The Impact of Realistic Red Supergiant Mass Loss on Stellar Evolution

Emma R. Beasor, Ben Davies, Nathan Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Accurate mass-loss rates are essential for meaningful stellar evolutionary models. For massive single stars with initial masses between 8 and 30M⊙the implementation of cool supergiant mass loss in stellar models strongly affects the resulting evolution, and the most commonly used prescription for these cool-star phases is that of de Jager. Recently, we published a new Ṁ prescription calibrated to RSGs with initial masses between 10 and 25 M⊙, which unlike previous prescriptions does not overestimate Ṁ for the most massive stars. Here, we carry out a comparative study to the MESA-MIST models, in which we test the effect of altering mass loss by recomputing the evolution of stars with masses 12-27 M⊙ with the new Ṁ-prescription implemented. We show that while the evolutionary tracks in the HR diagram of the stars do not change appreciably, the mass of the H-rich envelope at core collapse is drastically increased compared to models using the de Jager prescription. This increased envelope mass would have a strong impact on the Type II-P SN lightcurve, and would not allow stars under 30 M⊙ to evolve back to the blue and explode as H-poor SN. We also predict that the amount of H-envelope around single stars at explosion should be correlated with initial mass, and we discuss the prospects of using this as a method of determining progenitor masses from supernova light curves.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number55
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Nov 20 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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