Volume 558, October 2013
|Number of page(s)||18|
|Published online||04 October 2013|
Three-dimensional simulations of near-surface convection in main-sequence stars
II. Properties of granulation and spectral lines
Max-Planck-Institut für Sonnensystemforschung,
2 Institut für Astrophysik, Universität Göttingen, Friedrich-Hund-Platz 1, 37077 Göttingen, Germany
Accepted: 16 August 2013
Context. The atmospheres of cool main-sequence stars are structured by convective flows from the convective envelope that penetrate the optically thin layers and lead to structuring of the stellar atmospheres analogous to solar granulation. The flows have considerable influence on the 3D structure of temperature and pressure and affect the profiles of spectral lines formed in the photosphere.
Aims. For the set of six 3D radiative (M)HD simulations of cool main-sequence stars described in the first paper of this series, we analyse the near-surface layers. We aim at describing the properties of granulation of different stars and at quantifying the effects on spectral lines of the thermodynamic structure and flows of 3D convective atmospheres.
Methods. We detected and tracked granules in brightness images from the simulations to analyse their statistical properties, as well as their evolution and lifetime. We calculated spatially resolved spectral line profiles using the line synthesis code SPINOR. To enable a comparison to stellar observations, we implemented a numerical disc-integration, which includes (differential) rotation.
Results. Although the stellar parameters change considerably along the model sequence, the properties of the granules are very similar. The impact of the 3D structure of the atmospheres on line profiles is measurable in disc-integrated spectra. Line asymmetries caused by convection are modulated by stellar rotation.
Conclusions. The 3D structure of cool stellar atmospheres as shaped by convective flows has to be taken into account when using photospheric lines to determine stellar parameters.
Key words: convection / hydrodynamics / stars: late-type / stars: low-mass
© ESO, 2013
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