Monday, June 17, 2013

1306.3351 (F. D'Antona et al.)

The puzzle of metallicity and multiple stellar populations in the Globular Clusters in Fornax    [PDF]

F. D'Antona, V. Caloi, A. D'Ercole, M. Tailo, E. Vesperini, P. Ventura, M. Di Criscienzo
We examine the photometric data for Fornax clusters, focussing our attention on their horizontal branch color distribution and, when available, on the RR Lyr variables fraction and period distribution. Based on our understanding of the HB morphology in terms of varying helium content in the context of multiple stellar generations, we show that clusters F2, F3 and F5 must contain substantial fractions of second generation stars (~54-65%). On the basis of a simple chemical evolution model we show that the helium distribution in these clusters can be reproduced by models with cluster initial masses ranging from values equal to ~4 to ~10 times larger than the current masses. Models with a very short second generation star formation episode can also reproduce the observed helium distribution but require larger initial masses up to about twenty times the current mass. While the lower limit of this range of possible initial GC masses is consistent with those suggested by the observations of the low metallicity field stars, we also discuss the possibility that the metallicity scale of field stars (based on CaII triplet spectroscopy) and the metallicities derived for the clusters in Fornax may not be consistent with each other. The reproduction of the HB morphology in F2,F3,F5 requires two interesting hypotheses: 1) the first generation HB stars lie all at "red" colours. According to this interpretation, the low metallicity stars in the field of Fornax, populating the HB at colours bluer than the blue side ((V-I)o<=0.3 or (B-V)o<=0.2) of the RR Lyrs, should be second generation stars born in the clusters;a preliminary analysis of available colour surveys of Fornax field provides a fraction ~20% of blue HB stars, in the low metallicity range; 2) the mass loss from individual second generation red giants is a few percent of a solar mass larger than the mass loss from first generation stars.
View original:

No comments:

Post a Comment