Mass Dependence - Mass Dependence The stages a star will go...

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Mass Dependence The stages a star will go through and how long it will last in each stage also depend on the mass (with just little bit of dependence on composition). Massive stars evolve quicker than light stars. In the previous chapter, the relationship between the luminosity and mass was explained using basic principles of how compressed gases behave. Slight increases in mass produce large increases in the luminosities of stars. Stars shine because of nuclear fusion reactions in their core. The more luminous they are, the more reactions are taking place in their cores. Massive stars live shorter lives than the common small stars because even though they have a larger amount of hydrogen for nuclear reactions, their rate of consuming their fuel is very much greater. The massive stars are analogous to the big, gas-guzzling automobiles with big gas tanks of a few decades ago and the small stars are analogous to the small economy automobiles of today that are frugal with their gasoline. It is a simple calculation to find out how long something can continue consuming fuel. The
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This note was uploaded on 12/15/2011 for the course AST AST1002 taught by Professor Emilyhoward during the Fall '10 term at Broward College.

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