White Dwarfs In Ngc6397 And M4: Constraints On The Physics Of Crystallization




Winget, D. E.
Montgomery, M. H.
Kepler, S. O.
Campos, F.
Bergeron, P.

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We explore the physics of crystallization in the dense Coulomb plasma of the deep interiors of white dwarf stars using the color-magnitude diagram and luminosity function constructed from Hubble Space Telescope photometry of the globular cluster M 4 and compare it with our results for proper motion cleaned Hubble Space Telescope photometry of the globular cluster NGC 6397. We demonstrate that the data are consistent with a binary mixture of carbon and oxygen crystallizing at a value of Gamma higher than the theoretical value for a One Component Plasma (OCP). We show that this result is in line with the latest Molecular Dynamics simulations for binary mixtures of C/O. We discuss implications for future work.



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D. E. Winget, M. H. Montgomery, S. O. Kepler, F. Campos, P. Bergeron. AIP Conference Proceedings 1273, 146 (Aug., 2010); doi: 10.1063/1.3527792