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The hot subdwarfs revisited
Wesemael, F.; Winget, D. E.; Cabot, W.; van Horn, H. M.; Fontaine, G.
AA(Rochester University; C. E. Kenneth Mees Observatory, Rochester, NY; Illinois, University, Urbana, IL; Cambridge University, Cambridge, England), AB(Rochester University; C. E. Kenneth Mees Observatory, Rochester, NY), AC(Rochester University; C. E. Kenneth Mees Observatory, Rochester, NY), AD(Rochester University; C. E. Kenneth Mees Observatory, Rochester, NY), AE(Montreal, Universite, Montreal; Observatoire du Mont Megantic, Quebec, Canada)
Astrophysical Journal, Part 1, vol. 254, Mar. 1, 1982, p. 221-231. Research supported by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and Ministere de l'Education du Quebec (ApJ Homepage)
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NASA/STI Keywords:
Hot Stars, Stellar Atmospheres, Stellar Evolution, Stellar Models, Subdwarf Stars, Early Stars, High Gravity Environments, White Dwarf Stars
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Model atmospheres for hot, high-gravity stars are utilized to study the evolutionary path of hot subdwarfs into white dwarfs. A new approach is used in which theoretical evolutionary tracks are transformed into the appropriate observer's diagram, where a direct comparison with unprocessed observations can be performed. The sdB/sdO transition is considered to result from a change in the surface chemical composition of hot subdwarfs due to convective mixing of hydrogen and helium below the surface and/or diffusion of hydrogen through helium. A possible mechanism for the expulsion of hydrogen from the sdO star, producing a helium-rich white dwarf, is discussed. On the basis of diffusion arguments, an upper limit on the lifetime of the sdB phase is set and an sdB birthrate number is implied. Post-ZAHB stars are seen as likely progenitors of hot subdwarfs.

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