Volume 573, January 2015
|Number of page(s)||16|
|Section||Galactic structure, stellar clusters and populations|
|Published online||23 December 2014|
The Na-O anticorrelation in horizontal branch stars
INAF – Osservatorio Astronomico di Padova, Vicolo
dell’Osservatorio 5, 35122
2 INAF – Osservatorio Astronomico di Bologna, via Ranzani 1, 40127 Bologna, Italy
3 European Southern Observatory, Alonso de Cordova 3107, Vitacura, Santiago, Chile
4 Department of Physics & Astronomy, Macquarie University, Balaclava Rd., North Ryde, Sydney, NSW 2109, Australia
5 Monash Centre for Astrophysics, School of Mathematical Sciences, Building 28, Monash University, VIC 3800, Australia
6 Astrophysics Research Institute, Liverpool John Moores University, IC2, Liverpool Science Park, 146 Brownlow Hill, Liverpool L3 5RF, UK
7 INAF – Osservatorio Astronomico di Teramo, via Collurania, 24100 Teramo, Italy
8 Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias, La Laguna, 38205 Tenerife, Spain
9 Dominion Astrophysical Observatory, Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics, National Research Council, 5071 West Saanich Road, Victoria, British Columbia V9E 2E7, Canada
Received: 13 June 2014
Accepted: 22 October 2014
We used FLAMES+GIRAFFE (Medusa mode) at the VLT to obtain moderately high resolution spectra for 30 red horizontal branch (RHB) stars, 4 RR Lyrae variables, and 17 blue horizontal branch (BHB) stars in the low-concentration, moderately metal-rich globular cluster NGC 6723 ([Fe/H] = −1.22 ± 0.08 from our present sample). The spectra were optimized to derive O and Na abundances. In addition, we obtained abundances for other elements, including N, Fe, Mg, Ca, Ni, and Ba. We used these data to discuss the evidence of a connection between the distribution of stars along the horizontal branch (HB) and the multiple populations that are typically present in globular clusters. We found that all RHB and most (13 out of 17) BHB stars are O-rich, Na-poor, and N-poor; these stars probably belong to the first stellar generation in this cluster. Only the four warmest observed stars are (moderately) O-poor, Na-rich, and N-rich, and they probably belong to the second generation. While our sample is not fully representative of the whole HB population in NGC 6723, our data suggest that in this cluster only HB stars warmer than ~9000 K, that is one fourth of the total, belong to the second generation, if at all. Since in many other clusters this fraction is about two thirds, we conclude that the fraction of first/second generation in globular clusters may be strongly variable. In addition, the wide range in colour of chemically homogeneous first-generation HB stars requires a considerable spread in mass loss (>0.10 M⊙). The reason for this spread is yet to be understood. Finally, we found a high Ba abundance, with a statistically significant radial abundance gradient.
Key words: stars: abundances / stars: Population II / globular clusters: general / globular clusters: individual: NGC 6723 / stars: evolution
Tables 2, 3, 5, 7, and 8 are available in electronic form at http://www.aanda.org
© ESO, 2014
Current usage metrics show cumulative count of Article Views (full-text article views including HTML views, PDF and ePub downloads, according to the available data) and Abstracts Views on Vision4Press platform.
Data correspond to usage on the plateform after 2015. The current usage metrics is available 48-96 hours after online publication and is updated daily on week days.
Initial download of the metrics may take a while.