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Seismology of magnetic massive stars

Abstract : About ten percent of stars with spectral type O, B or A have a detectable stable strong large-scale magnetic field at their surface, which most often resembles a magnetic dipole. These large-scale magnetic fields extend into the radiative layers of the OBA stars. Theory and simulations predict that they alter the internal structure and physical properties of these stars. In particular, it is expected that these large-scale magnetic fields enforce uniform rotation in the radiative layers and may suppress convective core overshooting. This has consequences for the evolution of these magnetic hot stars and it has implications for galactic evolution. Therefore, we observed and investigated the internal structure of magnetic hot stars. To do so, asteroseismology is the best method as the oscillation properties are directly related to the internal physical conditions. Various types of stellar oscillations are known and they are classified based on their dominant restoring force. Of these, gravity modes are governed by the buoyancy force and have their strongest probing power in the near core region, which is the domain of our interest.Our first objective was to identify pulsating magnetic hot stars and characterize their magnetic and seismic properties. We constructed a sample of magnetic candidate stars, by following indirect observational diagnostics for the presence of a large-scale magnetic field, to confirm with ground-based high-resolution optical spectropolarimetry taken with ESPaDOnS, Narval or HARPSpol. For two known magnetic stars, HD43317 and o Lup, we characterized the geometry and strength of the field in detail by analysing spectropolarimetric time series. For each star in our sample, we obtained high-cadence high-precision space-based photometry from BRITE, CoRoT, or K2 to study (periodic) variability. Only HD43317 revealed tens of stellar pulsations mode frequencies that pointed towards gravity modes. Only a few other stars studied showed a few pulsation mode frequencies, unsuitable for seismic modelling.We investigated the B3.5V star HD43317 in detail to determine the internal structure of a magnetic hot star. We did this by forward seismic modelling, where observed stellar pulsation mode frequencies in the CoRoT data covering ∼150d were fit to those of gravito-intertial modes computed with the pulsation code GYRE, coupled to MESA stellar structure models. We identified the pulsation mode frequencies as overlapping (l, m) = (1,-1) and (2,-1) mode series. The small convective core overshooting region derived from the seismic modelling was in line with the theoretical predictions. Yet, some of the parameters for the best fitted models were also compatible with literature values for non-magnetic pulsators within the derived uncertainties. We conclude that the CoRoT time series of ∼150d is too short to lead to stringent constraints and tests of the stellar interior to discriminate between magnetic and non-magnetic pulsating hot stars.From our detailed modelling efforts of the best studied pulsating magnetic hot star HD43317, we were unable to observationally corroborate the theoretical predictions of an altered internal structure for magnetic hot stars. Simplifications and approximations were made during the forward seismic modelling due to the limited frequency resolution of the CoRoT data in terms of its time base. Further efforts to include magnetism in the pulsation codes, or magnetism, rotation, and angular momentum transport in the evolutionary models, are worthwhile to test whether magnetic signatures are present in the numerous (non-magnetic) gravito-inertial pulsators recently found in the nominal Kepler database (which has a ten times better frequency resolution compared to CoRoT).
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  • HAL Id : tel-02096862, version 1

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Bram Buysschaert. Seismology of magnetic massive stars. Astrophysics [astro-ph]. Université Paris sciences et lettres; Katholieke universiteit te Leuven (1970-..), 2018. English. ⟨NNT : 2018PSLEO004⟩. ⟨tel-02096862⟩

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