Volume 593, September 2016
|Number of page(s)||11|
|Section||Stellar structure and evolution|
|Published online||30 September 2016|
Magnetic inhibition of convection and the fundamental properties of low-mass stars
III. A consistent 10 Myr age for the Upper Scorpius OB association
1 Department of Physics & AstronomyUppsala University, Box 516, 751 20 Uppsala, Sweden
2 Department of Physics, University of North Georgia, 82 College Circle, Dahlonega, GA 30597, USA
Received: 21 October 2015
Accepted: 27 June 2016
When determining absolute ages of identifiably young stellar populations, results strongly depend on which stars are studied. Cooler (K, M) stars typically yield ages that are systematically younger than warmer (A, F, G) stars by a factor of two. I explore the possibility that these age discrepancies are the result of magnetic inhibition of convection in cool young stars by using magnetic stellar evolution isochrones to determine the median age of the Upper Scorpius subgroup of the Scorpius-Centaurus OB association. A median age of 10 Myr consistent across spectral types A through M is found, except for a subset of F-type stars that appear significantly older. Agreement is shown for ages derived from the Hertzsprung-Russell (HR) diagram and from the empirical mass-radius relationship defined by eclipsing multiple-star systems. Surface magnetic field strengths required to produce agreement are approximately 2.5 kG and are predicted from a priori estimates of thermal equipartition values. A region in the HR diagram is identified that plausibly connects stars whose structures are weakly influenced by the presence of magnetic fields with those whose structures are strongly influenced by magnetic fields. The models suggest that this region is characterized by stars with rapidly thinning outer convective envelopes where the radiative core mass is greater than 75% of the total stellar mass. Furthermore, depletion of lithium predicted from magnetic models appears in better agreement with observed lithium equivalent widths than predictions from non-magnetic models. These results suggest that magnetic inhibition of convection plays an important role in the early evolution of low-mass stars and that it may be responsible for noted age discrepancies in young stellar populations.
Key words: binaries: eclipsing / stars: evolution / stars: low-mass / stars: magnetic field / stars: pre-main sequence / open clusters and associations: individual: Upper Scorpius
© ESO, 2016
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