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Stellar Evolution Physics

Volume 1. Physical Processes in Stellar Interiors


  • Author: Icko Iben, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
  • Date Published: November 2012
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107016569
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About the Authors
  • This text describes the microscopic physics operating in stars and demonstrates how stars respond from formation, through hydrogen-burning phases, up to the onset of helium burning. Intended for beginning graduate students and senior undergraduates with a solid background in physics, it illustrates the intricate interplay between the microscopic physical processes and the stars' macroscopic responses. The volume starts with the gravitationally contracting phase which carries the star from formation to the core hydrogen-burning main sequence, through the main sequence phase, through shell hydrogen-burning phases as a red giant, up to the onset of core helium burning. Particular emphasis is placed on describing the gravothermal responses of stars to nuclear transformations in the interior and energy loss from the surface, responses which express the very essence of stellar evolution. The volume is replete with many illustrations and detailed numerical solutions to prepare the reader to program and calculate evolutionary models.

    • Provides the most in-depth treatment of microscopic input physics and the macroscopic responses, emphasising the interplay between them
    • Instils an appreciation of how a star responds gravothermally to nuclear reaction-induced transformations and energy loss from the surface
    • Emphasises methods for obtaining numerical solutions enabling students to construct their own stellar evolutionary models
    • Over 300 illustrations describe in detail the structural characteristics and the physical processes occurring in stellar models
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This is a book by one of the most prolific researchers in the area of stellar evolution, and he has plenty to teach practitioners in the field … [the] style is always clear and straightforward … This is not a book for the faint-hearted, but it is certainly full of fascinating detail which will repay study by the active researcher … Iben has produced a classic monograph, which compares well with classics of the past, and I am pleased to have a copy.' The Observatory

    Customer reviews

    19th Oct 2017 by NeilRTaylor

    This really is a first rate book on stellar physics and evolution. It is definitely 'not' an entry level book so be prepared to need a background in mathematical physics to fully appreciate it. (I would suggest that a good understanding of the contents of, for example, 'Astrophysics Processes' by Hale Bradt would allow you to get the best from Iben's masterly tomes). If you are undertaking, or about to start, a doctorate in stellar physics, or are an advanced final year undergraduate or masters level student looking to complete a dissertation in this area, then it is highly recommended reading

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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2012
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107016569
    • length: 906 pages
    • dimensions: 252 x 192 x 44 mm
    • weight: 2.05kg
    • contains: 313 b/w illus. 54 tables
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Introduction and Overview:
    1. Qualitative description of single and binary star evolution
    2. Quantitative foundations of stellar evolution theory
    Part II. Basic Physical Processes in Stellar Interiors:
    3. Properties of and physical processes in the interiors of main sequence stars – order of magnitude estimates
    4. Statistical physics, thermodynamics, and equations of state
    5. Polytropes and single zone models: elementary tools for understanding some aspects of stellar structure and evolution
    6. Hydrogen-burning nuclear reactions and energy-generation rates
    7. Photon-matter interactions and opacity
    8. Equations of stellar evolution and methods of solution
    Part III. Pre-Main Sequence, Main Sequence, and Shell Hydrogen Burning Evolution of Single Stars:
    9. Star formation and evolution to the main-sequence
    10. Solar structure and neutrino physics
    11. Evolution during core hydrogen-burning phases up to the onset of helium burning

  • Author

    Icko Iben, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
    Icko Iben, Jr is Emeritus Distinguished Professor of Astronomy and Physics at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, where he also gained his MS and PhD degrees in Physics and where a Distinguished Lectureship in his name was established in 1998. He initiated his teaching career at Williams College (1958–1961), engaged in astrophysics research as a Senior Research Fellow at Cal Tech (1961–1964), and continued his teaching career at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1964–1972) and Illinois (1972–1999). He has held visiting Professorships at over a dozen institutions, including Harvard University, the University of California, Santa Cruz, the University of Bologna, Italy and Niigata University, Japan. He was elected to the US National Academy of Sciences in 1985 and his awards include the Russell Lectureship of the American Astronomical Society (1989), the George Darwin Lectureship (1984) and the Eddington Medal (1990) of the Royal Astronomical Society, and the Eminent Scientist Award of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (2003–2004).

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