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Effects of convective overshoot on lithium depletion in main-sequence stars
Straus, J. M.; Blake, J. B.; Schramm, D. N.
AA(Aerospace Corp., Los Angeles, Calif.), AB(Aerospace Corp., Los Angeles, Calif.), AC(Chicago, University, Chicago, Ill.)
Astrophysical Journal, vol. 204, Mar. 1, 1976, pt. 1, p. 481-487. Research supported by the Aerospace Corp. (ApJ Homepage)
Publication Date:
NASA/STI Keywords:
Convective Heat Transfer, Lithium, Main Sequence Stars, Stellar Evolution, Stellar Mass, Stellar Models, Abundance, Astronomical Models, Nuclear Reactions, Pleiades Cluster, Star Clusters, Temperature Effects
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A current problem in stellar evolution is to understand the lithium depletion in low-mass main-sequence stars. Standard stellar models do not produce temperatures in the outer convective zone high enough to allow lithium burning to occur. Convective overshoot could extend the mixing region deep enough to allow lithium burning. However, the strong temperature dependence of the relevant reaction rates initially seems to imply either total destruction or no destruction. Nevertheless, observations of main-sequence stars indicate a smooth variation of lithium abundance with stellar mass between 0.8 and 1.1 solar mass as well as a dependence on stellar age. A gradual dependence of the degree of convective overshoot with stellar mass can be obtained if one uses a dynamical approach for describing the convective process. Thus, both the mass and age dependence of lithium depletion might be understood. Specific examples of the Hyades and Pleiades clusters, as well as the sun, are discussed.

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