Radiative accelerations in stars: The effect of Zeeman splitting
DAEC/LUTH (Observatoire de Paris – CNRS), Observatoire de Meudon, 92195 Meudon Cedex, France
2 Institut für Astronomie (IfA), Universität Wien, Türkenschanzstrasse 17, 1180 Wien, Austria e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Corresponding author: G. Alecian, email@example.com
Accepted: 8 March 2002
The influence of Zeeman splitting on radiative accelerations of chemical elements in stellar atmospheres permeated by magnetic fields with strengths of up to a few Tesla has for the first time been investigated in detail taking into account magneto-optical effects and line blending. The work is based on the newly developed object-oriented and parallel code CARAT (which is presented in some detail), on extensive atomic data taken from the VALD database and on a 12 000 K, Kurucz atmosphere with solar abundances. The calculations show that magnetically induced spectral line desaturation can lead to unexpectedly large amplifications of accelerations – relative to the zero-field case – in a number of atomic species. These amplifications are found to be strongly dependent both on field strength and on field orientation, reaching a pronounced maximum near the inclination of between field vector and vertical with values sometimes in excess of 1.5 dex. Horizontal accelerations, a consequence of polarised radiative transfer, turn out to remain fairly small and will probably not have any important effect on the diffusion velocity vector. This first study on a large scale of how radiative accelerations are affected by Zeeman splitting is completed by a discussion of the importance of complete atomic line lists, in particular line lists with correct Landé factors; it must also be accepted that magneto-optical effects can by no means be neglected. Finally, it appears that the “canonical” picture of abundance inhomogeneities may have to be revised: instead of being tied to regions with predominantly vertical or horizontal magnetic fields, abundance patches could show up as contours about the curves tracing the field vector inclination of ≈ .
Key words: diffusion / stars: abundances / stars: chemically peculiar / stars: magnetic fields / polarization
© ESO, 2002