Models for Massive Stellar Populations with Rotation

Gerardo A. Vazquez, Claus Leitherer, Daniel Schaerer, Georges Meynet, Andre Maeder

Johns Hopkins University, STScI, Observatoire de Geneve

We present and discuss evolutionary synthesis models for massive stellar populations generated with the Starburst99 code in combination with a new set of stellar evolution models accounting for rotation. The new stellar evolution models were compiled from several data releases of the Geneva group and cover heavy-element abundances ranging from twice solar to one fifth solar. The evolution models were computed for rotation velocities on the zero-age main-sequence of 0 and 300 km/s and with the latest revision of stellar mass-loss rates. Since the mass coverage is incomplete, in particular at non-solar chemical composition, our parameter study is still preliminary and must be viewed as exploratory. Stellar population properties computed with Starburst99 and the new evolution models show some marked differences in comparison with models obtained using earlier tracks. Since individual stars now tend to be more luminous and bluer when on the blue side of the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram, the populations mirror this trend. For instance, increases by factors of two or more are found for the light-to-mass ratios at ultraviolet to near-infrared wavelengths, as well as for the output of hydrogen ionizing photons. If these results are confirmed once the evolution models have matured, recalibrations of certain star-formation and initial mass function indicators will be required.

Reference: Astrophysical Journal, 2007, 663, 995
Status: Manuscript has been accepted