Institut national de recherche scientifique français Univerité Pierre et Marie Curie Université Paris Diderot - Paris 7

The most massive stars

lundi 30 mai 2022, par Alex de Koter (Anton Pannekoek Institute for Astronomy, Netherlands)

Jeudi 2 juin 2022 à 16h00 , Lieu : Salle de rĂ©union du bâtiment 16 et visioconfĂ©rence

Massive stars may have been the first sources of light after the Big Bang. They are potential contributors to the re-ionization of the Universe and have likely played a crucial role in galaxy formation. The most massive stars today easily outshine the sun by a factor of a million or more, hence provide strong radiative feedback on their host environment. Through powerful stellar winds and supernova ejecta they enrich their surroundings with newly processed chemical elements, which constitute the building block of terrestrial planets and life. The recent detection of gravitational waves revealed surprisingly high black hole masses, pointing to very massive progenitor stars in binary systems.

In this talk I will first sketch the role of massive stars in the grand scheme of things. Then, I will focus on aspects of the outcome of the formation of the most massive stars, including new insights into the formation of massive close binaries and the maximum formation mass, a.k.a., the upper mass limit.