Questions tagged [stellar-atmospheres]

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What is the density profile within the Sun's photosphere? Which one of these is wrong?

The Sun's photosphere contains the Sun's surface as defined by opacity = 2/3 point. I'd like to see the profile of mass density from bottom to top of the photosphere. I did a quick search and got ...
13
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1answer
1k views

How can neutron stars have gaseous atmospheres?

Neutron stars can have small atmospheres. However, they also have extremely strong gravitationally pulls. Shouldn't the all the gas molecules be drawn to the star's surface, and become solids under ...
8
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3answers
685 views

Why does Gaia use only calcium NIR lines for stellar radial velocity measurements?

I was reading this overview article about the Gaia spacecraft and I saw the following statement: These spectra provide radial velocity information that are used to study the kinematic and dynamic ...
12
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2answers
5k views

How does one determine the effective temperature of a star from its spectrum?

Determining effective temperature of a star is in general a non-trivial task. Simple reason for this is that we can only study the electromagnetic radiation from a star, but not the temperature ...
8
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2answers
402 views

What does this “web on the surface of the Sun” image reflect? What does 789 nm show us?

What is this web on the surface of the Sun? has got me thinking. This is probably not a normal color photo. The cooler areas are really dark! update: Comments point out The NSO press release says ...
3
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1answer
228 views

At what depth below the Sun's surface does the density reach that of water?

I'd like to write a short supplementary answer to A probe floating in Sun's surface but in order to do so I need to know at roughly what depth relative to the Sun's surface the mass density reaches 1 ...
0
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1answer
438 views

Does the Sun's atmosphere have a scale height?

Much of the Earth's atmosphere has a scale height $h$ of roughly 7 to 8 kilometers such that the local density varies as $\exp(-(r-r_0)/h)$ where r is the radius vector and $r_0$ would be some ...