Astronomy and Astrophysics, volume 536A, 65-65 (2011/12-1)
The VLT-FLAMES survey of massive stars: Nitrogen abundances for Be-type stars in the Magellanic Clouds.
DUNSTALL P.R., BROTT I., DUFTON P.L., LENNON D.J., EVANS C.J., SMARTT S.J. and HUNTER I.
Abstract (from CDS):
We compare the predictions of evolutionary models for early-type stars with atmospheric parameters, projected rotational velocities and nitrogen abundances estimated for a sample of Be-type stars. Our targets are located in 4 fields centred on the Large Magellanic Cloud cluster: NGC2004 and the N11 region as well as the Small Magellanic Cloud clusters: NGC330 and NGC346. Atmospheric parameters and photospheric abundances have been determined using the non-LTE atmosphere code tlusty. Effective temperature estimates were deduced using three different methodologies depending on the spectral features observed; in general they were found to yield consistent estimates. Gravities were deduced from Balmer line profiles and microturbulences from the SiIII spectrum. Additionally the contributions of continuum emission from circumstellar discs were estimated. Given its importance in constraining stellar evolutionary models, nitrogen abundances (or upper limits) were deduced for all the stars analysed. Our nitrogen abundances are inconsistent with those predicted for targets spending most of their main sequence life rotating near to the critical velocity. This is consistent with the results we obtain from modelling the inferred rotational velocity distribution of our sample and of other investigators. We consider a number of possibilities to explain the nitrogen abundances and rotational velocities of our Be-type sample.