The universe exhibits a wide range of explosive phenomena: Massive stars end their lives with a bright explosion, a "supernova", which outshines the galaxy in which the explosion takes place; Much brighter, and more rare "gamma-ray burst" explosions outshine the entire observed universe for the few seconds they are active; "X-ray flashes" and "low luminosity gamma-ray bursts" lie in between, with intermediate rates and luminosities. Our theoretical understanding of all these explosion classes is largely phenomenological and incomplete.
Our theoretical research phocuses on understanding the physics driving cosmic explosions, with a focus on theoretical predictions that allow to test and constrain models using observations. Recent technological advances enable the construction of very wide field optical/UV cameras, which are revolutionizing our ability to systematically detect and study tranient cosmic explosions. Our close collaboration with the observational group at the WIS, which is a leading observational groups in this area, leads to frutiful theoretical progress and shapes the goals of the observational developments.