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Molecule and Dust Grain Formation

  • Tom J. Millar
Part of the Astronomy and Astrophysics Library book series (AAL)

Abstract

AGB stars provide a fascinating observational laboratory for investigating a range of chemical processes important in many applications of molecular astrophysics. Figure 5.1 outlines the basic chemical structure of an AGB cir-cumstellar envelope (CSE) and identifies the processes that dominate in each region. These include chemistry in local thermodynamic equilibrium (LTE), which occurs at high density and temperature close to the stellar photosphere; the effects of shock waves driven by stellar pulsations, which expose molecules formed in LTE to new physical conditions and which can form “nonequilibrium” molecules; the nucleation of solid particles; the interaction of stellar photons with the dust particles and the subsequent interaction between the gas and the dust as the solid matter is ejected to large distances by radiation pressure; the growth of dust grains; and finally, the interaction of stellar material with the interstellar radiation field.

Keywords

Rate Coefficient Column Density Local Thermodynamic Equilibrium Carbon Star Fractional Abundance 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tom J. Millar
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhysicsUMISTUK

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