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Mass-losing M supergiants in the solar neighborhood
Jura, M.; Kleinmann, S. G.
AA(California, University, Los Angeles), AB(Massachusetts, University, Amherst)
Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series (ISSN 0067-0049), vol. 73, Aug. 1990, p. 769-780. Research supported by NASA. (ApJS Homepage)
Publication Date:
NASA/STI Keywords:
M Stars, Red Giant Stars, Solar Neighborhood, Stellar Mass Ejection, Supergiant Stars, Spatial Distribution, Stellar Envelopes, Stellar Evolution, Stellar Luminosity, Wolf-Rayet Stars
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A list of the 21 mass-losing red supergiants (20 M type, one G type; L greater than 100,000 solar luminosities) within 2.5 kpc of the sun is compiled. These supergiants are highly evolved descendants of main-sequence stars with initial masses larger than 20 solar masses. The surface density is between about 1 and 2/sq kpc. As found previously, these stars are much less concentrated toward the Galactic center than W-R stars, which are also highly evolved massive stars. Although with considerable uncertainty, it is estimated that the mass return by the M supergiants is somewhere between 0.00001 and 0.00003 solar mass/sq kpc yr. In the hemisphere facing the Galactic center there is much less mass loss from M supergiants than from W-R stars, but, in the anticenter direction, the M supergiants return more mass than do the W-R stars. The duration of the M supergiant phase appears to be between 200,000 and 400,000 yr. During this phase, a star of initially at least 20 solar masses returns perhaps 3-10 solar masses into the interstellar medium.

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