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Title: The Active Chromospheres of Lithium-rich Red Giant Stars*

We have gathered near-infraredzyJ-band high-resolution spectra of nearly 300 field red giant stars with known lithium abundances in order to survey their Heiλ10830 absorption strengths. This transition is an indicator of chromospheric activity and/or mass loss in red giants. The majority of stars in our sample reside in the red clump or red horizontal branch based on theirVJ,MVcolor–magnitude diagram, and GaiaTeffand log(g) values. Most of our target stars are Li-poor in the sense of having normally low Li abundances, defined here as logϵ(Li) < 1.25. Over 90% of these Li-poor stars have weakλ10830 features. However, more than half of the 83 Li-rich stars (logϵ(Li) > 1.25) have strongλ10830 absorptions. These largeλ10830 lines signal excess chromospheric activity in Li-rich stars; there is almost no indication of significant mass loss. The Li-rich giants may also have a higher binary fraction than Li-poor stars, based on their astrometric data. It appears likely that both residence on the horizontal branch and present or past binary interaction play roles in the significant Li–He connection established in this survey.

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Publication Date:
Journal Name:
The Astrophysical Journal
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
Article No. 12
DOI PREFIX: 10.3847
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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