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  Tidal Interactions between Binary Stars Can Drive Lithium Production in Low-mass Red Giants

Casey, A. R., Ho, A. Y. Q., Ness, M., Hogg, D. W., Rix, H.-W., Angelou, G. C., et al. (2019). Tidal Interactions between Binary Stars Can Drive Lithium Production in Low-mass Red Giants. The Astrophysical Journal, 880(2): 125. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/ab27bf.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0005-EF5B-9 Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0005-EF5C-8
Genre: Journal Article

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 Creators:
Casey, Andrew R., Author
Ho, Anna Y. Q., Author
Ness, Melissa, Author
Hogg, David W., Author
Rix, Hans-Walter, Author
Angelou, George C.1, Author              
Hekker, Saskia1, Author              
Tout, Christopher A., Author
Lattanzio, John C., Author
Karakas, Amanda I., Author
Woods, Tyrone E., Author
Price-Whelan, Adrian M., Author
Schlaufman, Kevin C., Author
Affiliations:
1Max Planck Research Group in Stellar Ages and Galactic Evolution (SAGE), Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Max Planck Society, ou_2265636              

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 Abstract: Theoretical models of stellar evolution predict that most of the lithium inside a star is destroyed as the star becomes a red giant. However, observations reveal that about 1% of red giants are peculiarly rich in lithium, often exceeding the amount in the interstellar medium or predicted from the big bang. With only about 150 lithium-rich giants discovered in the past four decades, and no distinguishing properties other than lithium enhancement, the origin of lithium-rich giant stars is one of the oldest problems in stellar astrophysics. Here we report the discovery of 2330 low-mass (1-3M(Theta)) lithium-rich giant stars, which we argue are consistent with internal lithium production that is driven by tidal spin-up by a binary companion. Our sample reveals that most lithium-rich giants have helium-burning cores (80(-6)(+7)%), and that the frequency of lithium-rich giants rises with increasing stellar metallicity. We find that while planet accretion may explain some lithium-rich giants, it cannot account for the majority that have helium-burning cores. We rule out most other proposed explanations for the origin of lithium-rich giants. Our analysis shows that giants remain lithium-rich for only about two million years. A prediction from this lithium depletion timescale is that most lithium-rich giants with a helium-burning core have a binary companion.

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Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2019
 Publication Status: Published in print
 Pages: -
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 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Method: Peer
 Identifiers: DOI: 10.3847/1538-4357/ab27bf
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Title: The Astrophysical Journal
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: Bristol; Vienna : IOP Publishing; IAEA
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 880 (2) Sequence Number: 125 Start / End Page: - Identifier: ISSN: 0004-637X
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/954922828215_3