Statistics and supermetallicity: The metallicity of Mu LeonisB. J. Taylor
Department of Physics and Astronomy, N283 ESC, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT 84602-4360, USA
(Received 9 February 2001 / Accepted 2 October 2001)
For the often-studied "SMR" giant Leo, Smith & Ruck (2000) have recently found that [Fe/H] dex. Their conclusion is tested here in a "statistical" paradigm, in which statistical principles are used to select published high-dispersion Leo data and assign error bars to them. When data from Smith & Ruck and from Takeda et al. (1998) are added to a data base compiled in 1999, it is found that conclusions from an earlier analysis (Taylor 1999c) are essentially unchanged: the mean value of [Fe/H] dex, and values +0.2 dex are not clearly ruled out at 95% confidence. In addition, the hypothesis that [Fe/H] dex which emerges from the Smith-Ruck analysis is formally rejected at 98% confidence. The "default paradigm" which is commonly used to assess Leo data is also considered. The basic characteristics of that paradigm continue to be a) unexplained exclusion of statistical analysis, b) inadequately explained deletions from an [Fe/H] data base containing accordant data, and c) an undefended convention that Leo is to have a metallicity of about +0.3 dex or higher. As a result, it seems fair to describe the Smith-Ruck application and other applications of the default paradigm as invalid methods of inference from the data.
Key words: stars: abundances -- stars: individual: Leo
© ESO 2001