Astrophysics and Space Science

, Volume 41, Issue 2, pp 407–415

Possible effects of internal rotation in low-mass stars


  • John G. Mengel
    • Yale University Observatory
  • Peter G. Gross
    • Warner and Swasey ObservatoryCase Western Reserve University

DOI: 10.1007/BF00646189

Cite this article as:
Mengel, J.G. & Gross, P.G. Astrophys Space Sci (1976) 41: 407. doi:10.1007/BF00646189


The influence of internal rotation on the evolution of a 0.85M star is investigated by the construction of model sequences. Rotation is treated by a simple one-dimensional approximation. The calculations assume solid-body rotation on the zero-age Main Sequence, followed by conservation of angular momentum in shells. The 4 cases considered have the initial angular velocities 0,2×10−4, 6×10−4, and 8×10−4/sec. All cases but the last are followed to helium ignition. Compared with the non-rotating case, the rotating models are older at Main-Sequence turnoff, develop fast-spinning central regions on the red-giant branch, and ignite helium at higher surface luminosities and at larger helium-core masses. The increases in the last two quantities are roughly proportional to the square of the initial angular velocity.

The 6×10−4 case is followed through the helium core flash to the zero-age horizontal branch. Under the assumption of spherical symmetry, the non-central ignition of helium leads to a sequence of flashes of decreasing amplitude occurring progressively closer to the center. The flashes are weaker than those encountered in previous studies and do not produce mixing.

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© D. Reidel Publishing Company 1976