Supernova theory, numerical and analytic, has made remarkable progress in the past decade. This progress was made possible by more sophisticated simulation tools, especially for neutrino transport, improved microphysics, and deeper insights into the role of hydrodynamic instabilities. Violent, large-scale nonradial mass motions are generic in supernova cores. The neutrino-heating mechanism, aided by nonradial flows, drives explosions, albeit low-energy ones, of O-Ne-Mg-core and some Fe-core progenitors. The characteristics of the neutrino emission from newborn neutron stars were revised, new features of the gravitational-wave signals were discovered, our notion of supernova nucleosynthesis was shattered, and our understanding of pulsar kicks and explosion asymmetries was significantly improved. But simulations also suggest that neutrino-powered explosions might not explain the most energetic supernovae and hypernovae, which seem to demand magnetorotational driving. Now that modeling is being advanced from two to three dimensions, more realism, new perspectives, and hopefully answers to long-standing questions are coming into reach.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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