LAMOST mission reveals the secrets of the rotation of hot stars

(ORDO NEWS) — All stars rotate, but at different speeds. The rotation of stars has a great influence on all aspects of the evolution of the stars. But the evolution of angular momentum is still a mystery to scientists.

The new study, led by a team led by Sun Weijia of Peking University and the National Astronomical Observatories of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, provides new insights into stellar rotation by studying the rotation rates of hundreds of thousands of massive stars.

The sun has a rotation speed of about 2 kilometers per second at the equator, while more massive stars can reach rotation speeds of the order of hundreds of kilometers per second. Such a large difference raises questions about the origin and evolution of the angular momentum of such rapidly rotating stars.

“Rapid rotation is common among massive stars,” Weijia said. “In our work, we studied the evolution of the angular momentum of massive stars throughout most of their life cycle.”

To study the rotation of these stars, the authors used the Large Sky Area Multi-Object Fiber Spectroscopic Telescope (LAMOST), which conducts spectroscopic observations of tens of millions of stars.

Using a new method based on the processing of observational data, Weijia and his team studied the properties of more than 40,000 massive stars, which made it possible to survey the rotation parameters of stars with an unprecedented level of accuracy.

“Such a catalog will change our understanding of the evolution of massive stars,” he said. “Our data challenge the notion that all stars with unusual chemical compositions rotate slowly.”

Moreover, this work reveals a detailed structure of changes in the speed of rotation of the stars depending on their mass and metallicity.

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