EAS Publications Series
Volume 19, 2006Stars and Nuclei: A Tribute to Manuel Forestini
|Page(s)||199 - 219|
|Published online||25 March 2006|
T. Montmerle and C. Kahane (eds)
EAS Publications Series, 19 (2006) 199-219
Presolar Grains and AGB Stars*
Astronomical Institute, University of Utrecht, Postbus
80000, 3508 TA, Utrecht, The Netherlands
2 Dipartimento di Fisica Generale, Università di Torino and Sezione INFN di Torino, via Giuria 1, 10125 Torino, Italy
3 Centre for Stellar and Planetary Astrophysics, School of Mathematical Sciences, Monash University 3800, Victoria, Australia
The recent discovery of microscopic grains of presolar origin in primitive meteorites has opened a new field of astrophysics where scientists from different disciplines, from nuclear physics to astronomy, chemistry and mineralogy, are required to work together. In this inter-disciplinary field information on the composition of stars is obtained through laboratory analysis of meteoritic rocks. We review the main features of the composition of presolar SiC and oxide grains that are believed to have originated in Asymptotic Giant Branch (AGB) stars. High-precision laboratory measurements of the isotopic composition of these types of presolar grains represent the most detailed record of the composition of AGB stars, and thus a major constraint for the theoretical models of these stars. In particular, the CNO and Al/Mg compositions can set constraints on extra-mixing processes in red giant and AGB stars. The composition of heavy elements produced by slow neutron captures (s-process) yields a variety of information on the grain parent stars, including their masses and the way neutron sources operate.
© EAS, EDP Sciences, 2006
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