The wind speeds, dust content, and mass-loss rates of evolved AGB and RSG stars at varying metallicity

Steven R. Goldman*, Jacco Th van Loon, Albert A. Zijlstra, James A. Green, Peter R. Wood, Ambra Nanni, Hiroshi Imai, Patricia A. Whitelock, Mikako Matsuura, Martin A.T. Groenewegen, José F. Gómez

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    116 Citations (Scopus)


    We present the results of our survey of 1612-MHz circumstellar OH maser emission from asymptotic giant branch (AGB) stars and red supergiants (RSGs) in the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC). We have discovered four new circumstellar maser sources in the LMC, and increased the number of reliable wind speeds from infrared (IR) stars in the LMC from 5 to 13. Using our new wind speeds, as well as those from Galactic sources, we have derived an updated relation for dust-driven winds: vexp ∝ ZL0.4. We compare the subsolar metallicityLMC OH/IR stars with carefully selected samples of more metal-rich OH/IR stars, also at known distances, in the Galactic Centre and Galactic bulge. We derive pulsation periods for eight of the bulge stars for the first time by using near-IR photometry from the VistaVariables in the Via Lactea survey.We have modelled our LMC OH/IR stars and developed an empirical method of deriving gas-to-dust ratios and mass-loss rates by scaling the models to the results from maser profiles.We have done this also for samples in the Galactic Centre and bulge and derived a new mass-loss prescription which includes luminosity, pulsation period, and gas-to-dust ratio M˙ = 1.06-0.8 +3.5 × 10-5(L/104 L)0.9±0.1(P/500 d)0.75±0.3(rgd/200)-0.03±0.07 M yr-1. The tightest correlation is found between mass-loss rate and luminosity. We find that the gas-to-dust ratio has little effect on the mass-loss of oxygen-rich AGB stars and RSGs within the Galaxy and the LMC. This suggests that the mass-loss of oxygen-rich AGB stars and RSGs is (nearly) independent of metallicity between a half and twice solar.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)403-433
    Number of pages31
    JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 11 Feb 2017


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