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Centro de Astrofísica da Universidade do Porto

On the excitation mechanism in roAp stars

N. J. Balmforth, M. S. Cunha, N. Dolez, D. O. Gough, S. Vauclair

Abstract
We investigate a model for the excitation of high-order oscillations in roAp stars. In this model we assume that the strong concentration of magnetic field about the magnetic poles is enough to suppress convection. Thus the model considered is composed of two polar regions, in which convection is presumed to be suppressed totally, and an equatorial region, where the convection is unaffected. This model is generated by building pairs of locally spherically symmetrical equilibria to represent the polar and equatorial regions of the star, which are patched together below the base of the convection zone. Gravitational settling of heavy elements is taken into account by choosing appropriate chemical composition profiles for both the polar and equatorial regions. Our results indicate that the composite model is unstable against axisymmetric non-radial high-order modes of pulsation that are aligned with the magnetic poles. The oscillations are excited by the κ mechanism acting principally in the hydrogen ionization zones of the polar regions. The effect of the lateral inhomogeneity on the second frequency differences is also investigated; we find that the perturbation to them by the inhomogeneity is of the same order as the second differences themselves, thereby hindering potential attempts to use such differences to identify the degrees of the modes in a straightforward way.

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volume 323, Page 362
May 2001

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