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Putting atomic diffusion theory of magnetic ApBp stars to the test: evaluation of the predictions of time-dependent diffusion models
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Observational Astronomy.
Russian Acad Sci, Inst Astron, 48 Pyatnitskaya St, Moscow 119017, Russia..
2018 (English)In: Monthly notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, ISSN 0035-8711, E-ISSN 1365-2966, Vol. 474, no 2, p. 2787-2795Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

A series of recent theoretical atomic diffusion studies has address the challenging problem of predicting inhomogeneous vertical and horizontal chemical element distributions in the atmospheres of magnetic ApBp stars. Here we critically assess the most sophisticated of such diffusion models - based on a time-dependent treatment of the atomic diffusion in a magnetized stellar atmosphere - by direct comparison with observations as well by testing the widely used surface mapping tools with the spectral line profiles predicted by this theory. We show that the mean abundances of Fe and Cr are grossly underestimated by the time-dependent theoretical diffusion model, with discrepancies reaching a factor of 1000 for Cr. We also demonstrate that Doppler imaging inversion codes, based either on modelling of individual metal lines or line-averaged profiles simulated according to theoretical three-dimensional abundance distribution, are able to reconstruct correct horizontal chemical spot maps despite ignoring the vertical abundance variation. These numerical experiments justify a direct comparison of the empirical two-dimensional Doppler maps with theoretical diffusion calculations. This comparison is generally unfavourable for the current diffusion theory, as very few chemical elements are observed to form overabundance rings in the horizontal field regions as predicted by the theory and there are numerous examples of element accumulations in the vicinity of radial field zones, which cannot be explained by diffusion calculations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
OXFORD UNIV PRESS , 2018. Vol. 474, no 2, p. 2787-2795
Keywords [en]
diffusion, line: profiles, stars: abundances, stars: chemically peculiar
National Category
Astronomy, Astrophysics and Cosmology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-348401DOI: 10.1093/mnras/stx2961ISI: 000424343600096OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-348401DiVA, id: diva2:1197375
Funder
Knut and Alice Wallenberg FoundationSwedish Research CouncilSwedish National Space BoardAvailable from: 2018-04-12 Created: 2018-04-12 Last updated: 2018-04-12Bibliographically approved

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Kochukhov, Oleg

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