Basic Astrophysics by Dan Maoz

By Dan Maoz

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To see this, consider a star that is forming from a mass M that is contracting under its own gravity and heating up (star formation will be discussed in some detail in Chapter 5). The contraction will stop, and an equilibrium will be set up, once the density and the temperature in the core are high enough for the onset of nuclear reactions.

47) L = 4πr∗2 σTE4 , 2 this immediately implies that hotter stars are bigger, with r∗ ∼ TE . The Sun is a main sequence star. Since the coolest stars have about half the surface temperature of the Sun and the hottest stars have about 5 times the Solar temperature, the radii of main-sequence stars are in the range of about 1/4 to 25 times the Solar radius. Two other stellar loci are apparent on the H-R diagram. , red) yet with luminosities orders of magnitudes higher than those of main sequence stars.

12. Energy transport by means of conduction plays a role only in dense stellar remnants – white dwarfs and neutron stars – which are discussed in Chapter 4. Photons in stars can be absorbed or scattered out of a beam via interactions with molecules, with atoms (either neutral or ions), and with electrons. , the number of targets per unit volume), then the projected number of targets per unit area lying in the path of the photon is ndx (see Fig. 2). If each target poses an effective “cross section”2 σ for absorption or scattering, then the fraction of the area covered by targets is σndx.

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