SCYON Abstract

Received on: 01 09 2023

Stellar Wind Yields of Very Massive Stars

Authors:E. R. Higgins 1, J. S. Vink 1, R. Hirschi 2, A. M. Laird 3, G. N. Sabhahi 1
Affiliations:(1) Armagh Observatory and Planetarium, Armagh, N. Ireland; (2) Astrophysics Group, Keele University, Keele, Staffordshire, UK; (3) School of Physics, Engineering and Technology, University of York, York, UK
Accepted by: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

The most massive stars provide an essential source of recycled material for young clusters and galaxies. While very massive stars (VMS, M>100M) are relatively rare compared to O stars, they lose disproportionately large amounts of mass already from the onset of core H-burning. VMS have optically thick winds with elevated mass-loss rates in comparison to optically thin standard O-star winds. We compute wind yields and ejected masses on the main sequence, and we compare enhanced mass-loss rates to standard ones. We calculate solar metallicity wind yields from MESA stellar evolution models in the range 50 - 500M, including a large nuclear network of 92 isotopes, investigating not only the CNO-cycle, but also the Ne-Na and Mg-Al cycles. VMS with enhanced winds eject 5-10 times more H-processed elements (N, Ne, Na, Al) on the main sequence in comparison to standard winds, with possible consequences for observed anti-correlations, such as C-N and Na-O, in globular clusters. We find that for VMS 95% of the total wind yields is produced on the main sequence, while only ~5% is supplied by the post-main sequence. This implies that VMS with enhanced winds are the primary source of 26Al, contrasting previous works where classical Wolf-Rayet winds had been suggested to be responsible for Galactic 26Al enrichment. Finally, 200M stars eject 100 times more of each heavy element in their winds than 50M stars, and even when weighted by an IMF their wind contribution is still an order of magnitude higher than that of 50M stars.

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