492 research outputs found

    Fluorine production in intermediate-mass stars

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    The 19F production during the first dozen thermal pulses of AGB stars with (M=3,Z=0.02), (M=6,Z=0.02) and (M=3,Z=0.001) is investigated on grounds of detailed stellar models and of revised rates for 15N(a,g)19F and 18O(a,g)22Ne. These calculations confirm an early expectation that 19F {\it is} produced in AGB thermal pulses. They also enlarge substantially these previous results by showing that the variations of the level of 19F production during the evolution is very sensitive to the maximum temperature reached at the base of the pulse. These variations are analyzed in detail, and are shown to result from a subtle balance between different nuclear effects (mainly 19F production or destruction in a pulse, and 15N synthesis during the interpulse), possibly super-imposed on dilution effects in more or less extended pulse convective tongues. Our calculations, as most others, do not predict the third dredge-up self- consistently. When parametrized, it appears that our models of intermediate-mass AGB stars are able to account only for the lowest 19F overabundances observed in solar-metallicity MS, S and C stars. That conclusion is expected to hold true for low-mass stars when F production results from secondary 13C only. Massive AGB stars, on the other hand, are not expected to build up large surface F abundanc- es. Therefore, the large F overabundance reported for the super Li-rich star WZ Cas (where HBB is supposed to be operating) remains unexplained so far. Our results for the (M=3,Z=0.001) star indicate that F surface overabundances can also be expected in low-metallicity stars provided that third dredge-ups occur after the early cool pulses. The relative increase in the surface 19F/12C ratio is, however, lower in the low-metallicity than in the solar-metallicity star. No observations areComment: 27 pages, includes figures, postcript file (A&A format, 15 pages including figures) can be found via anonymous ftp at ftp://obsftp.unige.ch/pub/mowlavi/fluor.ps.gz ; accepted by A&

    Stellar variability in open clusters. I. A new class of variable stars in NGC 3766

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    Aims. We analyze the population of periodic variable stars in the open cluster NGC 3766 based on a 7-year multi-band monitoring campaign conducted on the 1.2 m Swiss Euler telescope at La Silla, Chili. Methods. The data reduction, light curve cleaning and period search procedures, combined with the long observation time line, allow us to detect variability amplitudes down to the milli-magnitude level. The variability properties are complemented with the positions in the color-magnitude and color-color diagrams to classify periodic variable stars into distinct variability types. Results. We find a large population (36 stars) of new variable stars between the red edge of slowly pulsating B (SPB) stars and the blue edge of delta Sct stars, a region in the Hertzsprung-Russell (HR) diagram where no pulsation is predicted to occur based on standard stellar models. The bulk of their periods ranges from 0.1 to 0.7 d, with amplitudes between 1 and 4 mmag for the majority of them. About 20% of stars in that region of the HR diagram are found to be variable, but the number of members of this new group is expected to be higher, with amplitudes below our milli-magnitude detection limit. The properties of this new group of variable stars are summarized, and arguments set forth in favor of a pulsation origin of the variability, with g-modes sustained by stellar rotation. Potential members of this new class of low-amplitude periodic (most probably pulsating) A and late-B variables in the literature are discussed. We additionally identify 16 eclipsing binary, 13 SPB, 14 delta Sct and 12 gamma Dor candidates, as well as 72 fainter periodic variables. All are new discoveries. Conclusions. We encourage to search for the existence of this new class of variables in other young open clusters, especially in those hosting a rich population of Be stars.Comment: Accepted for publication in A&A. Size of pdf file ~7Mo. Figures 12, 13, 14 and in the Appendix are of lower quality. Full quality images published in A&

    Long Period Variable Stars: galactic populations and infrared luminosity calibrations

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    In this paper HIPPARCOS astrometric and kinematic data are used to calibrate both infrared luminosities and kinematical parameters of Long Period Variable stars (LPVs). Individual absolute K and IRAS 12 and 25 luminosities of 800 LPVs are determined and made available in electronic form. The estimated mean kinematics is analyzed in terms of galactic populations. LPVs are found to belong to galactic populations ranging from the thin disk to the extended disk. An age range and a lower limit of the initial mass is given for stars of each population. A difference of 1.3mag in K for the upper limit of the Asymptotic Giant Branch is found between the disk and old disk galactic populations, confirming its dependence on the mass in the main sequence. LPVs with a thin envelope are distinguished using the estimated mean IRAS luminosities. The level of attraction (in the classification sense) of each group for the usual classifying parameters of LPVs (variability and spectral types) is examined.Comment: Accepted for publication in A&A (May 2001). 13 page

    CNONa and 12C/13C in giants of 10 open clusters

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    Evolved low-mass stars of a wide range of metallicity bear signatures of a non-standard mixing event in their surface abundances of Li, C, and N, and in their 12C/13C ratio. A Na overabundance has also been reported in some giants of open clusters but remains controversial. The cause of the extra-mixing has been attributed to thermohaline convection that should take place after the RGB bump for low-mass stars and on the early-AGB for more massive objects. To track the occurrence of this process over a wide mass range, we derive in a homogeneous way the abundances of C, N, O, and Na, as well as the 12C/13C ratio in a sample of 31 giants of 10 open clusters with turn-off masses from 1.7 to 3.1 Msun. A group of first ascent red giants with M/Msun \leq 2.5 exhibits lower [N/C] ratios than those measured in clump giants of the same mass range, suggesting an additional increase in the [N/C] ratio after the first dredge-up. The sodium abundances corrected from NLTE are found to be about solar. [Na/Fe] shows a slight increase of 0.10 dex as a function of stellar mass in the 1.8 to 3.2 Msun range covered by our sample, in agreement with standard first dredge-up predictions. Our results do not support previous claims of sodium overabundances as high as +0.60 dex. An anti-correlation between 12C/13C and turn-off mass is identified and interpreted as being caused by a post-bump thermohaline mixing. Moreover, we find low 12C/13C ratios in a few intermediate-mass early-AGB stars, confirming that an extra-mixing process also operates in stars that do not experienced the RGB bump. In this case, the extra-mixing possibly acts on the early-AGB, in agreement with theoretical expectations for thermohaline mixing. [abridged]Comment: A&A accepted, revised versio

    26Al yields from rotating Wolf--Rayet star models

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    We present new 26^{26}Al stellar yields from rotating Wolf--Rayet stellar models which, at solar metallicity, well reproduce the observed properties of the Wolf-Rayet populations. These new yields are enhanced with respect to non--rotating models, even with respect to non--rotating models computed with enhanced mass loss rates. We briefly discuss some implications of the use of these new yields for estimating the global contribution of Wolf-Rayet stars to the quantity of 26^{26}Al now present in the Milky Way.Comment: 6 pages, 2 figures, to appear in New Astronomy Review
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