NLTE determination of the aluminium abundance in a homogeneous sample of extremely metal-poor stars *
GEPI, CNRS UMR 8111, Observatoire de Paris-Meudon, 92125 Meudon Cedex, France e-mail: Monique.Spite@obspm.fr
2 Department of Astronomy and Astronomical Observatory, Odessa National University, Shevchenko Park, 65014 Odessa, Ukraine
3 CIFIST Marie Curie Excellence Team
4 Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica – Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste, via Tiepolo 11, 34143 Trieste, Italy
Accepted: 7 January 2008
Aims. Aluminium is a key element to constrain the models of the chemical enrichment and the yields of the first supernovae. But obtaining precise Al abundances in extremely metal-poor (EMP) stars requires that the non-LTE effects be carefully taken into account.
Methods. The NLTE profiles of the blue resonance aluminium lines have been computed in a sample of 53 extremely metal-poor stars with a modified version of the program MULTI applied to an atomic model of the Al atom with 78 levels of Al I and 13 levels of Al II, and compared to the observations.
Results. With these new determinations, all the stars of the sample show a ratio Al/Fe close to the solar value: [Al/Fe] = -0.06±0.10 with a very small scatter. These results are compared to the models of the chemical evolution of the halo using different models of SN II and are compatible with recent computations. The sodium-rich giants are not found to be also aluminium-rich and thus, as expected, the convection in these giants only brings to the surface the products of the Ne-Na cycle.
Key words: line: formation / line: profiles / stars: abundances / stars: late-type / stars: supernovae: general / Galaxy: evolution
© ESO, 2008