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A Search for r-Process Elements in the VELA Supernova Remnant

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After a description of recent developments in the physics of rapid neutron capture in Type II supernovae and a discussion of the detectability of supernovae ejecta, we present the data from a search for Ge, Kr, Yb, Os, and Hg in five stars behind or within the Vela remnant. Only Ge II was detected, but its column density and the upper limits of the other species show no excess above the estimated contribution of ambient gas. Finally, we discuss the extent that clumping and the improved performance of the GHRS may make r-process ejecta from Vela detectable in the future.

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