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Title:Theoretical statistics of zero-age cataclysmic variables
Author(s):Politano, Michael James
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Webbink, Ronald F.
Department / Program:Physics
Discipline:Physics
Degree:Ph.D.
Genre:Dissertation
Subject(s):white dwarf masses
mass ratios
orbital periods
cataclysmic variables
zero-age cataclysmic variables
Abstract:The distribution of the white dwarf masses, the distribution of the mass ratios and the distribution of the orbital periods in cataclysmic variables which are forming at the present time are calculated. These systems are referred to as "zero-age cataclysmic variables". The results show that 60% of the systems being formed contain helium white dwarfs and 40% contain carbon-oxygen white dwarfs. The mean white dwarf mass in those systems containing helium white dwarfs is 0.34 M . 0 The mean white dwarf mass in those systems containing carbon-oxygen white dwarfs is 0.75 M . The distribution of white dwarf 0 masses in zero-age cataclysmic variables is similar to the distribution of masses in single white dwarfs for masses above approximately 0.6 M . 0 The distribution of white dwarf masses in zero-age cataclysmic variables is not sufficient to account for the observed high white dwarf masses in cataclysmic variables, emphasizing the possible importance of selection effects. The orbital period distribution identifies four main classes of zero-age cataclysmic variables: 1.) short-period systems containing helium white dwarfs, 2.) systems containing carbon-oxygen white dwarfs whose secondaries are convectively stable against rapid mass transfer to the white dwarf, 3.) systems containing carbon-oxygen white dwarfs whose secondaries are radiatively stable against rapid mass transfer to the white dwarf and 4.) long period systems with evolved secondaries. The ranges of progenitor lobe-filling giant masses and radii are also better identified. The white dwarf mass distribution in zero-age cataclysmic variables has direct application to the calculation of the frequency of outbursts in classical novae as a function of the mass of the white dwarf. The method developed in this thesis to calculate the distributions of the orbital parameters in zero-age cataclysmic variables can be used to calculate theoretical statistics of any class of binary systems. This method provides a theoretical framework from which to investigate the statistical properties and the evolution of the orbital parameters of binary systems.
Issue Date:1988
Genre:Dissertation / Thesis
Type:Text
Language:English
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/23928
Rights Information:1988 Michael James Politano
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-05-17
Identifier in Online Catalog:3471852


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