such energy generation; but it is not explicitly manifest. An alternative relativistic energy equation in conservative form—in which the nuclear energy generation appears explicitly, and that reduces directly to the Newtonian internal+kinetic energy  in the appropriate limit—emerges naturally and self-consistently from the difference of the equation for total fluid energy and the equation for baryon number conservation multiplied by the average baryon mass m, when m is expressed in terms of contributions from the nuclear species in the fluid, and allowed to be mutable.