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New Zr II oscillator strengths and the zirconium conflict in the HgMn star chi Lupi

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  • Physics And Astronomy


Lifetimes on the sub-nanosecond scale for the levels v(2)D(3/2), v(2)F(3/2) and v(2)F(5/2) in the 4d5s5p configuration in Zr II have been measured, using the method of laser-induced fluorescence. Combined with branching fractions obtained with the Lund Ultraviolet (UV) Fourier Transform Spectrometer (FTS), experimental oscillator strengths have been derived. From Hubble Space Telescope/Goddard High-Resolution Spectrograph spectra, the zirconium abundance in the HgMn star chi Lupi has been determined from Zr II and Zr III lines. More than an order of magnitude difference in the Zr II abundance has been derived from these ionization stages. The difference is much too large to be explained by uncertainties in the oscillator strengths. Possible explanations of this difference have to be found in the stellar models, such as the influence of non-LTE or diffusion.

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