929 research outputs found

    Chemical evolution of the Milky Way: the origin of phosphorus

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    Context. Recently, for the first time the abundance of P has been measured in disk stars. This provides the opportunity of comparing the observed abundances with predictions from theoretical models. Aims. We aim at predicting the chemical evolution of P in the Milky Way and compare our results with the observed P abundances in disk stars in order to put constraints on the P nucleosynthesis. Methods. To do that we adopt the two-infall model of galactic chemical evolution, which is a good model for the Milky Way, and compute the evolution of the abundances of P and Fe. We adopt stellar yields for these elements from different sources. The element P should have been formed mainly in Type II supernovae. Finally, Fe is mainly produced by Type Ia supernovae. Results. Our results confirm that to reproduce the observed trend of [P/Fe] vs. [Fe/H] in disk stars, P is formed mainly in massive stars. However, none of the available yields for P can reproduce the solar abundance of this element. In other words, to reproduce the data one should assume that massive stars produce more P than predicted by a factor of ~ 3. Conclusions. We conclude that all the available yields of P from massive stars are largely underestimated and that nucleosynthesis calculations should be revised. We also predict the [P/Fe] expected in halo stars.Comment: Accepted for publication in A&A (minor changes with respect to the submitted version

    Sulphur abundances in halo stars from Multiplet 3 at 1045 nm

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    Sulphur is a volatile alpha-element which is not locked into dust grains in the interstellar medium (ISM). Hence, its abundance does not need to be corrected for dust depletion when comparing the ISM to the stellar atmospheres. The abundance of sulphur in the photosphere of metal-poor stars is a matter of debate: according to some authors, [S/Fe] versus [Fe/H] forms a plateau at low metallicity, while, according to other studies, there is a large scatter or perhaps a bimodal distribution. In metal-poor stars sulphur is detectable by its lines of Mult.1 at 920 nm, but this range is heavily contaminated by telluric absorptions, and one line of the multiplet is blended by the hydrogen Paschen zeta line. We study the possibility of using Mult. 3 (at 1045 nm) for deriving the sulphur abundance because this range, now observable at the VLT with the infra-red spectrograph CRIRES, is little contaminated by telluric absorption and not affected by blends at least in metal-poor stars. We compare the abundances derived from Multiplets 1 and 3, taking into account NLTE corrections and 3D effects. Here we present the results for a sample of four stars, although the scatter is less pronounced than in previous analysis, we cannot find a plateau in [S/Fe], and confirm the scatter of the sulphur abundance at low metallicity.Comment: to be published in Astronomische Nachrichte

    Cu I resonance lines in turn-off stars of NGC 6752 and NGC 6397. Effects of granulation from CO5BOLD models

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    Context. Copper is an element whose interesting evolution with metallicity is not fully understood. Observations of copper abundances rely on a very limited number of lines, the strongest are the Cu I lines of Mult. 1 at 324.7 nm and 327.3 nm which can be measured even at extremely low metallicities. Aims. We investigate the quality of these lines as abundance indicators. Method. We measure these lines in two turn-off (TO) stars in the Globular Cluster NGC 6752 and two TO stars in the Globular Cluster NGC 6397 and derive abundances with 3D hydrodynamical model atmospheres computed with the CO5BOLD code. These abundances are compared to the Cu abundances measured in giant stars of the same clusters, using the lines of Mult. 2 at 510.5 nm and 578.2 nm. Results. The abundances derived from the lines of Mult. 1 in TO stars differ from the abundances of giants of the same clusters. This is true both using CO5BOLD models and using traditional 1D model atmospheres. The LTE 3D corrections for TO stars are large, while they are small for giant stars. Conclusions. The Cu I resonance lines of Mult. 1 are not reliable abundance indicators. It is likely that departures from LTE should be taken into account to properly describe these lines, although it is not clear if these alone can account for the observations. An investigation of these departures is indeed encouraged for both dwarfs and giants. Our recommendation to those interested in the study of the evolution of copper abundances is to rely on the measurements in giants, based on the lines of Mult. 2. We caution, however, that NLTE studies may imply a revision in all the Cu abundances, both in dwarfs and giants.Comment: to be published on A\&

    An upper limit on the sulphur abundance in HE 1327-2326

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    Context: Star HE 1327-2326 is a unique object, with the lowest measured iron abundance ([Fe/H] ~ -6) and a peculiar chemical composition that includes large overabundances of C, N, and O with respect to iron. One important question is whether the chemical abundances in this star reflect the chemical composition of the gas cloud from which it was formed or if they have been severely affected by other processes, such as dust-gas winnowing. Aims: We measure or provide an upper limit to the abundance of the volatile element sulphur, which can help to discriminate between the two scenarios. Methods: We observed HE 1327-2326 with the high resolution infra-red spectrograph CRIRES at the VLT to observe the S I lines of Multiplet 3 at 1045 nm. Results: We do not detect the S I line. A 3sigma$upper limit on the equivalent width (EW) of any line in our spectrum is EW<0.66 pm. Using either one-dimensional static or three-dimensional hydrodynamical model-atmospheres, this translates into a robust upper limit of [S/H]<-2.6. Conclusions: This upper limit does not provide conclusive evidence for or against dust-gas winnowing, and the evidence coming from other elements (e.g., Na and Ti) is also inconclusive or contradictory. The formation of dust in the atmosphere versus an origin of the metals in a metal-poor supernova with extensive "fall-back" are not mutually exclusive. It is possible that dust formation distorts the peculiar abundance pattern created by a supernova with fall-back, thus the abundance ratios in HE 1327-2326 may be used to constrain the properties of the supernova(e) that produced its metals, but with some caution.Comment: Accepted by Astronomy & Astrophysics Minor typos in the abstract correcte

    Solar abundances and 3D model atmospheres

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    We present solar photospheric abundances for 12 elements from optical and near-infrared spectroscopy. The abundance analysis was conducted employing 3D hydrodynamical (CO5BOLD) as well as standard 1D hydrostatic model atmospheres. We compare our results to others with emphasis on discrepancies and still lingering problems, in particular exemplified by the pivotal abundance of oxygen. We argue that the thermal structure of the lower solar photosphere is very well represented by our 3D model. We obtain an excellent match of the observed center-to-limb variation of the line-blanketed continuum intensity, also at wavelengths shortward of the Balmer jump.Comment: Contributed paper, to be published in the proceedings of IAU Symposium 265, eds. K. Cunha, M. Spite, and B. Barbuy, Cambridge University Press (CUP). 2 figures, 4 page

    The Galactic evolution of sulphur as traced by globular clusters

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    Sulphur is an important, volatile alpha element but its role in the Galactic chemical evolution is still uncertain. We derive the S abundances in RGB stars in three Galactic globular clusters (GC) that cover a wide metallicity range (-2.3<[Fe/H]<-1.2), namely M4, M22, and M30. The halo field stars show a large scatter in the [S/Fe] ratio in this metallicity span, which is inconsistent with canonical chemical evolution models. To date, very few measurements of [S/Fe] exist for stars in GCs, which are good tracers of the chemical enrichment of their environment. However, some light and alpha elements show star-to-star variations within individual GCs and it is yet unclear whether sulphur also varies between GC stars. We used the the infrared spectrograph CRIRES to obtain high-resolution (R~50000), high signal-to-noise (SNR~200 per px) spectra in the region of the S I multiplet 3 at 1045 nm for 15 GC stars selected from the literature (6 stars in M4, 6 stars in M22 and 3 stars in M30). Multiplet 3 is better suited for S abundance derivation than the more commonly used lines of multiplet 1 at 920 nm, since its lines are not blended by telluric absorption or other stellar features at low metallicity. We used spectral synthesis to derive the [S/Fe] ratio of the stars assuming local thermodynamic equilibrium (LTE). We find mean [S/Fe] = 0.58 +/- 0.01 +/- 0.20 dex (statistical and systematic error) for M4, [S/Fe] = 0.57+/-0.01+/-0.19 dex for M22, and [S/Fe] = 0.55+/-0.02+/-0.16 dex for M30. The negative NLTE corrections are estimated to be in the order of the systematic uncertainties. With the tentative exception of two stars with measured high S abundances, we conclude that sulphur behaves like a typical alpha element in the studied Galactic GCs, showing enhanced abundances with respect to the solar value at metallicities below [Fe/H] = -1.0 dex without a considerable spread.Comment: 9 pages, 7 figures, accepted for publication in A&

    The solar photospheric abundance of hafnium and thorium. Results from CO5BOLD 3D hydrodynamic model atmospheres

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    Context: The stable element hafnium (Hf) and the radioactive element thorium (Th) were recently suggested as a suitable pair for radioactive dating of stars. The applicability of this elemental pair needs to be established for stellar spectroscopy. Aims: We aim at a spectroscopic determination of the abundance of Hf and Th in the solar photosphere based on a \cobold 3D hydrodynamical model atmosphere. We put this into a wider context by investigating 3D abundance corrections for a set of G- and F-type dwarfs. Method: High-resolution, high signal-to-noise solar spectra were compared to line synthesis calculations performed on a solar CO5BOLD model. For the other atmospheres, we compared synthetic spectra of CO5BOLD 3D and associated 1D models. Results: For Hf we find a photospheric abundance A(Hf)=0.87+-0.04, in good agreement with a previous analysis, based on 1D model atmospheres. The weak Th ii 401.9 nm line constitutes the only Th abundance indicator available in the solar spectrum. It lies in the red wing of an Ni-Fe blend exhibiting a non-negligible convective asymmetry. Accounting for the asymmetry-related additional absorption, we obtain A(Th)=0.09+-0.03, consistent with the meteoritic abundance, and about 0.1 dex lower than obtained in previous photospheric abundance determinations. Conclusions: Only for the second time, to our knowledge, has am non-negligible effect of convective line asymmetries on an abundance derivation been highlighted. Three-dimensional hydrodynamical simulations should be employed to measure Th abundances in dwarfs if similar blending is present, as in the solar case. In contrast, 3D effects on Hf abundances are small in G- to mid F-type dwarfs and sub-giants, and 1D model atmospheres can be conveniently used.Comment: A&A, in pres
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