Light elements in stars with exoplanets

Dr. Elisa Delgado Mena

Abstract

The surface abundance of lithium on the Sun is 140 times less than protosolar, yet the temperature at the base of the surface convective zone is not hot enough to burn Li. A large range of Li abundances in solar type stars of the same age, mass and metallicity is observed, but theoretically difficult to understand. An earlier suggestion that Li is more depleted in stars with planets was weakened by the lack of a proper comparison sample of stars without detected planets. Here we report Li abundances for an unbiased sample of solar-analogue stars with and without detected planets. We find that the planet-bearing stars have less than 1 per cent of the primordial Li abundance, while about 50 per cent of the solar analogues without detected planets have on average 10 times more Li. The presence of planets may increase the amount of mixing and deepen the convective zone to such an extent that the Li can be burned. We also present Be abundances for a sample of stars with and without known planets and discuss the possible relation of these light element with the presence of planetary systems.

About the talk

Light elements in stars with exoplanets
Dr. Elisa Delgado Mena
Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias, Spain
Wednesday December 2, 2009 - 0:00  (Aula)
en     en
For published Nature article see Israelian G., et al. 2009, 462, 189.