AAS 204th Meeting, June 2004
Session 7 A Walk Through the HR Diagram
Poster, Monday, May 31, 2004, 9:20am-6:30pm, Ballroom

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[7.04] Models for the Rapidly Rotating Be Star Achernar

A. Skumanich, K. B. Macgregor, S. Jackson (HAO - NCAR)

We present models for the Be star Achernar (\alpha Eridani), which recent interferometric observations have shown has a photospheric shape that is significantly distorted by the effects of rotation. The models are two-dimensional, axisymmetric configurations, constructed using a new version of the self-consistent-field (SCF) method for computing the the structure of a rapidly, differentially rotating star, Jackson et al. (2004). Our revised SCF technique does not suffer from the computational difficulties that affected previous implementations of the method, yielding converged stellar models regardless of mass. For models with masses like those of main sequence stars of mid to early B spectral type, it is possible to reproduce Achernar's inferred equatorial and polar dimensions through a combination of rotational flattening/distension and suitable inclination of the rotation axis. However, while matching Achernar's apparent shape, these models are discrepant in other respects, being (on average) cooler and more rapidly rotating than observations indicate.

Jackson, S., Macgregor, K. B. & Skumanich, A., in preparation

The NCAR (National Center for Atmospheric Research) is sponsored by the National Science Foundation.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: sku@hao.ucar.edu

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