Astrophysics and Space Science

, Volume 147, Issue 2, pp 219–227

The Schoenberg-Chandrasekhar limit: A polytropic approximation

  • Martin Beech

DOI: 10.1007/BF00645666

Cite this article as:
Beech, M. Astrophys Space Sci (1988) 147: 219. doi:10.1007/BF00645666


The existence of a maximum isothermal core mass fraction (qmax), the Schoenberg-Chandrasekhar limit, is one of the ‘classic’ results from the theory of stellar structure. This limit can be demonstrated through a simplified composite polytrope model in which an isothermal core is surrounded by ann=1 polytrope envelope. While this model underestimatesqmas by ∼25% in the homogeneous case, it is accurate to within 5% in the more realistic inhomogeneous situation.

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martin Beech
    • 1
  1. 1.Astronomy DepartmentUniversity of Western OntarioLondonCanada