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  1. ABSTRACT

    We present a grid of stellar models at supersolar metallicity (Z = 0.020) extending the previous grids of Geneva models at solar and sub-solar metallicities. A metallicity of Z = 0.020 was chosen to match that of the inner Galactic disc. A modest increase of 43 per cent (= 0.02/0.014) in metallicity compared to solar models means that the models evolve similarly to solar models but with slightly larger mass-loss. Mass-loss limits the final total masses of the supersolar models to 35 M⊙ even for stars with initial masses much larger than 100 M⊙. Mass-loss is strong enough in stars above 20 M⊙ for rotating stars (25 M⊙ for non-rotating stars) to remove the entire hydrogen-rich envelope. Our models thus predict SNII below 20 M⊙ for rotating stars (25 M⊙ for non-rotating stars) and SNIb (possibly SNIc) above that. We computed both isochrones and synthetic clusters to compare our supersolar models to the Westerlund 1 (Wd1) massive young cluster. A synthetic cluster combining rotating and non-rotating models with an age spread between log10(age/yr) = 6.7 and 7.0 is able to reproduce qualitatively the observed populations of WR, RSG, and YSG stars in Wd1, in particular their simultaneous presence at $\log _{10}(L/\mathit {\mathrm{ L}}_{\odot })$ = 5–5.5. The quantitative agreement is imperfect and wemore »discuss the likely causes: synthetic cluster parameters, binary interactions, mass-loss and their related uncertainties. In particular, mass-loss in the cool part of the HRD plays a key role.

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  2. ABSTRACT

    Westerlund 1 (Wd1) is potentially the largest star cluster in the Galaxy. That designation critically depends upon the distance to the cluster, yet the cluster is highly obscured, making luminosity-based distance estimates difficult. Using Gaia Data Release 2 (DR2) parallaxes and Bayesian inference, we infer a parallax of $0.35^{+0.07}_{-0.06}$ mas corresponding to a distance of $2.6^{+0.6}_{-0.4}$ kpc. To leverage the combined statistics of all stars in the direction of Wd1, we derive the Bayesian model for a cluster of stars hidden among Galactic field stars; this model includes the parallax zero-point. Previous estimates for the distance to Wd1 ranged from 1.0 to 5.5 kpc, although values around 5 kpc have usually been adopted. The Gaia DR2 parallaxes reduce the uncertainty from a factor of 3 to 18 per cent and rules out the most often quoted value of 5 kpc with 99 per cent confidence. This new distance allows for more accurate mass and age determinations for the stars in Wd1. For example, the previously inferred initial mass at the main-sequence turn-off was around 40 M⊙; the new Gaia DR2 distance shifts this down to about 22 M⊙. This has important implications for our understanding of the late stages of stellar evolution, including the initial massmore »of the magnetar and the LBV in Wd1. Similarly, the new distance suggests that the total cluster mass is about four times lower than previously calculated.

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