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Application of a theory and simulation-based convective boundary mixing model for AGB star evolution and nucleosynthesis

Battino, U.; Pignatari, M.; Ritter, C.; Herwig, F.; Denisenkov, P.; Den Hartogh, J. W.; Trappitsch, R.; Hirschi, R.; Freytag, B.; Thielemann, F.; Paxton, B.


U. Battino

M. Pignatari

C. Ritter

F. Herwig

P. Denisenkov

J. W. Den Hartogh

R. Trappitsch

R. Hirschi

B. Freytag

F. Thielemann

B. Paxton


The s-process nucleosynthesis in Asymptotic giant branch (AGB) stars depends on the modeling of convective boundaries. We present models and s-process simulations that adopt a treatment of convective boundaries based on the results of hydrodynamic simulations and on the theory of mixing due to gravity waves in the vicinity of convective boundaries. Hydrodynamics simulations suggest the presence of convective boundary mixing (CBM) at the bottom of the thermal pulse-driven convective zone. Similarly, convection-induced mixing processes are proposed for the mixing below the convective envelope during third dredge-up (TDU), where the ¹³C pocket for the s process in AGB stars forms. In this work, we apply a CBM model motivated by simulations and theory to models with initial mass M=2 and M = 3 Mʘ, and with initial metal content Z = 0.01 and Z = 0.02. As reported previously, the He-intershell abundances of ¹²C and ¹⁶O are increased by CBM at the bottom of the pulse-driven convection zone. This mixing is affecting the ²²Ne(α, n)²⁵Mg activation and the s-process efficiency in the ¹³C-pocket. In our model, CBM at the bottom of the convective envelope during the TDU represents gravity wave mixing. Furthermore, we take into account the fact that hydrodynamic simulations indicate a declining mixing efficiency that is already about a pressure scale height from the convective boundaries, compared to mixing-length theory. We obtain the formation of the ¹³C-pocket with a mass of ≈10⁻⁴ Mʘ. The final s-process abundances are characterized by 0.36 < [s Fe] < 0.78 and the heavy-to-light s-process ratio is -0.23 < [hs ls] < 0.45. Finally, we compare our results with stellar observations, presolar grain measurements and previous work.


Battino, U., Pignatari, M., Ritter, C., Herwig, F., Denisenkov, P., Den Hartogh, J. W., …Paxton, B. (2016). Application of a theory and simulation-based convective boundary mixing model for AGB star evolution and nucleosynthesis. The Astrophysical journal, 827(1), 30.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 17, 2016
Online Publication Date Aug 4, 2016
Publication Date Jul 10, 2016
Deposit Date Aug 23, 2016
Publicly Available Date Aug 23, 2016
Journal The astrophysical journal
Print ISSN 0004-637X
Electronic ISSN 1538-4357
Publisher American Astronomical Society
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 827
Issue 1
Article Number ARTN 30
Pages 30
Keywords Stars -- abundances, Stars -- evolution, Stars -- interiors
Public URL
Publisher URL;
Additional Information Copy of article first published in: The astrophysical journal, 2016, v.827, issue 1.


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Copyright Statement
© 2016. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.

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