The merger rate of extremely low mass white dwarf binaries: links to the formation of AM CVn stars and underluminous supernovae★

@article{Brown2010TheMR,
  title={The merger rate of extremely low mass white dwarf binaries: links to the formation of AM CVn stars and underluminous supernovae★},
  author={Warren R. Brown and Mukremin Kilic and Carlos Allende Prieto and Scott J. Kenyon},
  journal={Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters},
  year={2010},
  volume={411},
  pages={31}
}
We study a complete, colour-selected sample of double-degenerate binary systems containing extremely low mass (ELM) ≤0.25 M⊙ white dwarfs (WDs). We show, for the first time, that Milky Way disc ELM WDs have a merger rate of approximately 4 × 10−5 yr−1 due to gravitational wave radiation. The merger end product depends on the mass ratio of the binary. The ELM WD systems that undergo stable mass transfer can account for ≳3 per cent of AM Canum Venaticorum (AM CVn) stars. More importantly, the ELM… Expand

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